Media Overlook Views of Catholic Membership

September 9, 2008
In this week’s Religion, Faith & Values news summary , there is news of yet another group of Catholic bishops urging voters to ban marriage for same-sex couples. Two Arizona Catholic bishops released a letter calling on its membership to oppose marriage equality and support a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot in Arizona. However, when media report on the views of these church leaders, they continue to overlook the attitudes of Catholic adherents regarding marriage equality (including Pope Benedict’s April statement). In May, Pew Research found that 45 percent of Catholics favor marriage equality, compared to the 40 percent of Catholics who oppose it. It is critical to note that a plurality of Catholics support marriage for gay and lesbian couples, despite the anti-gay campaign started by the church's leadership. When stories about Catholic attitudes toward marriage for gay and lesbian couples appear in media, such facts should always be included in order for them to be more fair and accurate.