Thursday, 30 January 2014

Times: Same-sex adoption
Tuesday, January 28, 2014, 00:01 by Jonathan Brimmer, Communications Coordinator, Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties, Valletta

The Ministry for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties points out that assertions made by Rev. Prof. Paul Galea in the article “Parents’ Sexual Orientation” (January 23) may mislead the public in the debate on civil union legislation. Unlike what Prof. Galea assumes, Minister Helena Dalli did not quote any studies during her interview with Philip Leone-Ganado of the Sunday Circle, and hence his attribution of such references to the minister is incorrect. The studies Prof. Galea refers to were mentioned by the interviewer, as can be seen from the write-up.

Times: Lesbian's heart-felt appeal to father over marriage dowry
Wednesday, January 29, 2014, 11:35

The lesbian daughter of a flamboyant Hong Kong tycoon who publicly offered millions of pounds to any man who could woo her into marriage has appealed to her father in an open letter to accept her for who she is.

Cecil Chao made world headlines in 2012 when he tried to find a man who could successfully win his daughter Gigi Chao away from her partner by offering 500 million Hong Kong dollars (£38 million), an offer that a Malaysian newspaper who interviewed him last week said he has doubled.

In a letter to her father published today by two Hong Kong newspapers, Gigi Chao said she knows it is "difficult for you to understand, let alone accept" how she could be romantically attracted to a woman.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Times: N. Cyprus ‘accepts’ gay sex between consenting adults
Tuesday, January 28, 2014, 00:01 by Reuters

Turkish Cypriot-controlled northern Cyprus yesterday became the last territory in Europe to decriminalise sexual relations between consenting, adult men.

Its Parliament voted to abolish the criminal code provisions that carried five year prison sentences. Same-sex relationships between women were not mentioned in the code.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Times: Adoption by gays
Sunday, January 26, 2014, 00:01 by Laurence Mizzi, Paola

I would like to congratulate Bishop Charles Scicluna for his stand on civil unions and, in particular, on adoptions by homosexuals.

His clear and unequivocal statements are a breath of fresh air. By stating what is morally unacceptable according to the teaching of the Church, even at the risk of being accused of trying to impose his beliefs on believers and non-believers alike, Scicluna is only doing what is expected of spiritual leaders.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Times: Parents’ sexual orientation
Thursday, January 23, 2014, 00:01 by Fr Paul Galea

In last Sunday’s Circle magazine feature entitled ‘New choices, new families’, big chunks were reported verbatim from Civil Liberties Minister Helena Dalli, who was quoting studies related to the effects of gay parenting on children, including statements by the American Sociological Association.

Unfortunately, none of these were referenced, except for one article by Judith Stacey and Timothy Biblarz.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Times: Beyond gay adoption, January 23, 2014, 00:01 by Ranier Fsadni

Same-sex couples are already dealing with a Mother’s Day for two mothers. Photo: Reuters/Sallie Dean Shatz

In 2004, three years after the Netherlands became the first country to legalise gay marriage, a group of five Dutch scholars, opponents of the innovation, wrote an open letter to all the parliaments in the world that were debating same-sex marriage.

The scholars conceded that they had no evidence that same-sex marriage had undermined traditional Dutch marriage, although the latter was experiencing a decline and the number of out-of-wedlock births continued to rise. However, they did think that the long public debate on the issue – it had dragged for 10 years – had an effect.

Times: Ethiopian stand on gay adoption
Wednesday, January 22, 2014, 00:01 by Allan Gatt, Birkirkara

In a recent article in Times of Malta about gay couples adopting children, I discovered anew how pharisaical people’s ignorance and hypocrisy can be. One sentence reads: “Countries like Ethiopia had been closing doors on adoptions for Maltese because of fears that prospective single parents could be gay.”

Ethiopians, renowned for their inability to govern themselves and for living in the second poorest country in the world despite being one of the richest in mineral resources like gold, potash, copper, platinum and natural gas, are closing doors on adoptions by Maltese parents because these might be homosexual.

