Archbishop Cordileone’s March for Marriage

by Maggie Gallagher

Here’s Archbishop Cordileone at the March for Marriage on Capitol Hill earlier today:

 . . . In 1839, Jeanne Jugan met one such priceless child of God, a blind old crippled woman whom nobody cared for. That night, Jeanne carried the woman home to her apartment, and put her to sleep in her own bed. From this profound encounter was born the Little Sisters of the Poor, who even today are loving, caring for, and providing homes for thousands of elderly who deserve dignity as well as care. These are the very nuns who now face the possibility of being shut out of spreading the love of Jesus to the needy because of their refusal to comply with a health-care mandate that violates their moral convictions, convictions which stand on the truth of basic human dignity.

Let us, then, take our cue from the best our predecessors in faith have inspired, and not humanity’s frequent failings and sins. Like them, we now in our own time need to proclaim and live the truth with charity and compassion as it applies to us today: the truth of a united family based on the union of the children’s father and mother in marriage as the foundational good of society.  Every child comes from a man and a woman, and has a right, a natural human right, to know and be known by, to love and be loved by, their own mother and father . . . 

Yes, it is a foundational truth, and one to which we must witness by lives lived in conformity to it, and which we must proclaim with love. Love for those millions of loving single mothers and fathers who struggle to pick up the pieces of their lives and succeed in creating loving homes for their children — they need and deserve our love, affirmation and support.  But also love for the husband struggling with fidelity, love for the woman who feels abandoned and pressured into abortion, love for the teenager struggling to believe in the heroic vision of love that makes sense of chastity, love for the single person who cannot find a mate, love for the childless couple trying to cope with infertility, love for the wife who finds herself nursing a sick husband in her marriage bed, love for the young person trying to navigate through sexual-identity issues and may feel alienated from the Church because of it, maybe even because of the sort of treatment received from some who profess to be believers. To all of you, I say: know that you are a child of God, that you are called to heroic love and that with God’s help you can do it, that we love you and want to support you in living your God-given call.

Let us not forget: We must also proclaim this truth especially with love for those who disagree with us on this issue, and most of all, for those who are hostile to us because of it . . . We must not allow the angry rhetoric to coopt us into a culture of hate.

Yes, we must show love toward all of these and more. Love is the answer. But love in the truth. The truth is that every child comes from a mother and a father, and to deliberately deprive a child of knowing and being loved by his or her mother and father is an outright injustice. This is our very nature; no law can change it.

UPDATE: The archdiocese posts his speech, “Building a Civilization of Truth and Love.”

Will Nancy Pelosi read it before Sunday Mass I wonder?