Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of January 31, 2005
Knights of Columbus stamp 40,000 postcards
CWL and K of C join forces oppose same-sex marriage
By BILL GLEN
WCR Staff Writer
A national writing campaign is one way the Knights of Columbus plans to let the federal government know it disagrees with any change in the traditional definition of marriage.
Providing each member of Parliament with a book written by several prominent Canadians discussing the issue is another, says Mickey Casavant.
"The Knights of Columbus is standing firm on its position regarding same-sex marriage," said Casavant, state deputy for the Alberta-Northwest Territories council. "The position the Knights has taken is the direction and position of the bishops of Canada."
Casavant has written the prime minister and the federal minister of justice, as well as the premier and justice minister of Alberta. His letters to Ottawa were acknowledged, while a response from the province reiterated its public opposition to the legalization of same-sex marriages in Canada.
Casavant wants all people express their opposition to the proposed legislation. Parliament will reconvene Jan. 31. "We have encouraged our members to contact their MPs," he said. "We are currently organizing the distribution of postcards to all knights and to some 40,000 parishioners in Alberta to send to Ottawa."
The Knights produced two million postage-paid cards for national distribution, Casavant said. "Along with the CWL (Catholic Women's League) across Canada, we have provided financial support to help supply every MP with a book on marriage in Canada. We split the costs with the CWL."
Titled Divorcing Marriage: Unveiling the Dangers in Canada's New Social Experiment, the book was written by prominent Canadians in the fields of law, ethics, political science, religion, and culture. It questions whether "redefining marriage to include same-sex unions is simply an act of fairness to gays and lesbians, or a hastily conceived social experiment that will undermine human rights, deflecting marriage from the support of children to the mere affirmation of sexual commitment between adults," according to the McGill-Queen's University Press website.
"Personally, I have no problem with two men becoming united, but the term 'marriage' is not to be used," said CWL diocesan council president Fran Lucas, who has been busy writing letters and emails to Ottawa and council's members. "Same-sex marriage is a breakdown of the social family. I think a child has a right to a mother and a father. What the Church teaches is absolutely imperative," she said.
The CWL started its writing campaign in mid-December with letters and emails to members of Parliament. The response by CWL members has been very good, Lucas said.
Robert Picard is president of Canadians for Ethical Government, a non-profit lobby group based in Edmonton.
He said lobby groups across Canada, collectively and individually, are strengthening their position by educating the public on what issues the country is facing should legislation pass.
"We are in defence of marriage. Relationships with people of the same sex have nothing to do with what is found in marriage," he said.
If Parliament passes the legislation, Picard said he will look at what can be done to overturn the decision. "At some time in the future, marriage between a man and a woman only, will have to be enshrined in the Constitution."
Casavant said the time to act has arrived. "If we do not speak up, we know what the result will be. And if we do not do anything, we really have no grounds to complain."
"Relationships with people of the same sex have nothing to do with what is found in marriage."
- Robert Picard
Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 -- Western Catholic Reporter
Our mission: To serve our readers by bringing the Gospel to bear on current issues in the Church and in secular culture through accurate news coverage and reflective commentary.