Malta Today: Backlash to gay adoption play boosts promotion, inspires ridicule

A YouTube video ‘protest’ against upcoming gay adoption stage drama Jiena Nhobb, Inti Thobb may turn out to be the best possible advert for the Simon Bartolo-penned production, soon to be staged at the Manoel Theatre.
Wednesday 22 January 2014 - 14:33 by Teodor Reljic

Clare Aguis, Roderick Vassallo and Davide Tucci in the already-controversial Maltese production Jiena Nhobb, Inti Thobb.

Operators working within the local cultural scene will often complain that their audiences are almost always made up of the same groups of people, but the producers of upcoming gay adoption drama Jiena Nhobb, Inti Thobb may just break with that uncomfortable tradition thanks to a viral video aimed - ironically enough - to turn potential punters away from the play.

Malta Today: MGRM calls on PN, Church to reverse position to civil unions

Malta Gay Right Movement calls on Church and Nationalist Party to revise position on adoption by same sex couples and endorse civil union law.
Tuesday 21 January 2014 - 15:21 by a Staff Reporter

The Malta Gay Right Movement (MGRM) called on the Nationalist Party to revise its position on adoption by same sex couples and to fully endorse the civil union bill.

"This is in the best interest of Maltese society and particularly of those children who will continue to be born to LGBT parents," MGRM said.

In a lengthy statement, the organisation addressed a number of issues related to the civil union bill which is currently being discussed in Parliament.

Reacting to arguments which have been brought forward by various public figures on the subject of gay parenting and adoption by same-sex couples, the statement mainly addressed the opposition registered by the Church and the Nationalist Party.

Accusing the Chuch of having an "intrinsically discriminatory and heterosexist attitude" in assuming that one's sexual orientation has a bearing on one's parenting ability, MGRM said "any claim made by the Bishop (Scicluna) and the Catholic Church he represents to tackle homophobia and bullying are, in the final analysis, worthless until the Catholic Church reverses its position to one which recognises that loving relationships between couples of the same-sex are of equal value and worth and as natural and normal although possibly not as common as those between couples of the opposite sex."

Quoting Fr Mark Sultana who said that "gay couples are able to love and to parent," MGRM said that the "logical conclusion of this assertion would be for the church to withdraw its objection to adoption by gay persons since the ability to love and parent is precisely what is expected of adoptive parents."

Noting another objection made by the Church over the natural law principle, MGRM said the Catholic Church goes against the best interest of children being raised by same-sex couples when it opposes legal recognition of both the biological and social parent involved in the child's life, or choses to treat them as unwelcome exceptions rather than as part of the diversity of family forms already present in society.

Reacting to PN leader Simon Busuttil's comments that no one has the right to have children, MGRM said "perhaps someone should inform Dr Busuttil that Article 12 of the European Convention on Human Rights states that 'Men and women of marriageable age have the right to marry and to found a family, according to the national laws governing the exercise of this right'."

MGRM also took umbrage at the PN's insistence to refer to adoption by same-sex couples as gay adoption.

"There is no such thing as gay adoption. There is simply adoption legislated through the adoption act, with an assessment process which, following the introduction of the civil union bill, will also be open to same-sex couples."

It added that the PN's repeated assertions that the civil union bill grants same-sex couples the right to adopt is "misleading and blatantly untrue."

The organization stressed that the civil union bill simply grants those couples in a civil union the same rights as those enjoyed by married couples. "Therefore any reference to marital status in the adoption act will henceforth also be extended to those in a civil union."

Moreover, MGRM said that it The Times misrepresented its comments over the increased difficulties that couples seeking to adopt might face following the introduction of the civil union bill by using 'gay lobby says equality is the main priority' in a byline, implying that equality comes before the best interest of children.

"The gay lobby has always had the best interest of children at heart. In our view, the best interest of children can never be held to be compromised by a law that seeks to address inequality and discrimination, for, as Martin Luther King Jr. said, 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere'."

MGRM pointed out that a country which arbitrarily discriminates against some of its citizens and denies them equal treatment, recognition and rights whether it be on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, race, disability, or any other ground, "does a disservice not just to some children but to all children."

On the prominence given by The Times to a survey commissioned by the Catholic Church in Malta which found that 80% are against adoption by same-sex couples, MGRM said "This is not news. The government as well as LGBT activists were well aware of this fact."

