wants to legalize same-sex marriages
Ottawa does not appeal
On June 12, 2003, the Ontario Court of Appeal declared the current
definition of marriage in Canada — “one man and one woman” — in
violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights. It ordered the City of
Toronto to issue marriage licenses immediately to the same-sex couples
involved in the case.
days later, Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien announced that his
Government will not appeal the decision of the Ontario Court, and will
move toward legalizing same-sex marriages. “We will not be appealing
the recent decision on the definition of marriage. Rather, we will be
proposing legislation that will protect the right of churches and
religious organizations to sanctify marriage as they define it. (That means religious groups will have the right to
refuse to perform gay marriage ceremonies.)
At same time, we'll ensure that our legislation includes a legally
recognized same-sex couple. As soon as the legislation is drafted, it
will be referred to the Supreme Court. After that, it will be put to a
free vote in the House of Commons.”
to appeal means that we have recognized the definition that has been
developed by the courts,” said Federal Justice Minister Martin Cauchon. Both Mr. Chrétien and Mr.
Cauchon said they were comfortable with the decision not to appeal. “For
me, we have a Charter of Rights. There is evolution in society, and
according to the interpretation of the courts, they concluded these
unions should be legal in Canada,” Mr. Chrétien said.
While the Justice Minister said he would like a vote to be held before
Mr. Chrétien retires next February, the Supreme Court could easily take
at least a year to issue an opinion.
Support for Chretien's announcement was unanimous among his cabinet. This
is surprising, since only four years ago (June 9, 1999), the members of
the House of Commons affirmed, by a vote of 216 to 55, “That, in the opinion of
this House, it is necessary, in light of public debate around recent
court decisions, to state that marriage is and should remain the union
of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others, and Parliament
will take all necessary steps within the jurisdiction of the Parliament
of Canada to preserve this definition of marriage in Canada.”
is still resistance from many Liberal backbenchers and several MPs in
the opposition, so since Chretien said there would be a free vote
(Members of Parliament will not be bound by party lines, but can vote
according to their conscience), we see how important this vote will be,
and how important it is for all Canadians who still care for the defense
of the Christian definition of marriage to write to their MPs.
At least one province, Alberta, has said it will invoke the
Constitution's notwithstanding clause if Ottawa tries forcing it to hand
out same-sex marriage licences. “If
there is any move to sanctify and
legalize same-sex marriages, we will use the notwithstanding clause,
period. End of story,” Alberta's Premier Ralph Klein said.
Dave Hancock, Alberta's Justice Minister, added: “To
take an institution that is near and dear to so many people, and change
the definition in this way, is going too far.”
Vic Toews, Canadian Alliance justice critic, accused the Federal
Government of abdicating its responsibility and making a “grave error
in judgment” by allowing the courts, rather than Parliament, to
redefine the traditional definition of marriage.
If Canada recognizes same-sex marriages, it would become only the third
country in the world to do so. The others are Belgium and the
Netherlands. But Canada's situation, morally speaking, would be far
worse: unlike the other two counties, the Ontario marriage registrations
are not restricted to Canadian citizens, and there are no adoption
The reaction of the Bishops
In a letter dated June 19, addressed to Prime Minister Jean Chretien,
Bishop Jacques Berthelet, President of the Canadian Conference of
Catholic Bishops (along with 15 other Canadian Bishops, members of its
Permanent Council), strongly denounced Chretien's decision to refuse to
appeal Ontario's court ruling, and legalize same-sex marriages:
Mr. Prime Minister:
the name of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, and with the
support of its Permanent Council, allow me to say that I am deeply
concerned and profoundly disappointed with respect to the decision that
you have taken not to appeal the rulings of the Appeal Courts of Ontario
and British Columbia regarding the redefinition of marriage. The
prospect of the bill that you are preparing to present to the House of
Commons in support of the redefinition of marriage by including same-sex
partners would mean a devaluation of traditional marriage as the basis
of the family and as an essential institution for the stability and
equilibrium of society.
