Maryland Senate Votes to Redefine Marriage

Statement from the Archdiocese of Washington

February 23, 2012

The Maryland Senate altered the state’s longstanding definition of marriage as the union between one man and one woman in a vote today. Throughout the expedited hearings Maryland House and Senate members held in consideration of the same-sex marriage bill, Catholics and individuals across Maryland encouraged the lawmakers to protect the longstanding and proper definition of marriage as a union of one man and one woman. Regrettably, this did not happen as the House passed legislation last week, and the Senate followed this evening.

The Archdiocese of Washington opposes the redefinition of marriage based on the clear understanding that the complementarity of man and woman is intrinsic to the meaning of marriage. The word marriage describes the exclusive and lifelong union of one man and one woman with the possibility of generating and nurturing children. Other unions exist, but they are not marriage.

The Archdiocese of Washington will continue to strongly advocate for the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Furthermore, the archdiocese supports efforts undertaken by those who uphold the traditional meaning of marriage to bring this issue to the people of Maryland for a vote.

The Archdiocese of Washington is home to over 600,000 Catholics, 140 parishes and 98 Catholic schools, located in Washington, DC and five Maryland counties: Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s.

Chieko Noguchi
Office of Communications
[email protected]