"All such surveys demonstrates is that LGBT people live in an at best, heterosexist and at worst, homophobic environment and that much still needs to be done to ensure the equal treatment of LGBT persons and their families in Maltese society."

"More ironic is that the Catholic Church, an organisation in which all authority and power is vested solely in men and where women and children have no voice, should resort to call on the government to take note of public opinion."

Times: Question on Church survey
Tuesday, January 21, 2014, 00:01 by Anthony Girard, Sliema

The recent survey commissioned by the Church authorities shows that 80 per cent plus of respondents are against adoption by gay couples. I was under the impression, however, that these same authorities oppose this because it goes against “the best interests of the child”.

Now, if the survey results showed that the majority approved of such adoptions, I am sure that the Church authorities would still have insisted on “the best interests of the child”.

So, I ask, why commission the survey in the first place?

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

iNews Malta: Kontroversja madwar produzzjoni li tagħti “eżempji ħżiena”
18:36 | 21.01.2014

Il-produtturi tal-produzzjoni JIENA NĦOBB, INTI TĦOBB irreferew għal filmat li beda jdur bil-kbir fuq il-media soċjali (jidher fuq) din il-ġimgħa. Dan għax fil-filmat membru tar-River of Love Fellowship avża pubblikament lin-nies biex ma jattendux għal din il-produzzjoni għax tagħti “eżempji ħżiena."

Independent: Gay people, like all others, have noright to have children - Busuttil
Monday, 20 January 2014, 12:00 , by Stephen Calleja

Nationalist Party leader Simon Busuttil said that gay people, like heterosexuals, do not have a right to children. Therefore, where gay adoptions are concerned, the most important thing is the protection of the rights of the children.

Civil unions and gay adoptions are two separate issues, Dr Busuttil said in an interview. With regard to civil unions, the PN is in agreement and will vote in favour, but it will insist on a clear distinction between a civil union and marriage. This does not mean that the intention is to reduce the rights of gay people, but the law should establish a difference.

Independent: Adoption and gay couples
Sunday, 19 January 2014, 09:28 , by Deborah Schembri

I have always been fascinated by the depth of wisdom of certain people and the way they impart it in words to be treasured for posterity. So, in honour of one such man who has left the world a better place than he found it, I repeat his very own words in awe and sweet remembrance: “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid but he who conquers that fear.” (Nelson Mandela)

I recalled this quote as I was listening to discussions regarding the current debate on civil unions and adoptions by couples forming such unions. What brought it to mind was the fact that lately I could feel a certain apprehension every time the topic on adoption came up in a discussion. It is an apprehension that I understand because, although I think that it is nothing except the proverbial ‘fear of the unknown’, on the one hand there is a general lack of information; and on the other an unfortunate abundance of misinformation. To add to this confusion, the Church has decided to throw in a survey to try and suffocate the logical and civil argument with nonsensical statistics. This it has done alongside an attempt to exert pressure on Members of Parliament to vote against this legislation because if they voted in favour of it they would be committing a “grave immoral act”.

Independent: PN ready to commit to PL-leaning President when in government
Sunday, 19 January 2014, 11:30 , by Stephen Calleja
[Excerpt from the article. The complete article can be viewed at the hyperlink above.]

Civil unions and gay adoptions

Civil unions and gay adoptions are two separate issues, Dr [Simon] Busuttil said. With regard to civil unions, the PN is in agreement and will vote in favour, but it will insist on a clear distinction between a civil union and marriage. This does not mean that the intention is to reduce the rights of gay people, but the law should establish a difference.

For example, legislation should recognise that there should not be a religious celebration for civil unions and also that what applies in marriage should not necessarily apply in a civil union, said Dr Busuttil.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

BBC News: UKIP councillor blames storms and floods on gay marriage
18 January 2014 Last updated at 17:03 GMT

Councillor David Silvester from Henley-on-Thames had defected from the Tories to UKIP

A UKIP councillor has blamed the recent storms and heavy floods across Britain on the Government's decision to legalise gay marriage.

David Silvester said the prime minister had acted "arrogantly against the Gospel".

