Catholic schools will no longer be allowed to teach the Catechism’s doctrine that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered,” says a cabinet minister in Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty’s government.
As politicians debated a bill that would force Catholic schools to launch gay clubs on March 29th, Member of Provincial Parliament Glen Murray (Toronto Centre) lashed out against Ontario’s bishops over Catholic teaching on homosexuality.
“I have to say to the bishops: ‘You’re not allowed to do that anymore,’” said Murray, an open homosexual who serves as McGuinty’s Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, according to the Hansard transcript.
“I’m not allowed to say to the Catholics—nor should I—or to other Christians or Muslims or Jews, that because of your faith you’re intrinsically disordered,” he continued.
“I would never say to you that anything that goes on in your family with the person you love—can you imagine me describing a husband-and-wife relationship as inherently depraved?” he added.
Suresh Dominic of Campaign Life Catholics said Murray’s comments “amount to a declaration of war against the Catholic Church and all people who support traditional moral values.”
“We’ve been saying all along that McGuinty wants to dictate what the Church can teach in its schools and here it is straight from the government’s mouth,” Dominic added.
Murray made the comments in a debate on Bill 13, known as the Accepting Schools Act, which seeks to impose tougher consequences, including expulsion, for “bullying and hate-motivated actions,“ but has been largely framed around the issue of homosexuality.
The bill requires all schools, including the publicly-funded Catholic schools, to start clubs for homosexual students, which can be called “gay-straight alliance or another name.”
Over 2,000 parents and concerned citizens rallied outside Queen’s Park last Thursday calling for the bill’s defeat.
Pro-family advocates charge that gay-straight alliances encourage the normalization and affirmation of the homosexual lifestyle, and promote homosexual activism by tying youth into a cross-continent network of activists.
And Ontario’s Catholic bishops have opposed the controversial clubs, saying they encourage early self-identification as homosexual, and have instead begun setting up a network of clubs under the name “Respecting Differences”.
The anti-bullying bill follows a year-long campaign to force gay-straight alliances on the Catholic schools, but activists have nevertheless been dissatisfied, charging that the bill stops short of forcing the GSA name.
As a result, Ontario’s New Democratic Party has promised an amendment that would require schools to use the name “gay-straight alliance.”
Despite Murray’s statement that the bishops are “not allowed” to teach Catholic teaching on homosexuality, in the same speech at the legislature he said: “There’s no one here that’s suggesting that we shouldn’t teach a Catholic perspective in our schools.”
“It is about celebrating diversity. It isn’t about taking Catholic teaching out of Catholic schools,” he continued.
“It’s about putting life-affirming, positive images and stories around gay and lesbian children, Muslim children, kids and women of all shapes.”
Murray’s comments are the most clear public statement from the government thus far that it intends to forbid Catholic teaching on homosexuality in the Catholic schools. The right of Ontario’s Catholic schools to receive public funding while imparting the Catholic faith is guaranteed under Canada’s Constitution.
In January 2010, a Ministry of Education spokeswoman had refused to answer direct questions from LifeSiteNews as to whether the government’s “equity and inclusive education strategy” would be used to forbid the controversial Catholic teaching.
In April 2011, another Ministry spokesperson said the mandatory homosexual clubs could not help students to “reform their sexuality.”
In the fall, former Minister of Education Kathleen Wynne said the education system is the government’s “single most important” avenue to tackle “homophobia.” She said she was “very disappointed” by the refusal of Catholic school boards’ to allow gay-straight alliances but that she expects the boards “will all come around.”
Current Minister of Education Laurel Broten has labeled opponents Bill 13’s pro-family opponents as “homophobic.”
In December, Murray said that by 2013 all prospective teachers in the province, both for the Catholic and public school boards, will be required to undergo focused training in “sexual orientation” and “gender diversity.”
Premier Dalton McGuinty, who identifies himself as a Catholic, has said that he aims to change the province’s “attitudes” on homosexuality, noting it’s a process that “should begin in the home.”
LifeSiteNews.com did not hear back from Glen Murray by press time.