‘Toolkit on Marriage’ equips Catholics for the public debate

To help Catholics better understand the church’s teaching on marriage and defend it in the public debate now taking place in Illinois and across the nation, the Catholic Conference of Illinois has assembled a “Toolkit on Marriage.”

The kit is available online at ilcatholic.org and will be distributed in early 2013 to parishes throughout the Diocese of Peoria.

It includes a question and answer section on 12 topics most often discussed in the debate, including “Why oppose redefining marriage in law for same-sex unions?”

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Catholics at the Capitol Day on March 4th in Springfield, Illinois

catholicconf

The current transition to newly elected representatives gives rise to the need to make our presence more widely known in the public square. Thus, you are invited to attend the first Catholics at the Capitol Day on March 4th in Springfield .

Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., the Illinois Bishops as well as the various representatives of the Catholic community are inviting you to join us in Springfield to meet with our lawmakers about topics important to the Catholic community and all people of good will. The purpose of the event is to promote our gospel values in the public square. It is clear that our voice is needed now more than ever, your active participation is vital to improving the integrity of our civic affairs.

Background fact sheets will be sent to you prior to the event as well as information about what to do once you arrive at the state capitol. For a nominal fee transportation is being provided from Chicago . Part of the day will include a rally with Catholic school children. There are seven legislative initiatives that are the focus of Catholics at the Capitol.

 legislation to increase the Education Expense Tax Credit, utilized by Catholic school parents, from $500 to $1000 annually;

 funding to community organizations and parishes to provide English classes to immigrants;

 legislation mandating that a woman seeking an abortion be offered the opportunity to view a sonogram before the procedure;

 opposition to legislation providing for same-sex marriage or similarly defined civil unions;

 legislation to ensure federal and state reimbursements are provided to Catholic health care and hospitals on a timely basis;

 legislation to finally abolish the death penalty;

 legislation or budgetary action to provide a cost of doing business increase for Catholic Charities and other social service providers;

Registration forms for this event can be found at catholicconferenceofillinois.org or you can call 312-368-1066 for further information. In order to receive background material prior to the event it is helpful to register and if possible, provide an e-mail address.