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Catholic School Discriminates Against Child of Lesbian Couple

Catholic School Discriminates Against Child of Lesbian Couple

A Catholic school in Hingham, Mass.  has withdrawn its acceptance of an 8-year-old boy with lesbian parents, under the grounds that their relationship was "in discord" with church teachings. The mother of the boy said she planned to send her son to third grade at St. Paul Elementary School but she learned that her son's acceptance was later rescinded.  She was notified of the decision during a conference call with the school's principal Cynthia Duggan and the parish priest, the Rev. James Rafferty.

A Catholic school in Hingham, Mass.  has withdrawn its acceptance of an 8-year-old boy with lesbian parents, under the grounds that their relationship was "in discord" with church teachings, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday.

The mother of the boy said she planned to send her son to third grade at St. Paul Elementary School but she learned that her son's acceptance was later rescinded.  She was notified of the decision during a conference call with the school's principal Cynthia Duggan and the parish priest, the Rev. James Rafferty.

"I'm accustomed to discrimination at my age and with my experience as a gay woman," the mother told the AP. "But I didn't expect it against my child."  The mother spoke to reporters under the condition of anonymity out of fear that the publicity would negatively impact her son.

During the call the priest said that her relationship "was in discord with the teachings of the Catholic Church." The principal added that teachers wouldn't be prepared to answer questions her son might have because the school's teachings about marriage conflict with what he sees in his family.

Rafferty and Duggan did not respond to requests for comment.

The church's stance against homosexual relationships was no shock, but the woman said she didn't think it was a deal-breaker, given the church's "many variations of tolerance," such as its inclusion of families of divorce, which the church doesn't recognize.

"There are many different non-traditional families that fall under the umbrella of the Catholic Church, and I guess we assumed we would fall under one of those," she said.

 

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Leslie Dobbins