Minneapolis, Minnesota

Basilica of Saint Mary

At a rally in Loring Park, a place where movements and causes have received impetus and sought divine sanction over the years, hundreds of faithful Roman Catholics gathered on a hillside in the shadow of The Basilica of Saint Mary, one block distant, to sing, pray, and voice their opposition to the anti-marriage amendment to Minnesota’s Constitution.

“Bless our celebration,” they prayed. “Bless those with whom we disagree … those for whom it takes courage to be here.

Jim Smith, Catholics for Marriage Equality MN, emceed the evening event, Aug. 15, under the title “I Do! Believe in the Freedom to Marry.”

The amendment to Minnesota’s Constitution will appear on the statewide general election ballot, Nov. 6, and would limit the freedom to marry to opposite gendered couples. Its passage and placement on the ballot by the Republican-led Legislature was supported strongly by the institutional structure of the Roman Catholic Church in Minnesota.

If the marriage amendment is defeated, same-sex civil marriage will still be illegal in Minnesota. If civil marriage rights were one day extended to same-sex couples, the nation’s separation of church and state would guarantee that churches, including the Roman Catholic Church, would have the freedom to choose whom they marry.

Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus • “Marry Us”

According to the printed program distributed in Loring Park, “A faithful Catholic can vote ‘no.’ Our tradition teaches that conscience is the highest norm and that we are to follow our conscience even in opposition to official church authority.”

In his first public event as the new conductor of the Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus, Ben Riggs greeted the crowd and led his singers in “Marry Us!” – a song they have sung throughout Minnesota and the United States.

For more information: Catholics for Marriage Equality MN;Dignity USACatholic Coalition for Church Reform.

Other faith traditions actively oppose the amendment, as reflected in this video of a priest, a minister, and a rabbi, because of its restriction on their religious freedom:

 

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