In a letter to his local paper he said he had warned David Cameron the legislation would result in "disaster".

UKIP said Mr Silvester's views were "not the party's belief" but defended his right to state his opinions.

Di-ve: Gay adoption and IVF at Teatru Manoel
16 | 01 | 2014 at 08:08 by news

Jiena Nħobb, Inti Tħobb, the most controversial new original Maltese play will hit the Manoel boards from February 7 to 10. The plot is simple enough. A gay musician helps his gay friends to find a surrogate to be inseminated with their sperm through IVF. Far from being a case of adoption, the gay couple decides to raise their own child, knowing that the practice of surrogacy is totally illegal in Malta. The consequences are as various as they are dramatic and heart breaking.

Malta Today: New law in Nigeria bans gay relationships

Nigeria's president has signed a law that bans same-sex marriage and criminalizes homosexual associations, societies and meetings, with penalties of up to 14 years in jail.
Tuesday 14 January 2014 - 08:12

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan

Nigeria has outlawed gay marriage, public displays of same-sex relationships, and belonging to gay groups with the passing of a law that has sparked international condemnation.

President Goodluck Jonathan's spokesman, Reuben Abatim said on Monday that the president signed the bill because it was consistent with the attitudes of most people towards homosexuality in the west African nation.

Malta Today: Bishop Scicluna calls for secret ballot on civil union bill

Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna calls on MPs to hold a secret and free vote on the forthcoming civil union law.
Tuesday 14 January 2014 - 11:46 by Jurgen Balzan

Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna has called on MPs to hold a "free and secret" vote on the civil union bill to ensure that they vote "conscientiously" and honour the oath of allegiance.

Writing on the Church news portal newsbook, Scicluna said that faced by fundamental legislation which will legally recognise new forms of families, "all MPs, whoever they are and whichever party they represent, should be given a free vote and the possibility to express themselves in a secret manner."

All Out: The Death of Roger in Cameroon


"Roger died because he sent a text saying 'I'm very much in love with you'.
The world needs to wake up to what's happening - please add your name to the virtual vigil, and share with others."  - Alice Nkom
Roger is dead and my government is to blame. He was like a son to me.
3 years ago, Roger sent a text message to another man that said, "I'm very much in love with you." In our country, Cameroon, it is illegal to be gay and sohe was arrested and jailed. This is how we met – I am a lawyer who fought to get Roger free.
I defend many people like Roger and he was especially brave. By speaking out he helped fight the anti-gay laws that let this happen. He inspired hundreds of thousands of people around the world.
When I received word that Roger had died I was overwhelmed with grief. But I'm determined to use my sadness and my anger to continue what Roger's courage started.
I've started a virtual vigil for Roger, together with All Out. Will you add your name to honour Roger's memory, then share his story with the people you love?
Add your name here and share Roger's story:
We're calling on leaders around the world to end all anti-gay laws so that no one has to die like Roger – because of who they love.

Times: Nigerian leader signs anti-gay law
Tuesday, January 14, 2014, 00:01 by Reuters

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan signed a Bill yesterday that criminalises same-sex relationships, defying Western pressure over gay rights and provoking criticism from the US.

The Bill, which contains penalties of up to 14 years in prison and bans gay marriage, same-sex “amorous relationships” and membership of gay rights groups, was passed by the national assembly last May but Jonathan had delayed signing it into law.

Times: Same-sex adoptions: not up to the public
Monday, January 13, 2014, 15:36 by Ramona Depares

I’m not a fan of surveys. I don’t believe in true random sampling, so I really look askance whenever we read about how X% want the government to do this and Y% want the exact opposite.

I’m even more sceptical when the results of a survey happen to prove the point that the person commissioning was trying to make. I’ve already given my views about the so-called neutrality of commissioned surveys here:

Which is why I’m taking the revelation that 80% of Maltese are against same-sex adoption ( with an equal pinch of salt.

Independent: Church ‘unable to learn’ from past mistakes - Fr Mark Montebello
Monday, 13 January 2014, 12:00

Photograph Jonathan Borg

Dominican priest, lecturer and author Mark Montebello talks to John Cordina on the Catholic Church in Malta which, he believes, betrays an identity crisis as it resists the introduction of civil unions for same-sex couples.

