Two years ago, in what the Boston Globe called "a stunning turn of events," the Catholic Charities of Boston announced that it would cease its adoption services, which had been its founding mission, rather than comply with a Massachusetts law prohibiting it from refusing to serve gay adoptive parents. The agency acted on the basis of a declaration by the Vatican in 2003 that described gay adoptions as "gravely immoral."
It what seems now like an equally stunning turn of events, but in the opposite direction, the largest Catholic adoption agency in Britain has decided to comply with a similar law and to place children with same-sex parents. The Church had originally threatened to close the adoption agencies, but apparently a split has developed, with a different Catholic agency in litigation seeking an exemption.
The largest Catholic adoption agency in England and Wales has decided to implement an adoption policy that does not rule out same-sex couples in the face of new laws that forbid such screening. The change in its adoption policy was made with the full support of the bishops who oversee the agency.
The decision, made by the Catholic Children’s Society of Arundel and Brighton, Portsmouth and Southwark (A&BSP) means the society will not turn away any homosexual couples who present themselves as potential adopters.
Terry Connor, chief executive of the society, explained to The Universe that any changes would not start until January and were a direct result of the recent Sexual Orientation Regulations which enforced “rights” for same sex couples who wish to adopt.
… In January 2007, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor wrote to the-then Prime Minister Tony Blair suggesting that Catholic adoption agencies in England and Wales would be forced to close down if they were not allowed to opt out of new gay rights laws, which he said contradicted Catholic teaching….
In the cardinal’s Westminster archdiocese, the Catholic Children’s Society has opted to mount a legal challenge to the regulations by amending its constitution. But A&BSP, which prepares between 40-50 potential adoptive parents a year, has instead decided to comply with them….