Faith Briefs for May 10

CDA meeting Monday

The Catholic Daughters of the Americas Court #1291 will be having their meeting after the 5:30 p.m. Mass Monday at Holy Redeemer. This will be their Memorial Mass for the deceased members from the past year. Guest speaker Rev. Paul Schumacher will present knowledge about Dorothy Day

Court rules North Carolina Catholic school could fire gay teacher who announced his wedding online

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A Catholic school in North Carolina had the right to fire a gay teacher who announced his marriage on social media a decade ago, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday, reversing a judge’s earlier decision.

A panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, reversed a 2021 ruling that Charlotte Catholic High School and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte had violated Lonnie Billard’s federal employment protections against sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The school said Billard wasn’t invited back as a substitute teacher because of his “advocacy in favor of a position that is opposed to what the church teaches about marriage,” a court document said.

U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn determined Billard — a full-time teacher for a decade until 2012 — was a lay employee for the limited purpose of teaching secular classes. Cogburn said a trial would still have to be held to determine appropriate relief for him. A 2020 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court declared Title VII also protected workers who were fired for being gay or transgender.

But Circuit Judge Pamela Harris, writing Wednesday’s prevailing opinion, said that Billard fell under a “ministerial exception” to Title VII that courts have derived from the First Amendment that protects religious institutions in how they treat employees “who perform tasks so central to their religious missions — even if the tasks themselves do not advertise their religious nature.”


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