June 15, 2020
WASHINGTON — The president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles, provided a statement on the decision issued today by the Supreme Court of the United States – combining Bostock v. Clayton County, Ga., Altitude Express v. Zarda, and R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes v. Equal Opportunity Employment Comm’n. The justices ruled that the prohibition on “sex” discrimination in employment in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 now prohibits discrimination based on “sexual orientation” and “transgender” status.
Archbishop Gomez’s statement follows:
I am deeply concerned that the U.S. Supreme Court has effectively redefined the legal meaning of ‘sex’ in our nation’s civil rights law. This is an injustice that will have implications in many areas of life.
By erasing the beautiful differences and complementary relationship between man and woman, we ignore the glory of God’s creation and harm the human family, the first building block of society. Our sex, whether we are male or female, is part of God’s plan for creation and for our lives. As Pope Francis has taught with such sensitivity, to live in the truth with God’s intended gifts in our lives requires that we receive our bodily and sexual identity with gratitude from our Creator. No one can find true happiness by pursuing a path that is contrary to God’s plan.
Every human person is made in the image and likeness of God and, without exception, must be treated with dignity, compassion, and respect. Protecting our neighbors from unjust discrimination does not require redefining human nature.
We pray that the Church, with the help of Mary, the Mother of God, will be able to continue her mission to bring Jesus Christ to every man and woman.
On August 23, 2019, the USCCB, joined by other national religious organizations, filed amicus curiae briefs in the cases. They are available at http://www.usccb.org/about/general-counsel/amicus-briefs/upload/Bostock-8-23-19.pdf and http://www.usccb.org/about/general-counsel/amicus-briefs/upload/Harris-8-23-19.pdf.
Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Archbishop José H. Gomez, religious freedom, religious liberty, Title VII, nondiscrimination, Supreme Court.