The Church in Malta has proven to be unable to learn any lessons from its unsuccessful campaigning against divorce, opting instead to entrench itself, according to outspoken priest Mark Montebello.

The church is back in the headlines in recent weeks over its strong opposition to a bill that would allow same-sex couples to enter civil unions – and, particularly, over the provisions enabling such couples to adopt children.

Times: ‘Grave immoral act and sin not quite same thing’
Sunday, January 12, 2014, 10:45

Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna has come out strongly against gay adoptions. He tells Kurt Sansone a baby has a right to be brought up by a mother and father.

In an interview with Italian publication Avvenire, you spoke of a grave immoral act if politicians voted for adoptions by same sex couples. How do you define a grave immoral act?

These are not my words. I was quoting from the Vatican document Considerations regarding proposals to give legal recognition to unions between homosexual persons, which was published in 2003 by the Congregation...

[This article is covered only in the Times Premium Section. The video however can be seen freely at the hyperlink above.]

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Independent: The bishops are right!
Sunday, 12 January 2014, 09:31 , by Michael Asciak

Our local bishops are being taken to task because they have dared to declare what is manifestly evident from a moral and anthropological perspective: that homosexual couples should not regularly have the same facility to adopt children as heterosexual couples. Contingency is another matter but, as a rule, it is not in the best interests of a child to be raised by two people of the same sex when they may be raised by two people of opposite sex. Many sociological studies show this to be so, although there are conflicting results in other studies which show, even more, that on this issue it would be better to move with caution. The position of the bishops is a result of the application of natural law morals, and the Catholic Church has based its non-revealed moral stance on natural law for a very long time now.

Malta Today: Muscat urges opposition to change tack on gay adoption

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat insists the ‘Malta Taghna Lkoll’ mantra is alive and results are tangible.
Sunday 12 January 2014 - 12:01 by Jurgen Balzan

Calling on the Nationalist opposition to return to the stand taken by its previous leader Lawrence Gonzi who put children's rights above sexual orientation, Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said the issue should not be politicised.

"Lets not politicise this issue, I certainly disagreed on many thing with former Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi but we both agreed on protecting children and ensuring that experts decide who should adopt," Muscat told Labour supporters gathered in the party's Hamrun club.

Malta Today: Tonio Fenech says he would vote against civil unions bill

Nationalist MP says he would not vote in favour as neither he nor the PN agree with legalising adoption by gay couples
Sunday 12 January 2014 - 15:22 by Daniel Mizzi

Nationalist MP Tonio Fenech says he would not vote in favour of current civil unions bill due to adoption clause

Opposition MP Tonio Fenech has insisted that he will not vote in favour of the current civil unions bill, because it gives same sex couples the right to adopt children.

"If I had to vote on the current civil unions bill, I would vote against because it gives gay couples the right to adopt - a principle which the Nationalist Party disagrees with," Tonio Fenech said while being hosted on Radju Malta's Ghandi xi Nghid.

Saturday, 11 January 2014

RT: Top Russian cleric seeks nationwide referendum on criminalizing male homosexuality
Published time: January 10, 2014 10:21

Opponents of non-traditional sexual orientations during a rally of the Heterosexual Alliance for LGBT Rights in the Field of Mars dedicated to the International Day Against Homophobia 
(RIA Novosti / Igor Russak)

Vsevolod Chaplin maintains that gay relations between men pose a threat to the whole of society, but left it for the people to decide on the possible punishment for such actions.

The head of the Russian Orthodox Church’s department for relations with society has said in an official press comment that the question of criminalizing male homosexuality “deserved discussion in society without any doubt.” He added that since Russia is a democratic country, the majority of its people and not some “external forces” must decide what constitutes a criminal offence and what does not.