understood as the lasting union of a man and woman to the exclusion of
others, pre-exists the State. Because it pre-exists the State, and
because it is fundamental for society, the institution of marriage
cannot be modified, whether by the Charter of Rights, the State, or a
court of law.
point is not that, because same-sex partners cannot have access to
marriage, there would be discrimination. Rather, it is the contrary that
is true. Enlarging and thereby altering the definition of marriage in
order to include same-sex partners discriminates against heterosexual
marriage and the family, which are thus deprived of their social and
legal recognition as the fundamental and irreplaceable basis of society.
unions cannot be considered as marriage. The definition of marriage that
has been introduced by the Ontario Court of Appeal leads simply to a
legal confusion which a rigorous analysis by the Supreme Court should be
capable of denouncing, if there is no undue haste and improvisation.
Prime Minister, I would very much hope that the legacy you are leaving
does not include legislation that represents an assault on common sense,
an assault on the values of societies which are advanced but not amoral,
and an assault on the liberties of men and women of good will.
pray that you will have the courage to act in conformity with the law
that is inscribed within human nature, and which is not affected by
every wind that blows.” — Bishop
It is easy to see how absurd this decision to legalize same-sex marriages
is. God created our first parents Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. As
Archbishop Adam Exner of Vancouver put it: "If
one thinks of a child growing up with two mommies or two daddies, then
what will the consequences be?" The family is an
institution created by God, prior to any State, and cannot be modified
by any State or law.
To legalize vice is the height of perversion.
and Gomorrah were destroyed by fire because their inhabitants commited
homosexual acts. Do our lawmakers bring a similar chastisement upon our
nation, by defying God's law as the people of Sodom did?
These huge affronts to God's law and natural law show how advanced the
enemies of God are in their plans to destroy Christianity in our country
and in every nation on earth.
The Charter of Rights
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms begins as follows: “Whereas
Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God
and the rule of law...”
It happens that God forbids the practice of vice against nature. In the
name of personal freedom, those who practice this vice against nature
would like to change the definition of marriage, under the pretext that
this law discriminates against them.
is nothing discriminatory
in the present definition of marriage in Canada. All men and women in
Canada have the right to contract a real marriage between a man and a
woman, according to the law of the nation, and the order established by
God. Unions against nature between people of the same sex are not real
marriages, but public sins and scandals, which contravene the law of God
and the law of the land. The lawmakers who hear their demands ,and
approve of them, are out of place in Parliament.
Catholic Church forbids the faithful to vote for candidates who favor
laws that go against the Commandments of God. Homosexuality
is a vice that is denounced many times in the Bible.
judges who give decisions based on their personal opinions, who demand
to change the law instead of following it, are also out of place, and
should be dismissed from their posts.
In the name of personal freedom, what would you say if I decided to
contest the highway code, and have it changed, because I have decided
that I want to drive on the left side of the road, instead of the right
side? My freedom is limited by the law of the country. An unjust law
does not bind in conscience, but a just law does.
Canada's 2001 census shows that of the 8.4 million families in Canada,
5.9 million (70%) are married couples; 1.3 million (16%) are
lone-parents; 1.2 million (14%) are common-law partners, and 34,200
(0.5%) are same-sex partners.
And it is this infinitesimal minority of half a percent that makes an
uproar to change the criminal code, and modify the law on the definition
of marriage which has been established for centuries in Canada, on
logic, natural law, and faith in God.
A change to hate-crime law
And this is not all! This minority does not like to be reminded that
homosexuality is condemned by God in the Bible. They would also like the
Canadian law to forbid anyone to condemn homosexuality: MP Svend
Robinson of British Columbia (who was the first member of Canadian
Parliament to openly admit he is gay) presented in the House of Commons
Bill C-250, which seeks to add “sexual orientation” to Canada's
hate-crime law. Canada's Criminal Code defines hate propaganda as
anything that “incites hatred against any identifiable group.” Bill
C-250 seeks to replace Subsection 318(4) of the Criminal Code
by the following:
In this section, ``identifiable group'' means any section of the public
distinguished by colour, race, religion, ethnic origin or sexual
This bill has passed the level of its second reading, and is presently
debated before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and
Human Rights. If
this bill is adopted, gay rights activists could use it against anyone
who questions their lifestyle – even to the point of having the courts
ban as “hate literature” passages in the Bible, or articles in any
religious magazine, that condemn homosexuality.
