Catholic schools in Massachusetts order their 5,000 students to use the names, pronouns, and washrooms of their biological sex
- Students must act in manner ‘consistent with their biological sex,’ new rules say
By James Reinl, Social Affairs Correspondent, For Dailymail.Com
A Catholic school district in Massachusetts has ruled that its 5,000 students must use the names and pronouns they used at birth, in the latest clash between the church and radical gender ideology.
The ruling from the Diocese of Worcester and approved by Bishop Robert McManus is set to affect 21 schools in and around the central Massachusetts city and start when students got back to class for the fall semester.
Under the new guidelines, students must conduct themselves in a manner ‘consistent with their biological sex,’ including the bathrooms they use and the sports teams on which they compete.
Catholic Archdiocese sues Colorado over right to exclude LGBTQ people from universal preschool
State’s non-discrimination requirements “directly conflict with St. Mary’s, St. Bernadette’s, and the Archdiocese’s religious beliefs,” the lawsuit says.
By Elizabeth Hernandez | firstname.lastname@example.org | The Denver Post
The Denver Catholic Archdiocese along with two of its parishes is suing the state alleging their First Amendment rights are violated because their desire to exclude LGBTQ parents, staff and kids from Archdiocesan preschools keeps them from participating in Colorado’s new universal preschool program.
The program is intended to provide every child 15 hours per week of state-funded preschool in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten. To be eligible, though, schools must meet the state’s non-discrimination requirements.
The Denver Archdiocese, St. Mary Catholic Parish in Littleton and St. Bernadette Catholic Parish in Lakewood filed suit against Lisa Roy, executive director of the Colorado Department of Early Childhood, and Dawn Odean, director of Colorado’s Universal Preschool Program, on Wednesday.
The Denver Archdiocese and the Colorado Department of Early Childhood could not immediately be reached for comment.
“The Department is purporting to require all preschool providers to accept any applicant without regard to a student or family’s religion, sexual orientation, or gender identity, and to prohibit schools from “discriminat[ing] against any person” on the same bases,” the lawsuit said. “These requirements directly conflict with St. Mary’s, St. Bernadette’s, and the Archdiocese’s religious beliefs and their religious obligations as entities that carry out the Catholic Church’s mission of Catholic education in northern Colorado.”
The Denver Archdiocese said in the suit they do not believe adhering to their religious beliefs against accepting LGBTQ people qualifies as discrimination. The Denver Post published written guidance last year issued by the Denver Archdiocese to its Catholic schools on the handling of LGBTQ issues, including telling administrators not to enroll or re-enroll transgender or gender non-conforming students and explaining that gay parents should be treated differently than heterosexual couples.
The lawsuit said St. Mary’s and St. Bernadette’s each require their preschool staff sign annual Archdiocese-approved employment contracts affirming that staff abide by traditional Catholic teachings on life, sexuality and marriage. They require parents who send their kids to their preschools “to understand and accept the community’s worldview and convictions regarding Catholic moral issues like life, marriage, and human sexuality,” the lawsuit said.
The Denver Archdiocese argues in the lawsuit that the state has “cornered the market” for preschool services by providing universal funding and any preschool providers who don’t participate will be “severely disadvantaged” and forced to charge “significantly” higher fees, disadvantaging low-income families whose children attend Archdiocesan schools.
“Colorado did not have to create a universal preschool funding program, but in doing so it cannot implement that program in a way that excludes certain religious groups and providers based on their sincerely held religious beliefs,” the lawsuit said.
The lawsuit said enrolling children with gay parents into an Archdiocesan school “is likely to lead to intractable conflicts” because a “Catholic school cannot treat a same-sex couple as a family equivalent to the natural family without compromising its mission and Catholic identity.”
The lawsuit is seeking a jury trial and for the state to reverse its decision and allow the Denver Archdiocese to participate in the universal preschool program while giving them the ability to exclude LGBTQ students, staff and parents from their schools.