Dear fellow Wichita Catholic,
There is no easy way to say this, so I’ll get right to the point. The cultural battle over what Pope Francis calls the “evil of gender ideology” is now being forced upon the citizens people of Wichita. It is taking the form of a proposed city ordinance and your help is needed to help stop it.
Let me begin by stating the obvious: We are all sinners in need of mercy. The Catholic Church invites everyone to a personal encounter with Christ. Catholic Church Teaching includes the genuine Truth about the human person--man and woman--made in the image and likeness of God. Questions surrounding the many and varied topics connected to “sexual orientation” are complex and often confusing for some.
True Catholics do not “hate” certain people or unjustly discriminate. To contend otherwise is simply not true. At the same time, we will not be intimidated or bullied by individuals or special interest groups seeking to impose a false ideology and anthropology about the human person. We will not be forced to take part activity that in contrary to our Faith and a properly formed conscience.
Now, here is the Wichita story.
The Mayor of Wichita and certain members of the City Council are pressing forward with what they are calling a “non-discrimination ordinance,” or NDO. That sounds harmless enough, but it is not.
Simply put, if passed and enforced, this NDO will be used to specifically target people of faith like you and me. In fact, this NDO may well force Catholics and others to either violate our deeply held religious beliefs or face civil penalties, including fines of up to $2,000. There is even a provision calling for “educational requirements” for convicted violators.
Sexual orientation and gender identity ordinances like this NDO are being systematically introduced and passed throughout the country and in Kansas. They carve out special protections to people based on their self-defined “sexual orientation.”
Under conditions of the proposed ordinance, Catholic organizations in Wichita could be compelled take action contrary to their deeply held religious beliefs. Likewise, individual Catholic business owners could face fines unless they cooperate in activity that violates their deeply held religious beliefs. We’ve seen this happen with bakers, florists and others around the country.
In fact, under the language of the proposed NDO, the Catholic Church in Wichita would have less rights in employment than it does under federal law.
In summary, the proposed Wichita NDO being considered by the City Council this coming Tuesday is not only unnecessary, it is a legal bludgeon being used to target Catholics and other people of faith. The proposed ordinance appears to have the votes to pass, but there is still time for your voice to be heard.
Please let your city council member and the Mayor know how you feel. Respectfully but clearly insist that they NOT pass this NDO. Their contact information is below.
Thank you, and God bless you.
St. Joseph, Head of the Holy Family, pray for us!
Written by Chuck Weber
Approved by Bishop Carl Kemme
Mayor Brandon Whipple BWhipple@wichita.gov
To locate your City Council representative: https://www.wichita.gov/Council/Pages/Maps.aspx
WICHITA CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS
Vice Mayor Brandon Johnson, District 1: firstname.lastname@example.org
Becky Tuttle, District 2: BTuttle@wichita.gov
Jared Cerullo, District 3: JCerullo@wichita.gov
Jeff Blubaugh, District 4: JBlubaugh@wichita.gov
Bryan Frye, District 5: BFrye@wichita.gov
Cindy Claycomb District 6: CClaycomb@wichita.gov
Father Hien Nguyen