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DignityUSA, the nation’s foremost organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Catholics and our friends and families, expressed profound disappointment with California’s Supreme Court decision that upheld Proposition 8’s ban on marriage between gay and lesbian couples. However, the group noted that the Court’s allowing the 18,000-plus same-sex marriages that occurred before the ban took effect to stand was a sign of hope.

DignityUSA Executive Director Marianne Duddy-Burke stated, “It is tragic for everyone in California that discriminatory language has been allowed to stand in the state’s constitution. We call for the elimination of language that limits civil marriage to opposite-sex couples. DignityUSA pledges to continue to educate people about the importance of marriage equality, and will continue to offer spiritual and emotional support to gays and lesbians and our families in the face of this temporary setback. We urge a peaceful response, and a renewed commitment to justice in the face of this decision.

“The fact that gay marriage continues to exist in California, and that California is, in fact, home to more married gay and lesbian people than any other state, is a hopeful sign.” Duddy-Burke continued, “People will see married same-sex couples going about their lives, contributing to their communities, families, and workplaces, and will come to see that it is unjust to allow some of us to be married, and to deny that right to others, just based on timing.

“People of faith, including Catholics, are increasingly coming to realize that marriage equality is simply about love. It’s about ensuring that all families have the same protections and responsibilities under the law. All loving couples, whether gay or straight should be able to have their commitments recognized by the law,” she said.