Redefining marriage ‘an arrogant act of cultural vandalism’: New Zealand family leader

by Michelle Kaufman, New Zealand Correspondent
Reposted from LifeSiteNews.com

AUCKLAND, NZ, August 19, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – More than 30 same-sex couples have “married” over the last 24 hours, as New Zealand’s Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Act has come into effect.

Despite little debate, and strong opposition, politicians chose to pass the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill 77 to 44 in April. Marriage now lawfully means “the union of two people, regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

Louisa Wall, the Labour MP who presented the bill that redefined marriage, was present at a lesbian couple’s wedding at the Auckland Unitarian Church in Ponsonby. She said it was an “amazing day to be here to celebrate” the couple’s “commitment they have to one another and the institution of marriage.”

But others say the new law defies the national mood and common sense.

“Despite their grandiose view, the politicians never had the authority to redefine marriage,” said Bob McCoskrie, the national director of Family First NZ. “They committed an arrogant act of cultural vandalism with no clear public mandate.”

Many people have commented on the bias in reporting on the day’s events. The mainstream media featured laudatory coverage of the weddings themselves, giving little attention to opponents’ views.

Australian couple Trent Kandler and Paul McCarthy were flown from Australia to Wellington by Tourism New Zealand, where a “wedding” was held at the national museum, Te Papa. The company hopes to stimulate wedding tourism from same-sex couples around the world.

Several organizations took advantage of the moment by offering free prizes to homosexual partners.

Air NZ provided an in-flight “wedding” ceremony for a lesbian couple, Lynley Bendall and Ally Wanikau, where Jesse Tyler Fergusson from the TV series Modern Family was present. The package included a honeymoon at a Palms Spring Resort in the U.S.

Lance Huxford is calling for people to complain to the media, saying he is “shocked at the unbalanced coverage of the same sex marriage law coming into effect on both TV 1 and TV 3.”

Pro-marriage groups and most churches continue to promote marriage as being between one man and one woman despite an ever-increasing attitude that marriage is simply about happiness and love.

“We must continue to speak up for marriage as uniting a man and a woman with each other and any children born from that union” Dame Colleen Bayer, national director of Family Life International NZ, said. “For the sake of our children, we cannot stand by and let marriage be mocked.”

For more information on how to make a complaint and the grounds under which a complaint can be made visit Broadcasting Standards Authority, visit http://www.bsa.govt.nz

Complaints may be addressed to the Chief Executive of the broadcaster:

TVNZ
P O Box 3819
AUCKLAND
Phone: (09) 916 7000
Fax: (09) 916 6864
http://www.tvnz.co.nz

TV3
Private Bag 92 624
AUCKLAND
Phone: (09) 377 9730
Fax: (09) 366 5999
http://www.tv3.co.nz

Advertisements

The debate that wasn’t: New Zealand’s rushed marriage revolution

The following blog post by Carolyn Moynihan raised concerns over the lack of debate held over the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill and its subsequent passing into law last Wednesday 17th April.  Thank you Carolyn for writing so eloquently the thoughts of many who have had concerns over the lack of debate and the sheer determination to stamp over anyone who believes that marriage should only be for one man and one woman.   This article was published in  Conjuguality.

The debate that wasn’t: New Zealand’s rushed marriage revolution
Last night (April 17) 77 people changed the institution of marriage in New Zealand from a conjugal union with the potential for generating children and providing them with the nurture of their own mother and father into “a union of 2 people regardless of their sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity” with the potential for systematically depriving children of their mother or father, or both. All in the name of “love”. Starting in August.

Actually, just 17 people managed to do that, because the New Zealand Parliament currently has 121 members and if 17 of the 77 who finally voted for the “definition of marriage” bill had voted against it and with the 44 who opposed the move, this South Sea revolution could have been put down and time taken to properly discuss the whole idea. The notion put about by MPs and journalists that there has been a “fierce debate” on same-sex marriage over the past seven or eight months is sheer fantasy.