Times: Let the bishop speak
Saturday, January 11, 2014, 00:01 by Andrew Borg-Cardona
It’s moderately strange that every time the Catholic Church says anything, assorted commentators get all irritable about what is said. (Above is a stock picture taken during the divorce referendum campaign in 2011.) Photo: Darrin Zammit Lupi
It’s moderately strange that every time the Catholic Church says anything, assorted commentators get all irritable about what is said. (Above is a stock picture taken during the divorce referendum campaign in 2011.) Photo: Darrin Zammit Lupi
I. M. Beck had come out in favour of divorce, though not without some misgivings because, by so doing, he was giving aid and comfort to that Pullicino Orlando fellow who has since demonstrated that he was not worthy of it. Nailing his colours to that particular mast was not a move which had rendered said Beck a pin-up for the clerical gentlemen at the Curiae (plural of Curias...) but one survives.

Times: Le Saux support for Hitzlsperger
Saturday, January 11, 2014, 00:01 by Martyn Ziegler

Thomas Hitzlsperger in action for Germany.

Graeme Le Saux, the former England defender appointed to the En-glish FA’s new equality panel, has welcomed Thomas Hitzlsperger’s decision to reveal he is gay but insists there should be no pressure on footballers to come out while they are still playing.

Le Saux, a member of the FA’s new Inclusion Advisory Board (IAB), had his life made a misery by abuse from players and fans during the 1990s even though he is not gay.

iNews Malta: Fenech jivvota kontra anke jekk il-PN jitolbu mod ieħor
14:37 | 11.01.2014

L-eks Ministru tal-Finanzi, Tonio Fenech qal li hu se jivvota kontra l-liġi tal-unjoni ċivili kif inhi. Anke jekk il-Partit Nazzjonalista jitolbu mod ieħor. Fenech saħaq dwar l-importanza li jiddaħlu l-emendi tal-Partit Nazzjonalista.

Tonio Fenech iddikjara dan waqt li kien qiegħed jitkellem fil-programm Għandi xi Ngħid fuq Radju Malta. Huwa kien mistoqsi mill-preżentatur Andrew Azzopardi dwar x'jagħmel jekk il-Partit Nazzjonalista jitolbu jivvota favur il-liġi kif inhi llum. Fenech wieġeb “bla dubju li nivvota kontra.” Huwa kompla jgħid li anke l-Partit Nazzjonalista huwa kontra l-liġi kif proposta.

Independent: MPs must respect secular state, not religion – Alfred Sant
Thursday, 09 January 2014, 10:28

When somebody has been elected a deputy of the people in a secular and democratic state, and must now vote legislation in Parliament, the values that he/she needs to respect should be those of the secular state, with the rights, duties and liberties attached to them, applicable to all citizens, independently of their religious beliefs, Alfred Sant writes today

Book: I am John I am Paul: A Story of Two Soldiers in Ancient Rome

by Mark Tedesco

"Adventure, intrigue, faith, commitment, love and hate and everything between! Mark Tedesco has done it again, fashioning what is arguably his best work yet! He entices you on a phenomenal journey into the fascinating lives of two 4th century Roman soldiers, John and Paul, in a tale of loyalty and love that grabs you by the throat from the very first sentence and holds you spellbound, gasping for air as you're swept from chapter to chapter with barely a moment to breathe. An unbelievable marriage of fact and fiction that will leave you applauding or appalled but never bored or indifferent. A must read!" -Tony McEwing, Fox News

Mark Tedesco

Times: Utah puts same-sex marriages on hold pending appeal
Thursday, January 9, 2014, 06:58

Utah will not recognize, at least for now, the marriages of gay couples who rushed to wed after a federal judge's ruling briefly legalized gay unions in the conservative, predominantly Mormon state, the governor's office said.

The state's decision comes as a blow to roughly 1,400 same-sex couples who tied the knot after US District Judge Robert Shelby ruled on Dec. 20 that a state ban on gay marriage violated the US Constitution. His ruling was later put on hold by the US Supreme Court pending an appeal.

Independent UK: Thomas Hitzlsperger: Former Germany international hopes revelation about his sexuality will 'move the discussion forward'

Thursday 09 January 2014, PA

Thomas Hitzlsperger hopes that revealing he is gay will advance the “discussion” about sexuality in sport.

The former Aston Villa, West Ham, Everton and Germany midfielder, who ended his playing career in September due to persistent injuries, revealed his sexuality on Wednesday.

