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Washington State Tells Catholic Church It Can’t Collect To Overturn Gay Marriage

by David Badash on August 30, 2012

in News,Politics,Religion

Contrary to plan, Catholic Churches in the state of Washington will not be allowed to collect funds to help overturn that state’s impending same-sex marriage law. State law does not allow “bundling,” or third-parties, to act as intermediaries for contributions — even if they’re just accepting sealed envelopes. Voters in November will go to the polls to decide if the law supporting marriage equality Governor Christine Gregoire signed in February should stand, or be overturned.

Watch: Maryland Governor Signs Same-Sex Marriage Bill Into Law (Video)

“Last week, Yakima Bishop Joseph Tyson sent a letter to pastors in 41 parishes of the Yakima Diocese asking them to announce a special collection that would go to Preserve Marriage Washington, which is fighting the same-sex marriage law that was passed earlier this year,” Oregon Live reports:

The diocese’s chief of staff, Monsignor Robert Siler, said Tuesday that the expected collection date was Sept. 8-9.

But Lori Anderson, a spokeswoman for the state’s Public Disclosure Commission, says no organization can be an intermediary for a contribution. She says the church can hand out envelopes, but either a member of Preserve Washington has to be on hand to collect them or parishioners must send them in individually.

Preserve Marriage Washington has lagged in fundraising so far, raising just $471,000 compared with the nearly $6.1 million raised by Washington United for Marriage, which supports the gay marriage law.

Washington United for Marriage announced Monday that the group has reserved $5 million for television advertising starting sometime after Labor Day.

In April, the Archdiocese of Seattle deployed parishioners and used Church funds and resources to help collect 120,000 signatures that put Washington State’s same-sex marriage law on November’s ballot, in an effort to repeal it.


On Our Radar – Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain And The Growing Catholic Mutiny

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Alex_Parrish August 30, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Good start; now they must ENFORCE it — which will not be an easy task. The RC church is no respecter of law or authority other than itself, so I expect it will proceed with the plan to use its parish churches to collect the money anyway, and that will be difficult if not impossible to police. It is high-time for a crackdown on the RC flaunting of election law. I hope this is the venue. If an entire diocese were to lose its tax-exempt status, that would send a clear message to the RC church that this is a nation of laws and that it is subject to those laws.

InvokeRights August 31, 2012 at 6:52 am

Guarantee you since the RC has made its intentions 'known', the state WILL keep an eye on their funding and if anything seems suddenly 'out of place', then it WILL be slapped, and hard.

MichaelR3491 August 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm

I never heard of any Catholic Diocese holding a "Special Collection" to fight against pedophilia among the Clergy. Perhaps that effort would be more in keeping with Catholic values. But no, they'd rather wage the battle in favor of inequality. Bishop Tyson, "What Would Jesus Do"?

bsradar August 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Ignore this absurdity, turn in the contributions, defeat pseudo-marriage, and let 'em sue.

ShirtsOutLoud August 31, 2012 at 1:39 am

My name is Victoria and I was wondering if we could talk. Talk as two human beings with mutual respect. What is it about marriage that you are trying to defend? What will happen if gays can marry? I am simply interested in hearing your opinion.

Much regards,

Syrra August 31, 2012 at 2:26 pm

You won't get a personal opinion. You will get a soap-boxed delivery of Bible verse-masked-as-personal-opinion…from a book written by men who claimed to have spoken directly with God and followed unquestioningly because a city full of men (VC) tells them to.

I have yet to pose that question to a Christian who states they believe same-sex marriage is immoral and wrong and gotten an answer that is of their OWN opinion, rather than something taught to them from an early age by another…

ShirtsOutLoud September 2, 2012 at 4:42 am

Hmmm… Well no one has all the answers. I just want to know what makes her have such strong convictions. Maybe it's a him. Bsradar please feel free to speak. Or email me. There's nothing threatening or ominous. I just want to talk to someone with the opposite perspective.

Thank you

dvelco August 30, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Thanks for this article and your reporting. What you do is appreciated.

I posted it to my LGBT Group on LinkedIn to spur members to read your article and to make comment. I also scooped it at Scoop.It on my LGBT Times news mashup.

Link to group >>

All LGBT+ and community allies…. please come join me and 15,000+ of your soon to be great connections on LinkedIn. The member base represents 80% of the world's countries.

It's core value is – Visibility can lead to awareness which can lead to equality. Come stand with us and increase our visibility on the globe's largest professional networking site. Be a professional who just happens to be LGBT – or a welcomed community ally.

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