The truth is that those in favour of law change didn’t want a public debate. They didn’t broach the subject in the last election campaign (nor the one before) but sprang it on us through a private member’s bill — fortuitously drawn from the ballot soon after it was introduced by lesbian MP Louisa Wall. Calls for a referendum — taken up by New Zealand First, a minor party in the government, and by a few other MPs — were rejected by the majority in the House on grounds that include: it would be difficult for people to exercise an informed vote (of course, if you won’t give them time to be informed) and “minority rights issues” should not be the subject of a referendum (even though no-one has shown us how people incapable of marriage can have a right to it).

What many politicians appear to want most of all is to show that “we are modern/tolerant/compassionate too”. This applies to the several MPs whose first — and last — word on the subject was “It won’t affect my marriage” or some similar statement. Prime Minister John Key led the way here and other National (“conservative”) members followed suit. Key himself took his cue from Barack Obama, declaring his support for gay marriage the day after Obama announced his, and also from British Prime Minister David Cameron who nailed his rainbow colours to the mast some time ago, causing a mutiny in his Conservative Party’s ranks.

Read more at Conjuguality

Catholic Bishops consider passing of Same Sex Marriage Bill bizarre

New Zealand Catholic Bishops who consistently opposed the Marriage Definition Bill throughout the Parliamentary process have expressed their deep sadness that, despite the fact that such a large percentage of the public are opposed to this, it has become law.

“We find it bizarre that what has been discarded is an understanding of marriage that has its origin in human nature and common to every culture, and that almost all references to husband and wife will be removed from legislation referencing marriage. We know many New Zealanders stand with us in this,” said Archbishop John Dew, President of the NZ Catholic Bishops Conference.

“Marriage is the essential human institution that predates religion and state. It is a committed union between a man and a woman which has a natural orientation towards the procreation of new human life,” Archbishop Dew said.

“Marriage is founded on sexual difference and the traditional definition of marriage reflects this unique reality,”

“This uniqueness requires a name and definition which distinguishes marriage from any other form of relationship,” he said.

“We’ve been assured that our religious freedom to teach and practice marriage according to our religious beliefs is protected and we will continue to ensure that this freedom is upheld.” Archbishop John Dew said.

Reposted from The Catholic Church in Aotearoa New Zealand

Disappointment at passing of same-sex marriage bill

Family Life International NZ is disappointed that most politicians chose to vote for the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill last night, despite there being a reasonable amount of opposition to it.

True marriage, we believe, can only be between one man and one woman. Marriage offers stability to society and provides for the future prosperity of our nation. Many New Zealander’s believe this to be true and their concerns have been largely ignored by the majority of Ministers.

Supporters of same-sex ‘marriage’ tell those of us who oppose the legislation that it will not affect us, that it is about love, equality and human rights. But this legislation does affect those who are not in support of same-sex marriage. We are not allowed to speak our minds. We are called ‘haters’, ‘bigots’. What will come next?

Family Life International NZ is concerned that even with the limited clause which intends to protect religious organisations who, by faith must refuse to officiate at same-sex weddings, it does not go far enough. The clause does not protect independent celebrants or those who are at odds with their own Church’s position on same-sex marriage, and it does not protect ordinary service providers. Will we see situations arise such as in Canada where business owners are persecuted because of their refusal to offer services to same-sex couples?

Finally and most importantly, the welfare of children is at the forefront of our minds. Railroading the Marriage Amendment Bill through parliament has meant that discussion around the rights of the child have not been discussed properly. Evidence is clear that children thrive best when they are brought up in a home with a loving mother and father who are committed in a marriage relationship. Why would we legislate for anything less for our children?

The nature of civil marriage has now changed in New Zealand. Introducing same-sex marriage does change the meaning of marriage. It changes people’s perception of what marriage is. In the end, parliament’s decision will lead us to the absolute destruction of marriage and family.

New Zealand becomes 13th country to legalize gay ‘marriage’

New Zealand has become the 13th country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage. The Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill was passed in Parliament Wednesday night 77 votes to 44.

Reaction from the supporters of the legislation has been jubilant. Louisa Wall, who submitted the Private Member’s Bill, said, “This third reading is our road towards healing and including all citizens in our state institution of marriage regardless of their sex, sexual orientation or gender identity.”

However, while supporters of the legislation are celebrating, many New Zealanders are concerned at how fast it has moved through the parliamentary process, and the effects it will have on the country.

