HRC Blog

Maine’s Catholic Church Steps Back from Marriage Equality Debate

The following post comes from HRC Digital Media Team Member Eric Cameron:

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Maine has announced that the Church will not actively campaign against the marriage equality referendum expected on the November ballot.

On Friday, Bishop Richard Malone announced that the Catholic Church will take no active role in fundraising, staffing, advertising or campaigning against the expected measure. Instead, the Church will focus on educating Maine’s estimated 185,000 Catholics about the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman. A 24-page letter addressing the Church’s stance is specifically targeted at Catholic congregations.

The announcement stands in stark contrast with the Church’s position in 2009, when it donated as much as $1.9 million to repeal a marriage equality statute passed by the Maine legislature and governor.

Back in January, advocates for marriage equality delivered more than 105,000 signatures to Maine’s Secretary of State, trying to put marriage equality back on the ballot this fall. Recent polls show that 54 percent of Maine residents support allowing loving, committed same-sex couples to marry.

You can learn more about efforts to bring marriage equality to the state of Maine here.

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