Lawyer facilitating child placement in same-sex household

To what extent can an American lawyer assist in placing a child-in-need (e.g., abused) in a household where open homosexuality is accepted without violating moral norms? What if the behavior is private (the adult hires a babysitter and lives out his affair without telling the child)? Does age/sex of child matter? Does it matter if lawyer is not a policymaker? if he makes known his objections first? if the matter would be conducted without his participation? Does it matter if the alternative placement would also be problematic (private homosexual vs. “openly” fornicating with boyfriend/girlfriend)?

Obvious #1: if the lawyer can obtain alternative assignments, (s)he should do so.
Obvious #2: degree of assistance matters. Remote cooperation of holding a door for someone to enter a placement meeting for a same-sex household wouldn’t be problematic. Leading the placement meeting is a lot more morally iffy. In a similar (but not exact) situation, I understand that Catholic Charities in Illinois got out of the adoption business over these type issues.

If I, as a lawyer, were assigned such a case, and couldn’t get out of it, I should resign, right?

Please do not say: consult your priest. I will do that regardless, and obey him should he give direct advice. I merely invite you to play armchair theologian so that I might make as informed a decision as possible given every nuance or should the priest decline to stick his neck out with direct advice. Who knows? - a comment here may help formulate the best questions to the priest. Thanks!

In states that were trying to force Catholic Charities to conduct same-sex adoption placements, Catholic Charities was instructed by the bishops to stop doing adoptions rather than place in same sex households.

I think that tells you all you need to know about whether your should participate in something like that in any way.

Why would you want to work for people who would try to coerce you into doing something to hurt innocent children? Flee such evil.

Slavery was constitutionally outlawed after the Civil war; so the scenario of an attorney being “assigned such a case, and couldn’t get out” is an oxymoron. If he could resign, then he could get out. And he most certainly is not required to take the case to begin with, whether it is an assigned one, or one that comes through the door with or without a retainer.

I know a woman married to another woman. She has five adopted children and I know for a fact that she and her partner are wonderful, engaged and loving mothers.

What I know to be the exact opposite of what you deem evil.


No, it doesn’t, unfortunately - it is not fully analogous. They have the added burden of great risk of scandal. No one knows what my work entails (it would be mostly privileged anyways), so there is very little risk of scandal. Catholic Charities may have based their decision entirely on that factor. If I were to blindly copy their actions, I run the risk of doing harm, such as not being able to feed my family after an imprudent resignation when Catholic morality, correctly applied, may have allowed me to keep my job.

Therefore, I need a more cogent argument if you can spare one, preferably along the lines of my original question “to what extent”? Can I assist if I don’t lead, as in some nurses who licitly (in the well-settled moral sense) do general cleanup after an abortion at a general hospital? Or is that crossing the line? … The moral truth is somewhere in the grey forest here, not the black and white one.

If you’re seeing your priest, you’ve got it covered on this topic.

But make sure you ask if you may be scrupulous.

Please do not say: consult your priest. I will do that regardless, and obey him should he give direct advice.

FYI to CAF users:

This sometimes comes under scrutiny, but’s not because we are just taking the easy way out.

We cannot discern someone’s conscience over the internet and probably few people on here are qualified to be spiritual directors. I do believe that persons who claim such credentials must prove to site staff they are indeed qualified.

Also, we cannot countermand what a Confessor or spiritual director says with regards to gray area issues.

Frankly the only thing that should matter is the child being safe and loved. Outside of that people need to stop being so paranoid. I would rather see children placed with single people, as well as “same sex” couples, then have them stored in orphanages or foster care where they are abused and neglected.

And no, homosexuality is not a precursor to being a pedophile. If the couple in question can care for the child and will not abuse them, stop fussing about it. I have know more heterosexual creeps than homosexual ones. And by this I mean heterosexuals who have later been found to be molesting and abusing their own kids.

Catholic adoption agencies could never place adoptive children with same sex couples. When he was Cardinal in Argentina, our current pope called such placement a form of child abuse and discrimination against children. Catholic adoption agencies did not close down because of great risk of scandal. They closed down rather than place children with same sex couples because it would be a gravely wrong to do such placements.

You are aware of Pope Francis’s views on the subject correct? That homosexual adoption is a form of child abuse?

Yes! And many gay gentlemen want children, but they have to go through lawyers and adopt. These lawyers who find potential good fathers among them SHOULD help them.

If these lawyers are Catholic they cannot participate in an act the church deems abusive to children. All children deserve a mother and father,and sad to say in our lax and corrupt culture all too many children are suffering because of the sins of the parents.

Not too long ago I was conversing with a homosexual man at a local playground. He was a nice person and his two little girls appeared to be well taken care of. Interestingly his older child(they were 1 yr and 3) kept following me around holding my hand and trying to imitate me.I sadly realized that she had no mother and was desperately looking for that female role model sorely lacking in her life. Kids do need a mother and father and God created us male and female so that we may become one flesh and in that loving union produce offspring.

You’re making pretty big assumptions about that little girl.

I have a daughter, who has a mother and she has taken a shine to other moms at the park.

Does that mean her mother is inadequate?

Perhaps it’s just a child exploring the world and people that surround her. :thumbsup:

I’ve wondered about that. I was once in a similar situation when I was visiting Gettysburg, and looking at the statue of General Meade on his horse. A little girl who was with two men, and she must have been about four years old, just thought I was BEAUTIFUL. I was wondering where her momma was.

I had a friend who decided to have a child out of wedlock. Via sperm bank. She had a little boy. For a while, she and her twin brother were raising the boy, but then her twin brother died. He was five. I dunno. This life is so tough and God help us all, because I really don’t know.:frowning:

It could be that. Kids are so curious. If I were a lawyer, I would hope two men would adopt a boy, or two women, a girl. But it doesn’t always work that way. sigh

I’m curious – do any of the posters here actually know any gay couples? Any gay couples, who have adopted?

I find this kind of questioning condescending. No one need personally know a Gay couple with a child to examine the morality of the thing.

The answer for me, though it is not one that should really matter to the argument is:

I, though not gay, was extremely active in the Gay lifestyle for many years. I hung out with, partied with and went to gay clubs with very very close personal gay friends and family. My neighbors are two lesbians with adopted children who are both teachers in town. They are what society would term “good” parents.

My cousin, a gay man, has attempted adoption in the past. I was instrumental in denying the adoption. For reasons I will not go into here.

Hi Polar Guy.

I’ve known 3 gay couples, and my cousin-in-law was part of a gay couple for ten years, but then, sadly enough, they broke up. :frowning:

I know a gay couple, a United Church of Christ pastor and his husband, who had a little boy together, but I don’t know what the story behind the acquisition of the boy was. They are still together.

i knew two gay women who did the sperm bank thing as a couple. They have three kids and are still together.

I knew two heterosexual couples who adopted and it was holy heck: they decided to go foreign countries and adopt over there, which meant long, expensive and complicated trips.

People who want children want them; it may stem from a vocation for parenthood, one I don’t have myself. One of the heterosexual mothers said to me, “I could NOT imagine my life without kids.” I imagine that is true for most people who adopt or want to adopt.

Best wishes!:wink:

As you know, our system considers it unethical for a lawyer to argue a position which lacks any plausible legal basis.

So if there is a plausible legal basis for a position being argued, but only because of unjust laws (there would be no plausible legal argument for it under a just legal system), would it not be wrong to argue for an abortion?

Well, I guess I played stump-the-priest and won. Despite being a canon lawyer, he said he was out of his league on this, and referred me to a national ethics council (desiring to see their response too). Humble and wise, in my opinion. I will do as he suggests.

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