On April 15, 2003, the General Secretary of the Canadian Conference of
Catholic Bishops wrote a letter to Canada's Justice Minister Martin
Cauchon regarding Bill C-250. Here are some excerpts:
is well known that the Catholic Church teaches unequivocally that sexual
behaviour between people of the same sex is morally wrong, and in no
circumstances can be approved. At the same time, Church teaching also requires unequivocally that
persons who are homosexual “must be accepted with respect, compassion,
and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard
should be avoided ” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, article 2358).
concern with Bill C-250 is not about the objectives of prohibiting the
incitement or willful
promotion of hatred or the advocacy of genocide. What troubles us is the
possibility that someone who finds the expression of the beliefs of the
Catholic Church on the sexual conduct of homosexual persons too blunt or
too harsh will invoke the Criminal Code to silence the teaching.
“Since the current provisions of the Criminal Code with respect to hate
propaganda are thirty years old and predate the Charter, we suggest that
it would be unwise to proceed with the amendment proposed in Bill C-250
by a private member's bill. Would it not be better for your Ministry to
do the appropriate research to establish if this particular limit on
freedom of expression is required and, if the answer is yes, to make
sure that complementary amendments are also made to protect the freedom
of Canadians to express their religious beliefs and Church teaching
without fear of criminal prosecution?”
On December 12, 2002, the Court of Queen's Bench in Saskatchewan ruled
that a man who placed references to Bible verses on homosexuality into a
newspaper ad was guilty of inciting hatred.
On December 20, 2002, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that a British
Columbia school board was wrong to ban three books depicting same-sex
parents from kindergarten and Grade 1 classrooms. In a 7-2 judgment, the
court said the ban imposed in 1997 violated provincial legislation that
requires the public school system to be strictly secular and
non-sectarian. Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, writing for the
majority, said the board, in refusing to authorize use of the books in
early primary grades, had bowed to the views of parents who opposed
homosexuality on religious grounds. That meant it was “letting the
religious views of a certain part of the community trump the need to
show equal respect for the values of other members of the community.”
A vice to be corrected
Homosexuality is a vice, just like pedophilia or drunkenness. Nobody will
kill or attack a drunkard because he has this vice; one will rather try
to help him to quit this vice. Perhaps if this person had been educated
in his childhood against drunkenness, he would not have to fight to free
himself from this bondage that degrades him and society as well. If
drunkards were allowed to drink with children, what a mess it would be!
So it is the duty of parents, schools,
society, and governments to denounce these deviations, and to warn
children against sins against nature which, beside infringing on God's
law, often bring venereal diseases that are sometimes incurable.
Since the creation of the world, we know that in order to transmit life,
we need two people of the opposite sex. Even animals are bound to this
law of nature, and they do not transgress it. Two men cannot transmit
life. A man and a woman complete each other, whereas two men or two
women do not, and never will.
St. Paul wrote: “For
the time will come when people will not endure sound doctrine, but
having itching ears, they will accumulate for themselves teachers to
suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth
and wander into myths.” (2 Tim. 4:3-4.)
Let us ask God to enlighten and convert our statesmen, so they may come
back to common sense, to truth and wisdom. And let us protest as much as
we can against these bills that are promoted to reverse Christian
values, and adapt our laws to the critera of a future godless world
government. If we do nothing, we can expect to lose all of our freedoms,
and be ruled by a fist of iron.
encourage all our readers to write to their MPs to protest the
legalization of same-sex marriages, and Bill C-250. The address for
Name of MP
This article was published in the May-June-July, 2003 issue of “Michael”.