6.14.2005

Catholic School to Gay Parents: Stay Home



School Tells Gay Parents To Return to Closet

from 365Gay

COSTA MESA, California - A Southern California school has told a same-sex couple who have children in the facility not to appear together at school functions.

St. John the Baptist School, in Costa Mesa, has adopted a new policy that calls for parents to display "appropriate conduct, in order to support the school's mission and provide positive role models to our students."

The school is affiliated with the Roman Catholic diocese of Orange County.

Earlier this year, St John's ran into opposition from a parent group after the school allowed a gay couple to enroll their children. The group demanded that the school accept only families that pledge to abide by Catholic teachings.

School officials rejected the demand saying that a family's background "does not constitute an absolute obstacle to enrollment in the school," further angering the parent group which took their case to the bishop.

Neither the school nor the same-sex couple have commented on the issue since, but a May 6 memo obtained by the Los Angeles Times this week outlines the new policy.

"The children adopted by a same-sex couple" may enroll, the memo says, "on the condition that the same-sex couple agree not to present themselves as a couple at school functions."

The Times also quotes some parents as saying that Sister Mary Vianney, the school's principal for 31 years, has not had her contract renewed because she objected to the new requirement.

A lawyer for the parents who object to the children of same-parents attending the school said his clients welcome Vianney's departure, and he had a message for other parents who wanted her stay on.

"This parish would be better served if they would have a prayer vigil in support of the teachings of the church," Michael J. Sundstedt, told the Times.

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