Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Vatican complains of misquote on same-sex marriage
Media reports this week that the Vatican has signaled possible support for gay couples have been hastily denied by spokesman Archbishop Paglia.
- Alessandro Speciale
- Vatican City
- February 8, 2013
A top Vatican official blamed the media for “derailing” his recent remarks on possible legal protections for unmarried couples, while reaffirming his support for British and French bishops who have been vocal opponents of same-sex marriage.
Speaking at a Vatican press conference on Monday (Feb. 4), Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, head of the Pontifical Council for the Family, had acknowledged that nations could find “private law solutions” to protect the rights of unmarried couples — including, potentially, gay and lesbian couples.
Paglia also said the church should support the repeal of laws that criminalize homosexuality in various countries.
His remarks were widely repeated, with some interpreting it as a softening of the Vatican’s stance just as bishops in France and Britain are furiously opposing the legalization of same-sex marriage.
In an interview on Vatican Radio on Wednesday (Feb. 6), Paglia said he had been “very surprised” by the way his words had been reported by “some media.”
“Not only were the words not understood ... but in truth, and perhaps knowingly, they were, as it were, derailed,” he said.
For the archbishop, recognizing that “norms that protect individual rights” can find their place in “existing (legal) systems” is “completely different” from approving same-sex marriage.
Marianne Duddy-Burke, executive director of DignityUSA, a lay group for gay Catholics, called Paglia’s apparent backtracking “disheartening.”
However, she emphasized that “real hope on this front comes from the people, not the hierarchy,” as Catholics “continue to grow increasingly supportive of civil recognition of same-sex couples’ relationships.”
In his original remarks, Paglia had been careful to stress that the protection of the rights for unmarried couples shouldn’t be confused with the reaffirmation of the unique value of traditional marriage.
But his words came on the eve of a key vote by the British Parliament on legalizing gay marriage, which passed Tuesday 400-175 with the support of Prime Minister David Cameron.
In his Vatican Radio interview, Paglia said he was “totally supportive” of British bishops, and that he had been equally sympathetic to initiatives by French bishops to attempt to stop the legalization of gay marriage.
Full Story: Vatican backtracks on support for gay couples
Source: Washington Post