“Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed a District Court’s decision that struck down Virginia’s constitutional marriage amendment. This action reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of the intrinsic nature of marriage and is an injustice to Virginia voters. As Catholic bishops, we once again affirm what our 2,000-year-old faith teaches: that all men and women are endowed by our Creator with equal dignity and worth. We maintain that those with same-sex attractions must be treated with respect and sensitivity. However, by rejecting the state amendment which affirms marriage as the unique institution between one man and one woman, the Court seeks to redefine an age-old institution, rooted in natural law, and extend a right that does not – and cannot – exist between people of the same sex.
“Marriage has survived for countless generations because it uniquely benefits the common good by recognizing the union of two different but complementary individuals – that is a man and a woman – who, by their union, may create a family. Indeed, by its very nature this institution is ordered toward the regeneration and survival of the human race. For that reason Virginia’s constitution rightly recognizes the unique contributions marriage – the union of one man and one woman – makes to children and to the common good. We will continue to affirm the truth about marriage, the lifelong union of one man and one woman, as well as the importance of marriage to the common good. As pastors, teachers, and faith leaders, we can do nothing less. We will continue to fight this unjust ruling.” – Bishop Paul Loverde of the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, in a joint statement with Bishop Francis DiLorenzo.