Boston Archdiocese 'in consultation' with St. Paul Elementary

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May 13, 2010, 6:44 am
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(NECN: Jennifer Eagan, Hingham, Mass.) - The Boston Archdiocese said it is gathering information on a case in which a lesbian couple said a Catholic school in Hingham rescinded its acceptance of their child because of they are "in discord" with church teachings.

Michelle Martinez of Holliston said, "You think about how progressive we are and how far we've moved along and for them not to admit this small child, I mean come on, it's time to wake up."

John Richmond of Hingham said, "Doesn't surprise me in this community, however it does surprise me in this day and age in our Commonwealth of Massachusetts that some of that can still go on."

One of the boy's parents, who wished to remain anonymous, told the Associated Press, "I'm accustomed to discrimination, I suppose, at my age and my experience as a gay woman. But I didn't expect it against my child."

Nancy of Plymouth said, "I think it is punishing children for a perceived crime that's committed by parents. I personally think that same sex couples have every right to be respected and their children should be allowed to go to the school of their choice."

The boy's mother told the AP that St. Paul's Reverend James Raffert said her relationship was in discord with the teachings of the Catholic church that marriage is only between a man and a woman, and that the school would have to answer questions.

Terrence Donilon, a spokesman for the Boston Archdiocese, said it learned about the school's decision late Tuesday. He said the archdiocese is now in "consultation with the pastor and principal to gather more information."

"Same sex marriage couples have to kind of go through and understand that when they have children these are the kind of issues they're going to have to face," said Rob Wheeler of Hingham.

But former St. Paul's parishioners say the church needs to adapt to the changing times.

Kathy Mischik of Hingham said, "I've taught CCD at St. Paul's, the pastor is wonderful, it's just he's older, the church is just archaic, they need to make changes."

"The parents are lesbians, so what? Look what the church has done. The pope should hold his head in shame, I'm disgusted," said Kathleen Reichardt of Hingham.

The pastor and principal would not comment.

The archdiocese said it is in consultation with both of them, and told the AP there is no specific policy prohibiting children of same sex couples from attending catholic school.

Material from The Associated Press used in this report.

Tags: Catholic, Catholic Church, lesbian, Hingham , Saint Paul School
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