Oregon Catholic Diocese Refuses to Host Pro-Abortion Gov
by Steven Ertelt
July 30, 2003
Bend, OR (LifeNews.com) — In what is becoming a more common practice across the United States, a Catholic diocese in Oregon is refusing to let a pro-abortion elected official use one of its churches to promote politics.
In this case, the Baker Diocese in Bend, Oregon, has refused to allow pro-abortion Gov. Ted Kulongoski (D-OR) to use a church for a private political speech because of his position on abortion.
Kulongoski was scheduled to speak before a fundraising dinner of the Truman Club at the Holy Trinity church in Sunriver. The event has been rescheduled at a private home. The Truman club is an offshoot of the county Democratic Party.
"His beliefs don’t square with Catholic teaching and certainly made an appearance at a Catholic church very problematic," Father James Logan, chancellor of the Diocese of Baker, told the Bend Bulletin.
Pro-life groups were pleased with the decision.
"We are proud of the Catholics who stood strong for the unborn and successfully stopped our pro-abortion governor from speaking in the church," Oregon Right to Life Executive Director Gayle Attebury told LifeNews.com.
"This should be an encouragement to all pro-lifers that they can overcome the battles before us," Attebury explained.
Logan said the diocese was also unaware of a law disallowing political fundraising on church property.
"The biggest difficulty is that our understanding of the law is that political fund raising can’t happen on any nonprofit property," Logan said.
A group of pro-life advocates said they planned to protect the event had it proceeded.
Kulongoski celebrated the thirtieth anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision earlier this year with leading abortion advocacy groups.
"Very few things go to my core as the right of women to choose," Kulongoski told abortion supporters at the event. "I will not allow this state to move backward."