In an interview which will be published in full in Die Zeit newspaper on Thursday, the 31-year-old said,: "I'm coming out about my homosexuality because I want to move the discussion about homosexuality among professional sportspeople forwards."

Malta Today: Gay marriage temporarily suspended in US state

American top court temporarily halts gay marriage in Utah.
Tuesday 7 January 2014 - 08:47

The U.S. Supreme Court has temporarily blocked same-sex marriages in Utah, less than three weeks after they were approved by a lower court.

The court issued a brief order on Monday blocking any new same-sex unions in the state.

YouTube: New York Times: Vows: Mr. Duckett and Dr. Jones

Published on 30 Oct 2013

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Together 46 years, Lewis Duckett and Billy Jones wrote coded letters to each other during Dr. Jones's deployment in Vietnam. They adopted a baby, became grandfathers and then, finally, got married.

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Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Independent: Voting in favour of civil union bill ‘gravely immoral’
Sunday, 05 January 2014, 10:00

Malta must not open up to gay adoptions

The Maltese Church is worried about the bill being discussed by Parliament that would treat as almost equal under all aspects, adoption included, gay unions and civil marriages.

Pope Francis himself has expressed his ‘sadness’ at this legislative development, repeating that this constitutes an ‘anthropological regression’, as he had written as Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 2010 in a letter addressed to Justo Carbajales, director of the Department for Lay people at the bishops’ conference of Argentina, who had organized a protest march against the law approving gay ‘marriage’, which was later approved by the Argentinean Parliament.

Monday, 6 January 2014

David Gold: Chilean Senate to discuss same-sex marriage

In Chile, a bill providing for the legalization of same-gender civil unions is now before the Senate and after 11 March 2014 a national debate on the legalization of same-gender civil marriage will probably begin

6.1.2014 by David Gold

1.  During the campaign leading up to the presidential election of 2006, Michelle Bachelet and Sebastián Piñera, the two leading candidates, expressed support for the legalization of gender-neutral civil unions (though see paragraph 13). Bachelet won and with her election she became the first open supporter of marriage equality ever to be the elected the head of government of any country in the world.

Times: Catholic lawmakers have moral duty to vote against Civil Unions Bill - bishop
Saturday, January 4, 2014, 15:50

A Catholic lawmaker has a moral duty to express his opposition ‘clearly and publicly’ and vote against a bill proposing same sex unions, Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna told Avvenire, the Italian bishops’ newspaper, in an interview published today.

In his interview Mgr Scicluna said that voting in favor of a law so harmful to society’s common good ‘is a gravely immoral act’.

Independent: Catholic MPs voting in favour of gay marriage bill will commit 'grave immoral act'
Saturday, 04 January 2014, 12:06

Bishop Charles Scicluna has warned Catholic MPs who vote in favour of the ‘gay marriage bill’ that they will be committing a “grave immoral act” in doing so.

Mgr Scicluna told the Church-run paper Avvenire that in the lead-up to the March general election, both political parties promised the world to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual(LGBT) communities.

Malta Today: Catholic lawmaker has ‘moral duty’ to vote against civil union law – Auxiliary Bishop

Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna says a Catholic MP voting in favour ‘of a law so harmful to the common good of society is a gravely immoral act’.
Saturday 4 January 2014 - 12:02 by Miriam Dalli

A Catholic MP who supports the Civil Union Bill and the right for same-sex couples to adopt would be committing "a gravely immoral act", according to Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna.

In an interview with Italian media Avvenire on the Civil Unions Bill being discussed in parliament, Scicluna said the Catholic lawmaker had the "moral duty" to vote against the bill.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Malta Today: Equality commission says same-sex families, gay adoption is human right

‘Everyone has the right to found a family, including access to apply for adoption or assisted procreation, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.’
Tuesday 31 December 2013 - 15:18

Equality commission NCPE has given full backing to civil union laws

The equality commission has called statements "against the recognition of same-sex families" may lead to unequal treatment of persons based on their perceived sexual orientation, or gender identity.

The National Commission for the Promotion of Equality (NCPE) issued its statement following reports of claims by Auxiliary Bishop Charles Scicluna, who has been a vocal critic of the government's plans to introduce civil unions and gay adoption.