Lesbian Teacher Suing Diocese for Being Catholic

The Columbus Dispatch reports that a Catholic High School fired a physical education teacher last month after it became public knowledge that she is a lesbian who lives with her partner, in direct violation of Church teachings. Sadly, the teacher, Carla Hale, reacted by suing the Diocese of Columbus under the city’s anti-discrimination law, which does not provide an exemption for religious organizations and carries a penalty of up to 180 days in jail. There is a very real possibility then that Bishop Campbell could be sent to jail for upholding the Catholic faith.

There is also the possibility that this case could end up in the Supreme Court, as the unanimous decision in the Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC case specifically leaves open the possibility of subsequent litigation for breach of contract. However, one has to wonder whether a contract based on a 19-year lie could still be valid. The Dispatch article does not state whether the school knew Hale was a lesbian and perhaps had some informal agreement with her provided she kept it quiet, but if so, the concealment on Hale’s part would only be more damning. Neither the school nor the diocese should be punished for trying to right the situation.

Bishop Campbell (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)

Bishop Campbell’s diocese is being sued for upholding Catholic teaching. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)

An analogous scenario would be a bank manager discovering that one of her employees has been robbing banks, or a police chief discovering that one of his officers has been dealing drugs on the side for the past 20 years. Carla Hale clearly opposes Catholic teaching, so how can she possibly be a Catholic teacher? The Catholic Church is often accused of hypocrisy, but what could be more hypocritical than allowing a teacher to publicly contradict the Catholic faith?

Catholic schools entrust their teachers with a special responsibility to provide spiritual formation and act as role models for their impressionable charges. Not so long ago, most if not all teachers at Catholic schools were consecrated religious. Carla Hale is not even Catholic, but is a practicing Methodist. There is nothing wrong with ecumenism, but faithful Catholic parents have every right to expect that teachers at a Catholic school should be faithful ministers of the Gospel and witnesses to Christ in both their public and private lives.

Nevertheless, Hale has found a deep well of vocal support from partisans on the left. At time of writing, an online petition for her reinstatement had over 10,000 signatures. In times of persecution, there is always an angry mob that thinks it is in the right. Popular opinion claims to be loudly and fiercely opposed to any form of intolerance as a matter of principle, but this apparently does not include intolerance of faithful Catholics.

The more we are persecuted, the more we must pray that Bishop Campbell, and indeed all of us will have the strength to bear the cross. As the motto of the Carthusian order reminds us, “Stat crux dum volvitur orbis.” The Cross is steady while the world is turning. We must hold fast to the cross, because the world around us is not going to stop. We must remember as the cross grows heavier, it is because we still believe we are standing on solid ground, when in truth, the cross is all that is solid and eternal.

  • Robert Moone

    This is a travesty.

    The analogies posted above are on target and Ohio is an employment at will state. To “protect” a person who has secured a job by perpetuating a lie is immoral at best.

    This is but another example of what is happenting to our city as a result of one-party rule.

  • Ginger West

    Jesus was crucified because He was God. He taught us, throughout Scripture, that we will be persecuted in His name – and prepared us for it. Just this past week, in the Acts of the Apostles, we read about the stoning of St. Stephen. We MUST be willing to suffer persecution in the name of all that is good and true. JESUS IS LORD and will not abandon us nor leave us orphans.

  • http://facebook carol friend

    Good for Bishop Campbell, young children need the support of the catholic church to keep the schools and the teachers in tune with our catholic faith.

  • John

    Is this satire?

  • Alexandra

    I’m from Peru, so sorry for the bad english. I do not agree with your point of view. I am a practicing catholic, I try to folow the 10 rules in my daily life, I go to mass every sunday and I activly participate in the pastoral department of my catholic university. There must be a lot of thing of our faith that I don’t now, becuase I’m young and just starting my formation process, but I’ve never understood why we are supposed to hate the gay people, I haven’t seen it written in the Bible (may it is written) but still! Why?! If they are good people with good intentions, why we should hate them?! Who cares if they love someone of their own sex? Does it make them bad persons? no, they are priest who are bad persons and they are gays that are good persons, so it doesn’t matter your profession, your origin, your sexual option, it doesn’t determinates who you are. That’t what catholics should judge, wheter the persons are good or not, if they have good intentions or not, the rest doesn’t matter! I can’t imagine Good hating gays just for that, he is love, he call us to give love and still we profess hate. That can not be right. Tell me why we can not love a good gay person.

    • Slats

      Alexandra, the Church and the Bible don’t say anything about “hating gay people.” For one thing, Jesus told us to love our neighbor. For another, devout Catholics do not accept the term “gay,” which indicates not only same-gendered attractions, but also a political agenda to force the acceptance of same-gendered genital acts as normal. Furthermore, the Catholic Church clearly teaches in its catechism that we are to love people with same-gendered attractions. However, that same catechism explains that the Church has always and everywhere condemned genital acts between two people of the same gender, regardless of attractions, as gravely evil. They are always acts outside of marriage, and they are furthermore very obviously unnatural. It’s the action, not the attraction. Of course, those involved with the gay agenda will say, “You cannot separate me from what I do, especially not this particular thing.” For Catholic Christians, that’s absurd. We believe that Jesus gave His life to separate us from our sins, and devout Catholics will die a martyr’s death rather than accept same-gendered genital acts as not being grave matter, so we’re never going to agree with the gay agenda on that point. We can and do separate what people do from who they are. It is in fact possible (with God’s grace!) to love the sinner and hate the sin, and that is what a follower of Jesus rightly does.

  • Mary

    The issue is hypocritical. The Columbus diocese has teachers who are divorced. The school itself allows openly gay students to bring same sex partners to their school prom. The diocese has principals and other teachers who are gay and teachers who are co-habitating with members of the opposite sex. Do they survey to see who is on birth control?. Your bank and police analogy fails because Ms. Hale has not committed a crime like a bank robber or drug dealer. She is not a religion teacher so the nexus to her job and her lifestyle is de minimus. I happen to be a supporter from the right, not the left. I dont support same sex marriage. However, I abhor the hypocrisy of this decision and the failure to show how Ms. Hales off duty lifestyle has had a negative impact on her position. In 19 years, there has Vernon complaint. Will you investigate and fire co-workers who had knowledge of this and failed to report it? Their silence enabled the “illegal contract” to continue. And now you are going to point out that she isn’t Catholic like its a sin. The Diocese hired her and she wasn’t Catholic. I believe that the Columbus Diocese has its head in the sand about what occurs at Catholic Schools. Being a parent of a Student in one of their schools, we are opting out at the end of this year as are over a dozen other families in our school. Last year the attendance declined approximately 20%; this year it is sure to match that. . The intolerance, classism, bullying, and nonCatholic values that my children are taught has been a huge disappointment. I pray for Bishop Campbell. And I pray that he has the ability to make the right decisions in this matter. I am not a persecutor or an angry mob and resent the inference.



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