“In passing the ‘shot-gun’ same-sex marriage bill, Parliament has chosen to reject the obvious cultural and natural character of marriage and the subsequent creation and care of children, and made marriage just about partnership,” said Bob McCroskie, National Director of Family First.

“In ramming through this bill in a shameful way without due consideration, and with no clear public mandate, politicians have committed an arrogant act of cultural vandalism.”

The bill, which had its first reading in August 2012, only a month after it was introduced, redefines marriage to include same-sex and transgender couples. The law also allows same-sex couples to adopt children, a consequence of the legislation that has not been widely understood within New Zealand.

There are concerns that the rights of children have been overlooked. “With the accompanying consequence of changes to adoption laws, politicians have also weakened the rights of the child in favour of pandering to the demands of adults,” said McCroskie. “A child has a right to a mum and a dad. We should not set out in public policy to deny a child that basic right. This is not a sexuality issue. This is a gender issue. The gender of the parents does matter to a child.”

It has been stated throughout the debate that legalizing same-sex marriage will not affect others, however Dame Colleen Bayer, National Director of Family Life International NZ, argued that same-sex marriage does affect those who oppose it. “Supporters of same-sex ‘marriage’ tell those of us who oppose the legislation that it will not affect us, that it is about love, equality and human rights. But this legislation does affect those who are not in support of same-sex marriage. We are not allowed to speak our minds. We are called ‘haters’, ‘bigots’. What will come next?”

Archbishop John Dew, President of the NZ Catholic Bishops Conference, reportedly reacted to the passage of the legislation, saying: “We find it bizarre that what has been discarded is an understanding of marriage that has its origin in human nature and common to every culture, and that almost all references to husband and wife will be removed from legislation referencing marriage. We know many New Zealanders stand with us in this.”

Civil Unions have been legal in New Zealand since April 2005.

The changes to the Marriage Act will take effect in August 2013.

Reposted from LifeSiteNews.com

Same-sex “marriage” bill not passed yet

Supporters of same-sex “marriage” are showing their arrogance today as they begin to celebrate the win they expect tonight when the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill is read for the third and final time in Parliament.

I can’t help but think of the story of the tortoise and the hare.  The hare, so sure that he would win the race, got distracted and had a rest.  Meanwhile, the tortoise steadily kept on going, faithful to the very end.  It was not the cocky hare who won the race, but the tortoise, slow, steady and faithful.

The Bill may very well go through.  If it does, it is because the politicians have been swayed by the gay lobby’s cry of “love” and “equality”.  They will not have listened to the very valid arguments against the legalisation of same-sex “marriage”.

If, the Bill is not passed, it will be because Truth has prevailed, having been heard above the noise of the same-sex supporters.

No one should be so arrogant as to think that this is in the bag.  This is the eleventh hour.  Anything can happen yet.

Same-sex “marriage” and the threat to religious freedom

John-Henry Westen and Rachael Wong outside St Patrick's Cathedral Auckland 14 April 2013The Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill is due to be read in Parliament for the third and final time tomorrow evening.  If this Bill is passed in the House tomorrow night, it will be legal for same-sex couples to marry and adopt children in New Zealand.  No one will have the right to refuse wedding services (such as venues, flowers, catering) based on their views that marriage can not ever be between two people of the same sex.

Out of concern, Family Life International NZ held two talks given by John-Henry Westen (Editor-in-Chief of LifeSiteNews.com) on the topic – one in Wellington last Thursday night, and the other this past Sunday.  Thousands of people have been blessed with the wisdom of John-Henry over the last two weeks, in particular youth.  Canada is John-Henry’s home, and same-sex marriage has been legal there since 2005.  Enough time has elapsed to see just what the ramifications of legalising same-sex marriage has been for Canadian’s.  New Zealand should heed the warnings.

John-Henry Westen spoke about the following cases where legalising same-sex marriage and normalising homosexual behaviour has led to ordinary citizens finding themselves in trouble with the law.

