(CNSNews.com) Cardinal Francis George, head of the Catholic archdiocese of Chicago, said the levers of power in government, education, entertainment, and media are enforcing a “public creed,” a “fake church” that requires all citizens to approve of gay marriage and related sexual anomalies or be punished by the State, just “as Christians and Jews are fined for their religion in countries governed by Sharia law.”
Cardinal George, who was president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) in 2007-10, made his remarks in his Sept. 7 column for the archdiocesean newspaper. In his commentary, the cardinal explains that America, despite social frictions at certain times, had always strived to ensure religious freedom and respect for different religions.
The State, in the past, had “kept its promise to protect all religions and not become a rival to them, a fake church,” said the cardinal.
But that has now changed, he said. “In recent years, society has brought social and legislative approval to all types of sexual relationships that used to be considered sinful,’” he continued. “Since the biblical vision of what it means to be human tells us that not every friendship or love can be expressed in sexual relations, the church’s teaching on these issues is now evidence of intolerance for what the civil law upholds and even imposes.”
“What was once a request to live and let live has now become a demand for approval,” said Cardinal George, whose archdiocese includes about 2.2 million Catholics. “The ruling class,’ those who shape public opinion in politics, in education, in communications, in entertainment, is using the civil law to impose its own form of morality on everyone.”
“We are told that, even in marriage itself, there is no difference between men and women, although nature and our very bodies clearly evidence that men and women are not interchangeable at will in forming a family,” he said. “Nevertheless, those who do not conform to the official religion, we are warned, place their citizenship in danger.”
“Since all public institutions, no matter who owns or operates them, will be agents of the government and conform their activities to the demands of the official religion, the practice of medicine and law will become more difficult for faithful Catholics,” said Cardinal George. “It already means in some States that those who run businesses must conform their activities to the official religion or be fined, as Christians and Jews are fined for their religion in countries governed by Sharia law.”