“North Carolina voters say ‘I do’ to the marriage amendment,” announced the Charlotte diocesan newspaper today. Yesterday’s vote resulted in a 3 to 2 margin of approval for the following language that will now be part of the state’s constitution:
Marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State.
Both Bishop Michael Burbidge of Raleigh and Bishop Peter Jugis of Charlotte issued brief statements applauding the outcome:
Bishop Burbidge: I express my sincere gratitude to the people of North Carolina who voted FOR Marriage in the referendum completed today. Passage of the Amendment to the Constitution of our State has now ensured that the definition of marriage, as the faithful and exclusive union of one man and one woman, and one which is open to the gift of children, is in accord with God’s design and in keeping with the very nature of this sacred vocation.
In moving forward, I ask that you join me in praying that whatever divisions may have occurred during this referendum process may be healed by the grace of God and a mutual renewed commitment by all people of good will, so that we may together build a society reflective of the unity that is ours as members of God’s family.
Bishop Jugis: I am pleased that the people of North Carolina voted for marriage. The Church consistently teaches that marriage is created by God as the faithful and exclusive union of one man and one woman, open to the gift of children.
In addition to catechesis on marriage throughout the months leading up to the vote, the bishops of North Carolina had asked that a letter supporting the marriage amendment be read at parishes throughout their dioceses last weekend. The letter read in part:
We are FOR the definition of marriage, because we believe it is a vocation in which God calls couples to faithfully and permanently embrace a fruitful union that is open to the gift of children, a gift that comes from the sexual expression between a man and a woman. The children born of this union have the right to the indispensable place of a father and mother in their lives. Children grow, are loved, nurtured and formed by those whose unique vocation is to be a father and a mother to their child.