Bishop Thomas Tobin
Bishop Says Marriage Equality Is 'Immoral and Unnecessary'

By Michelle Garcia

Originally published on Advocate.com January 08 2013 3:17 PM ET

Providence, R.I.'s Catholic bishop, Thomas Tobin, says that establishing marriage equality in his state would be “immoral and unnecessary.”

Tobin wrote in a column appearing in this week's Rhode Island Catholic urging General Assembly members to drop legislation that would allow same-sex couples to wed.

“The Catholic Church has consistently promoted respect and pastoral care for individuals with same-sex attraction,” Tobin wrote. “They are children of God and our brothers and sisters. They are invited to be members of our churches. It is our very concern for their spiritual welfare, however, that motivates our rejection of the homosexual lifestyle and same-sex marriage.”

Tobin added that the General Assembly should not approve marriage equality because it could pose a threat to religious freedom and because the U.S. Supreme Court will soon hear two cases regarding same-sex marriage recognition.

“Why is Rhode Island spending time and energy on this issue right now when the Supreme Court might make the decision for us?” he asked. “Let's wait and see what the Supreme Court determines before we engage in this emotionally charged and divisive battle once again.”