NEW YORK – On July 5, Father Jonathan Morris, a Catholic priest of the Archdiocese of New York and a Fox News contributor, misrepresented the Church when asked what conscientious objectors should do if they work for an agency issuing same-sex marriage licenses.
According to the Catholic Church, there are no excuses for participating in or condoning so-called same-sex marriage.
The Church says: “In those situations where homosexual unions have been legally recognized or have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage, clear and emphatic opposition is a duty. One must refrain from any kind of formal cooperation in the enactment or application of such gravely unjust laws and, as far as possible, from material cooperation on the level of their application. In this area, everyone can exercise the right to conscientious objection.”
Here’s Father Morris speaking to countless people on TV, with the Fox anchors trusting him for the correct answer:
Father Morris announced his Fox commentary on Facebook, where some of his brother priests rebuked or questioned him, along with laypeople. Here are a few screenshots:
As a priest and journalist, it’s Father Morris’s duty to know the truth and report it. I hope he will correct his statement, but much damage is done.
Please read the Vatican’s entire 2003 statement Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons and share it with your family and friends. It was issued by Cardinal Josef Ratzinger during the reign of Pope Saint John Paul II.
Update July 7: Reflecting on his initial Facebook comment posted here, Father Nicholson said: “To be more precise I should have said it was material immediate cooperation. I wrote in haste… Material cooperation that is immediate is not as easy as Fr. Morris says. It is a matter of sin and he is misleading people when he says material cooperation is not serious.”