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USCCB President Responds to President Obama's Statement

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President Barack Obama’s support for same-sex marriage — announced yesterday afternoon, a day before a political fundraiser in Hollywood — is “deeply saddening,” said New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. He said that in a Sept. 20, 2011, letter, he had told Obama that the U.S. bishops stood “ready to affirm every positive measure taken” by the president and his administration “to strengthen marriage and family life.”

“However, we cannot be silent in the face of words or actions that would undermine the institution of marriage, the very cornerstone of our society,” the cardinal said.

"President Obama's words today are not surprising since they follow upon various actions already taken by his administration that erode or ignore the unique meaning of marriage," said Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. bishops, in a May 9 statement.

"We cannot be silent in the face of words or actions that would undermine the institution of marriage, the very cornerstone of our society," Cardinal Dolan added. "The people of this country, especially our children, deserve better."

The Catholic Church upholds the sanctity of traditional marriage as being only between one man and one woman and also teaches that any sexual activity outside of marriage is sinful.

"I pray for the president every day and will continue to pray that he and his administration act justly to uphold and protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman," Cardinal Dolan said. "May we all work to promote and protect marriage and by so doing serve the true good of all persons."

On Tuesday in North Carolina, voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman by a 61-39 percent margin.

(CNS)