Friday, August 28, 2009

Thomas More Society of Chicago Files Brief for New York State Catholic Conference in Defense of Traditional Marriage

CHICAGO, Aug. 28 /Christian Newswire/ -- This week the New York Court of Appeals, the state's highest court, ordered that the Chicago-based Thomas More Society could file an amicus curiae brief on behalf of the New York State Catholic Conference to defend traditional marriage in the case of Kenneth Lewis v. New York State Department of Civil Service. The central issue is whether New York state should recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages that have been lawfully entered into in another state. The brief argues that recognition of same-sex marriages, which would undermine a natural and social institution, is not required by New York precedents governing recognition of out-of-state marriages.

"A lower court said that New York state can recognize an out-of-state same-sex marriage, which does not make sense. A marriage that violates the public policy of New York state should not be recognized, regardless of where it was entered into, period," said Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel for the Thomas More Society in Chicago. "This lower court decision was nothing less than an aberrant departure from the governing law. New York's Court of Appeals has already handed down a definitive ruling in 2006 that the state's public policy, as set forth in its Domestic Relations Law, clearly provides that the state prohibits marriage between members of the same sex. Furthermore, under New York state law, the state is not required to recognize out-of-state marriages that could not be legally performed in New York state."

"The Catholic bishops of New York state have consistently supported efforts to defend the institution of marriage from those who would redefine it as something other than what it has always been -- the enduring union of one man and one woman, ordered for the procreation of children and the mutual support of the husband and wife," said Richard E. Barnes, executive director of the NYS Catholic Conference. "The New York State Court of Appeals has previously ruled that state law defines marriage in this way, and that the state has a legitimate interest in prohibiting so-called 'same-sex marriage.'"


About the Thomas More Society
The Thomas More Society is a public interest law firm that counsels and defends those who work to protect innocent human life, defends those who proclaim faith-based values in our nation's public square, and strives to protect the institution of marriage as a union of man and woman formed to beget, bear and nurture new human lives. For more information, please visit: