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Controversial Catholic program for gays begins in Connecticut


The Archdiocese of Hartford, Connecticut, this month is beginning a program that ministers to gays and lesbians, CNN affiliate WFSB-TVreports.

“These are people in the Roman Catholic Church who need our care and love,” Deacon Robert Pallotti, director of the Office of the Diaconate, told the Hartford TV station. “In some cases, they have been rejected by society. They need to be accepted, affirmed and supported as Roman Catholics trying to remain faithful to church teachings.”

The Vatican-endorsed program, called Courage, has more than 100 national chapters, WFSB reports. According to its website, Courage was started in 1980 by the late Terence Cardinal Cooke in Manhattan “to form a spiritual support system which would assist men and women with same-sex attractions in living chaste lives in fellowship, truth and love.”

Pallotti told WFSB, “Through support and spiritual intervention, we can help those with same-sex attractions live moral and fulfilling lives. These people are hurting and so are their families. Doing nothing would be a lack of compassion.”

The move has not been without controversy in the archdiocese after some questioned whether the program was condoning homosexual behavior, which is contrary to the Catholic Church’s teaching that sexual activity is reserved only for married heterosexual couples. [more, including video]





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