November 2, 2009
Bishops to Hear Report about Defense of Marriage
WASHINGTON — The U.S. bishops will hear a report highlighting U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) efforts to promote and protect marriage as the exclusive and permanent union between a man and a woman at their November 16-19 meeting in Baltimore.
Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, who chairs the bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage, will deliver the report. Report items include an update on the Committee’s work in catechesis/education and public policy. A key effort includes development of five seven-nine minute videos, to be rolled out with accompanying pamphlets and a related Web site in 2010.
The videos and pamphlets will treat several themes, including the beauty of sexual difference between man and woman, the gift of a child, the unique roles of mothers and fathers, the dignity of the human person, and the fact that marriage and family are fundamental to the common good and important for religious liberty. Key target audiences include Catholic young adults and priests/deacons.
Focus groups conducted in 2009 confirmed that basic catechesis on these topics is needed. Archbishop Kurtz’s report also will emphasize the connection between protecting the truth of marriage and serving the common good of all.
The defense of marriage effort is one part of the bishops’ broad initiative to strengthen marriage that is one of five USCCB goals for 2009-2011. The initiative also includes development of a pastoral statement, “Marriage: Love and Life in the Divine Plan,” and For Your Marriage, a popular Web and public service effort found at http://www.foryourmarriage.org/.
The other four priority issues of the USCCB center on faith formation and sacramental practice, vocations to the priesthood and religious life, the life and dignity of the human person, and cultural diversity—with particular emphasis on Hispanics.
Posted by Mathew Treadwell at 11:51 AM