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Supreme Court Stays Redefinition of Marriage in Virginia

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
8/20/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Decision follows slew of marriage cases

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to delay the implementation of an appeals court ruling which struck down the expressed will of the voters of the State of Virginia that marriage is capable only between one man and one woman.

The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a U.S. Circuit court ruling, redefining the institution of marriage.

The U.S. Supreme Court overturned a U.S. Circuit court ruling, redefining the institution of marriage.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
8/20/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: US, Legal, Politics, Faith, marriage, family, gay, lesbian, culture


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The highest court in the nation, the US Supreme Court,  issued the stay after a county clerk in northern Virginia requested it. The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond rejected the Virginia constitutional amendment which clarified that marriage is solely possible between one man and one woman.

If the stay had not been granted, homosexual and lesbian couples would have been able to be civilly married in Virginia as early as August 21st. In addition, if the lower court's ruling had held, the state would also have had to recognize homosexual and lesbian partnerships as marriages in Virginia if they had come from a State which has changed the definition of marriage.

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This decision echoes a previous order in January that put a halt to the compelled judicial recognition of same-sex unions in Utah, and most other federal court decisions which have altered the definition of marriage as solely between one man and one woman.

Many States, by Court decision, have altered the definition of marriage. In effect they have manufactured a new form of civil marriage for men who choose to call their relationship with another man a marriage - and for women who choose to call their relationship with other women a marriage. In such States, civil marriage applications no longer even use the words "bride and groom". Instead, they have substituted "spouse 1" and "spouse 2".

Byron Babione, a senior counsel for the Public Interest Law Firm, Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF),  based in Arizona, said that with these rulings the Supreme Court is making it clear that it "believes a dignified process is better than disorder." ADF is one of a myriad of legal groups fighting to defend marriage as solely between one man and one woman by defending the rights of the people within a State to make the decision. "Virginians deserve an orderly and fair resolution to the question of whether they will remain free to preserve marriage as the union of a man and a woman in their laws," he said.

Some who support the homosexual equivalency movement were disappointed; angrily saying that gay and lesbian couples have waited long enough to marry. "Loving couples-and families-should not have to endure yet another standstill before their commitment to one another is recognized here in Virginia," said James Parrish, executive director of Equality Virginia, a group which opposes marriage as between one man and one woman and fights to change the definition of marriage and restructure the culture through such a redefinition.

This struggle has positioned the Catholic Church, most other classical, biblical and creedal Christians, faithful Jews and many other defenders of marriage as solely possible between one man and one woman against a rising tide of homosexual equivalency activists who seek to compel a change in the definition of marriage.

Civil institutions did not create marriage, nor can they create a right to marry for those who are incapable of marriage. Marriage and family have been inscribed by the Divine Architect into the order of creation. Marriage is ontologically between one man and one woman, ordered toward the union of the spouses, open to children and formative of family.

Family is the first vital cell of society; the first church, first school, first hospital, first economy, first government and first mediating institution of our social order. Heterosexual marriage, procreation, and the nurturing of children form the foundation for the family, and the family forms the foundation of civil society.

Marriage as existing solely between one man and one woman was not an idea manufactured by the Christian Church. It precedes Christianity. Though affirmed, fulfilled, and elevated by Christian teaching, the truth that marriage can exist only between one man and one woman is not based on religion or revelation alone, but on the Natural Moral Law, written on the human heart and discernible through the exercise of reason. 

The Williams Institute at UCLA's School of Law claims that as many as 7,100 same-sex couples could get married within three years of a law change in Virginia. That's based on 2010 Census figures showing that Virginia had more than 14,000 same-sex couples, as well as past experience with Massachusetts after it legalized gay marriage.

Such a prediction is opposed by many other groups and institutions.

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