Amid what many American bishops saw as a rather dismal election with regard to traditional “faith and values” issues, several prelates during their recent meeting in Baltimore pointed to Proposition 8 in California as a ray of light.
“Strengthening marriage” is one of five top priorities the U.S. bishops have identified through 2011. The success of an anti-gay marriage measure in California, usually seen as among the “bluest” of the blue states, seemed to embolden the bishops in defense of marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
“Marriage is not an institution created by the church, or by the state,” said Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, in remarks to reporters in Baltimore. “It’s a natural institution, a universal institution.”
“To imagine that we can change it by a vote or by a court decision is an example of hubris,” George said, arguing that the victory of Proposition 8 shows that “people recognize that … people feel that.”