A sign posted at a Catholic church in Buffalo, New York, was intended as a message of support and inclusion for children growing up in families with a step-parent. But thanks to right-wing haters, the sign has been removed.
The pastor of Saints Columba-Brigid Roman Catholic Church put a sign on the message board in front of the church that read “Jesus had 2 Dads and he turned out just fine.” The reference, of course, was to God, who Christians believe is the actual father of Jesus, and Joseph, who raised Jesus as his son — a “step-father” of sorts. But when anti-gay bigots got wind of the sign, which could also be interpreted as supporting same-sex marriage, which the Catholic Church opposes, the church was forced to remove it.
John Vennari, who edits Catholic Family News, heard about the sign from a friend, who sent him a picture of it. “The sign was so scandalous I had a hard time believing it was not photo-shopped,” Vennari wrote. He then went to the church and took his own picture.
Vennari doesn’t see the sign as something that affirms Jesus’s message of inclusion. He says:
This pro-homosexual sign effectively mocks the Blessed Trinity, mocks the Hypostatic Union, mocks the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph – some of the most sacred components of our Catholic Faith.
And so the controversy began. Calls from around the world began to pour into the offices of the Buffalo Diocese, according to WKBW. Bishop Malone of the diocese read Vennari’s article and ordered the sign removed. The church now sports a sign which reads,”Walmart isn’t the only saving place.”
Bishop Malone released the following statement:
As soon as I learned of this sign, I took immediate action to have it removed. The pastor of SS. Columba-Brigid Parish told me that the ‘2 Dads’ were meant to refer to a child who has both a father and stepfather. However, given the potential for the meaning of this message to be misunderstood and even perceived in a heretical way, it was immediately removed.
Should it really matter to the diocese what the meaning of the sign was? Whether it was talking about children with step-parents, as the pastor said, or about same-sex couples, isn’t the message one that is good and important for children to hear — that as long as there is love, it doesn’t matter who your parents are?
Here is a report on the controversy, from WKBW:
Featured image via WKBW screen capture