Bruce Hanes received notoriety last July when he issued the first marriage license for a same-sex couple in Pennsylvania.
The Montgomery County Register of Wills also has been a long-time volunteer judge for the mock trial team at Little Flower Catholic High School for Girls.
But not any longer.
The administration of the Northeast Philadelphia school notified Haines that due to his “high profile support of same sex marriage through his position as a public figure,” the school has “relieved him of his volunteer duties at Little Flower,” according to a statement released Sept. 17.
“Our school is appreciative of his service to our students,” the statement said. “However, we expect all volunteers to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with Catholic teaching.”
The church affirms the human dignity of homosexual persons and rejects injustice, oppression, or violence against them. At the same time the church opposes attempts to redefine the institution of marriage only between one man and one woman. That definition of traditional marriage remains the standard under Pennsylvania law.
Hanes has issued 174 marriage licenses to same-sex couples since July. But a Commonwealth Court ruling Sept. 12, the result of a lawsuit by the administration of Gov. Tom Corbett, barred any further such licenses.
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Whether or not you agree with the law, the law of the land is that marriage licenses can only be issued for the marriage between one man and one woman. There is no ambiguity, no room for interpretation. The law is clear. Unless and/or until it is changed, it must be followed. There is a procedure for changing it. It is irresponsible for an official to willfully disregard it and Mr. Hanes is guilty of malfeasance and should be removed from office.
The Church and Little Flower High School have not only the right, but the obligation to disassociate with Mr. Hanes because of his stance. Church teaching on the subject is clear and Mr. Hanes’ actions are clearly contrary to that teaching.
Finally, the Federal Court did not legalize same sex marriage by declaring the prohibition of same sex unions unconstitutional. It paved the way for states to enact laws authorizing same sex unions, but did not mandate them as many who want to believe otherwise have stated.
Good riddance Bruce
Little Flower absolutely did the right thing. My children are in Catholic school and I expect the teachers and volunteers to live the faith. If this man’s example goes against the teachings of the church, he can’t be the example for our children. Perhaps you, Vincent, Robert, and Janice, should re-read the Catechism and Pope Francis’ interview and tell us where either say the church is ok with gay marriage.
Thank you Little Flower.
It is a shame people don’t understand Church teachings.
We may not always agree but we have a duty to Christ and HIS Church to follow her teachings. To allow Mr. Hanes to continue his duties may easily cause scandal(others to sin).
Little Flower High Schoolis wrong to no longer allow Mr. Hanes to volunteer. The church belongs to the people in the pews and you might take a look at the shrinking numbers. Wake up Archdiocese of Philadelphia and listen to Pope Francis!
This action by Little Flower High School demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of the legal system in this Country and in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Attorney General has said that the current Law in Pennsylvania is clearly not consistent with the US Constitution in this matter and, therfore, she will not defend the Law because it would clearly be judged unconstitutional if it were ever argued in Federal Court. The Montgomery County Register of Wills is simply reflecting the obvious that the Law in Pennsylvania would clearly be judged unconstitutional from a Federal perspective and invalidated as a result. This is his professional opinion NOT his religious opinion.
The legal right for a gay couple to marry is a political and civil rule and has nothing to do with church teaching. If the Church were being told they have to perform the marriage, different story but they are not nor has it been suggested they do so.
The School and the Church is far better off teaching the CORRECT moral positions of the Church and not telling members their services are not wanted.