  • A couple who ran a bed and breakfast refused to let a room to a homosexual couple and kindly asked them to find another bed and breakfast.  As a result the Christian couple were sued and their business was shut down.
  • A printer in a district where there were numerous printing businesses was approached by a customer wishing to have homosexual activist material printed.  The printer, explaining that he disagreed with the material, asked respectfully for the customer to choose another printing company.  Because he refused the printing job, the man was sued and lost his home trying to defend himself.
  • A teacher in Alberta wrote a letter to the editor in support of traditional marriage (note it had nothing to do with what he said in the classroom), and was fired by the school because of his views.
  • A well-known Canadian sportscaster from Toronto was fired after he sent a tweet supporting traditional marriage. He lodged a complaint with the Canadian Human Rights Commission, however, it has just been reported that it was dismissed.
  • When same-sex marriage was introduced, marriage commissioners were fired if they were not in support of the legislation.
  • The Knights of Columbus were sued when they refused to hire out a hall in their ownership to a lesbian couple who were wishing to celebrate their union.
  • A Bishop in Calgary was sued $100,000.00 when he wrote the Catholic Church’s teaching on homosexuality in the newspaper.
  • In Ontario, a parish priest allowed a same-sex couple to serve at Mass.  There were 15 parishioners who felt that this was not on, given the Church’s teaching about chastity, marriage and homosexuality.  The parishioners wrote to the Bishop expressing their concern.  The Bishop then wrote to the parish priest explaining that it was unacceptable, only to be sued by one of the homosexual men who were serving for $25,000.00.  Each of the parishioners were also sued for $20,000.00.  Thankfully, it was all settled and the charges were dropped.

Each of these concrete examples of persecution because of religious beliefs are shocking.  It is truely concerning when we realise that this is just the beginning.   John-Henry explained the thinking of the gay lobby that is so desperate to transform what is ‘normal’ saying

“The very first and most important point is to stamp out this opposition.  Remember when I said it was likely conscience driven?  Guess what?  Once you pass same sex marriage your conscience is still there.   But then, the thinking goes ‘but that’s because these kind of people exist in society, we’ve got to stamp out this type of racism…’ “Well these catholics these christians they keep raising up this kind of prejudice in their children so we’ve got to get to the children.’ They do it through schools”

The evidence is so shocking of the indoctrination of school children that it will leave your blood running cold.

  • One province has a curriculum which is to be taught in all public schools, all Catholic schools, all private schools and most schockingly, by all home schooling families. The programme teaches relativism of all religious groups and equality of all types of families.  One family, sure that they could not be told what to teach in their home, took a case to the Supreme Court and lost on a technicality.
  • Catholic schools in Ontario have been forced to teach about anti-gay bulling, but are not allowed to educate the children about Catholic teaching on homosexuality.
  • The Education Minister of Yucon has just recently said that Catholic schools are not allowed to teach against homosexuality because it is against the Charter of Rights and Freedoms which is a Charter for all of Canada.

However, John-Henry reminded us that the troubles are worst for those inclined to homosexuality.  He explained that our greatest call and duty as Christians is to love our neighbour citing he Matthew 25:35-40 .

“My brothers and sisters, you have to know that you are called to love… Our brothers and sisters who are inclined to homosexuality are now facing a massive threat with the government stamping approval on this behaviour which they need to know is deadly and we are called to suffer.  And we are called to tell them that it is dangerous for them.  And what about the question ‘when I was inclined to grave sin that would cause my body harm and my soul’s eternal home you didn’t tell me?’  We must love enough to stop same-sex marriage.  We must love enough to tell our brothers and sisters inclined to homosexuality and every other sexual sin that it harms your body and it harms your soul.”

The talk on Sunday, which also included a Prayer Vigil and Procession to St Patrick’s Cathedral in Auckland was concluded by a short synopsis of the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill by an Auckland lawyer, Rachael Wong, Rachael explained that the clause inserted to protect religious ministers in the Bill is very narrow, and questionable.  She is also concerned about children and the changes the Marriage (Definition of Marriage) Amendment Bill will make to adoption legislation.  She explains that

“a consequential effect of the bill will be to allow same-sex couples to adopt children by giving them status of spouses… This consequential change to our adoption laws clearly impacts children.  And parliament’s failure to consider the best interests of children throughout the entire legislative process is in contravention of its obligations under the UN Convention of Rights of the Child.”

If New Zealand’s politicians truely have the best interests of all our citizens at heart, they will choose to put this Bill to rest tomorrow and keep marriage as a union legally recognised by the State as only being between one man and one woman.