Catholic school violated gay man’s rights, judge rules

Print More
A Massachusetts judge has ruled that a Catholic School violated a gay man's rights by revoking a job offer.

A Massachusetts judge has ruled that a Catholic School violated a gay man's rights by revoking a job offer.

BOSTON (Reuters) – A Boston-area Roman Catholic girls’ high school violated a gay man’s rights when it revoked an offer for him to work as director of food services after he revealed on a form that he was married to another man, a state court has ruled.

Matthew Barrett last year sued Fontbonne Academy in Milton, Massachusetts, south of Boston, saying that it discriminated against him when they revoked a job offer made in 2013 after learning of his sexual orientation.

The school argued that as a Catholic institution, it had an obligation for all staff to model the values of the church, which teaches that homosexual activity is immoral.

Massachusetts Superior Court Justice Douglas Wilkins late Wednesday rejected that argument, noting that Barrett had been offered a job that did not involve teaching ethics but simply preparing food.

“He was not denied employment for any advocacy of same-sex marriage or gay rights; he only listed his husband as an emergency contact on a ‘new hire’ form,” Wilkins wrote.

He noted that Fontbonne also employs people who are not of the Catholic faith as well as those who are married outside the church.

“I’m ecstatic,” Barrett following the ruling. “What happened to me was wrong, and I truly hope it doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

An attorney for Fontbonne could not be reached for immediate comment.

Massachusetts in 2004 became the first U.S. state to legalize gay marriage. A June ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court made it legal nationwide.

  • Pingback: Catholic school violated gay man’s rights, Massachusett judge rules - mosaicversemosaicverse()

  • Pingback: Catholic school violated gay man’s rights, Massachusett judge rules | Christian News Agency()

  • Do us all a favor, be accurate and call “it” Roman Catholic” not just Catholic,
    as it is, at times confusing and it also implies that “it” is THE Universal church,
    which, of course it is not. Roman is specific and distinctive. IT does not
    speak for ALL Christian churches.

  • Mary Clark

    I am pretty sure most people don’t take the word “Catholic” literally, if they even know what the word actually means; common usage is as shorthand for Roman Catholic. Most Roman Catholics I know refer to themselves as “Catholic,” and we all know that if they were Protestants they’d NEVER say they were “Catholic.” Pedantry isn’t appropriate here; please don’t speak for “us all.”

  • Anthony Zarrella

    Noreen, “Roman Catholic” is simply not accurate. The title of the Church is simply “the Catholic Church” – “Roman” is a descriptor added as a pejorative term by Protestants and Anglicans during the British Protestant vs. Catholic disputes (to emphasize that Catholicism was “Roman” and therefore foreign, unlike the “Church of England”).

    The Catholic Church encompasses not only the Latin (“Roman”) Particular Church, but also 21 other sui juris Particular Churches (sometimes called “Rites”), including Byzantine, Armenian, Coptic, Maronite, and many others.

    Every Protestant denomination gets to be called by its own self-designated title – why should the Catholic Church not get that same privilege? We were using the name *LONG* before anyone else laid claim to it, after all.

  • Thibodeau

    You are flat out wrong in this. There is a fast rising effort to reclaim to reclaim the universality of catholic religious practice from the Roman branch of our church.

    As a regular reader I would much appreciate it if writers referred to the Roman Catholic church, as such, rather than distorting the truth of truth of the Nicene Creed for all the many who share it as a confessional statement of our faith.

  • Thibodeau

    All who share the Nicene creed as a confessional statement of faith are catholic. Truth is not dictated from Rome, merely policy for its members.

  • Larry

    Splitting hairs on an irrelevance here. Nobody outside of theology classes uses “catholic” in lower case very much. In the vernacular Roman Catholic and Catholic (upper case important here) is synonymous.