ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)– Maryland made history Thursday night. Gov. Martin O’Malley signed a law allowing legal same-sex marriages in the state.
But as Mike Hellgren reports, opponents are still dead set against it.
The Catholic Church has long been fiercely opposed to same-sex marriage, and when Gov. O’Malley– a Catholic– signed it into law in Maryland after pushing it through the General Assembly, it drew swift rebuke from church leadership.
“The fact that people of faith were just overrun on this whole thing so quickly is what really concerns me,” Cardinal Edwin O’Brien of the Baltimore Archdiocese said.
Not all Catholics oppose the legislation, including Francis DeBernardo, head of a large Catholic ministry that fought for marriage equality.
“We are basically speaking about human beings, and about their inherent dignity and about the fact that their rights and families have to be protected,” DeBernardo of the New Ways Ministry said.
He believes Catholic hierarchy will eventually change their stance, and that more and more Catholics support same-sex marriage.
“Laypeople and theologians see the issue as one of social justice and the bishops view it as one of sexuality,” he said.
“My basic concern is that faith and religion is being seen more and more as a permissible but private eccentricity,” Cardinal O’Brien said.
But what about the governor? How did he reconcile the position of his church with the position in his heart?
“My faith teaches me that human dignity is an important thing and that each of us is a gift from God,” Gov. O’Malley said. “And that’s the faith that I follow.”
Same-sex couples will have to wait until next year to have official services.