Assumption Church is in Barnesville, Minnesota, a town about 30 minutes southeast on I-94 from Fargo, North Dakota. Fr. Gary LaMoine is the pastor at Assumption who (apparently) has decided that supporting same-sex marriage is grounds for being denied the sacrament of confirmation."If you want to be a Catholic, you have to be 100 percent Catholic.Thats the lesson one family here learned after their 17-year-old son was denied confirmation after the priest at the Assumption Church here found a pro same-sex marriage post on the teens Facebook.The decision by the Rev. Gary LaMoine to deny the religious rite of passage for Lennon Cihak in mid-October shocked his mother, who said her son has gone to church every week and volunteered around the community in preparation for his confirmation this year.You kind of know the Catholic beliefs, but I never thought they would deny somebody confirmation because you werent 100 percent. I guess thats what shocks me, Shana Cihak said."
Well, that's one way to redouble the Church's support for the traditional legal definition of marriage.Although there's apparently a fine theological distinction at play here that escapes me. "Lennon said fellow students in his confirmation class liked the photo on Facebook, but they were still allowed to be confirmed. " Perhaps some of our more theologically informed readers could explain what the exact limit is for a faithful Catholic's opposition to a referendum question that the state bishops' conference supports. Is "liking" on Facebook okay, but posting isn't? Or is posting allowed, but not photographs? (And what does the Catechism have to say about this? Where do Catholics go to find out the rules?)For me the most amazing and inexplicably hopeful thing about the whole incident so far is that "...through it all, Lennon said his faith hasnt faltered. 'I dont want the church to be put down. I dont want the Catholic religion to be put down...."