Magazine article National Catholic Reporter

Archdiocese Denies Enrollment of Student with Same-Sex Parents

Magazine article National Catholic Reporter

Archdiocese Denies Enrollment of Student with Same-Sex Parents

Article excerpt

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI * The decision by the Kansas City, Kansas, Archdiocese to deny admission of a kindergarten student with same-sex parents drew national attention and rekindled tensions between the Catholic Church and LGBT community

Parishioners at St. Ann Catholic Church in Prairie Village, Kansas, wrote a letter March 1 asking Archbishop Joseph Naumann and Superintendent of Schools Kathleen O'Hara to "prayerfully reconsider" their decision earlier this year to deny a same-sex couple's child enrollment in kindergarten at their parish school, and its general policy barring children of same-sex unions admittance into the archdiocese's 42 Catholic schools.

"It is our belief that Christ's message of inclusion, acceptance, mercy, and love should first and foremost guide such decisions," read the letter. A corresponding petition has been signed by more than 1,200 people, about half of them members of St. Ann, according to the Kansas City Star.

The enrollment decision was made in February and sparked "much discussion" and "strong opinions on this matter," said Fr. Craig Maxim, pastor at St. Ann, in a Feb. 27 letter to the school community. He said he consulted with the archdiocese, "which advised against admission."

The archdiocese in a statement defended its decision, saying officials felt it was not respectful to individuals who disagree with "essential elements" of church moral teaching, "nor is it fair, loving or compassionate to place their children in an educational environment where the values of the parents and the core principles of the school conflict. …

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