- The Washington Times - Friday, March 10, 2006

BOSTON — The Boston Archdiocese’s Catholic Charities said yesterday it would stop providing adoption services because of a state law allowing homosexuals to adopt children.

The social services arm of the Roman Catholic archdiocese, which has provided adoption services for the state for nearly two decades, said the law runs counter to church teachings on homosexuality.

“The world was very different when Charities began this ministry at the threshold of the 20th century,” the Rev. J. Bryan Hehir, president of Catholic Charities, said in a joint statement with trustees Chairman Jeffrey Kaneb.

“The world changed often, and we adapted the ministry to meet changing times and needs. At all times, we sought to place the welfare of children at the heart of our work.

“But now, we have encountered a dilemma we cannot resolve,” they stated.

The state’s four Catholic bishops said earlier this month that the law threatens the church’s religious freedom by forcing it to do something it considers immoral.

Eight members of Catholic Charities board later stepped down in protest of the bishops’ stance. The 42-member board had voted unanimously in December to continue considering homosexual households for adoptions.

Catholic Charities has been involved in adoptions for close to a century, but has had a contract with the state for the past two decades. Its contract with the state expires June 30.

In that time, Catholic Charities has placed 720 children in adoptive homes, including 13 who were placed with same-sex couples, Catholic Charities said.

In a 2003 document, the Vatican said adoption by homosexual couples was “gravely immoral,” and that children placed in such homes “would be deprived of the experience of either fatherhood or motherhood.”

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