NEWS NOTES: Gay Politician Challenges Polish Church; Profile of Author Richard Rodriguez; And More

Here are some news items that you may find of interest:

1. A gay atheist in Poland is taking on the country’s anti-LGBT, right-wing governing party which has had close ties to the nation’s Catholic leadership. Robert Biedron, who is one of Poland’s first openly gay politicians, announced the formation of a new political party. He has rejected the idea that the nation is a Catholic one, promising to end tax breaks for the Church and religious instruction in schools. The Telegraph quoted him, “Ever since Law and Justice [the party currently running the government] came to power a lot of headlines in the international media covering Polish politics start with a term ‘Catholic Poland’. It’s easy, catchy and feeds on stereotypes but the problem is that it is not really true.”

2. America Magazine profiled Richard Rodriguez, an award-winning author who is a gay Catholic. The profile reported that while Rodriguez knew he ways gay “at a very young age, he would not define his adolescence as a gay one but a Catholic one.” It also acknowledged his partner, Jim. Rodriguez was a keynote speaker at New Ways Ministry’s Seventh National Symposium in Baltimore in 2012. To read more from the profile, click here.

3. A petition at England’s Oxford University calling for a Catholic professor to be fired for holding negative views on homosexuality has been rejected by administrators, reported The Irish Post. Professor John Finnis, a law professor, had previously written that homosexuality is “destructive of human character and relationships” along with other similar statements. But Oxford officials said that these writings were protected by academic freedom and did not constitute harassment as a result.

4. Interfaith Voices, an independent radio program, interviewed Erin O. White, a gay Catholic who wrote Given Up For You: A Memoir of Love, Belonging and Belief. To listen to the interview, click here.

5. The Wisconsin Supreme Court decided that a professor terminated by Marquette University should be reinstated. Professor John C. Adams was dismissed for writing a blog post in which he criticized a teaching assistant for not allowing students to discuss marriage equality . The case was primarily a contract dispute, leaving open constitutional questions about employment practices in Catholic higher education, reported the National Catholic Reporter.

Robert Shine, New Ways Ministry, March 2, 2019

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