The reluctance of some agencies working with children to say what they really think about the row over gay adoption and the Catholic Church bears testimony to the sensitive nature of the issue.
Of course religious sensitivities must be taken account of, but the welfare of the child has to come first. So would church authorities really carry out their threat to close down Catholic adoption agencies, knowing what a damaging effect this would have?
Cardinal Murphy McCormack’s statement earlier this week appeared conciliatory in tone though there was a definite sense that he was keeping his powder dry for later.
But this issue needs to be resolved now. The fact is that what children in care need are committed, competent and loving parents and these qualities can be provided by all sorts of couples, including those of the same sex.
No one has a right to adopt whatever their sexuality. But if they are assessed and found suitable their sexuality should not count against them. From April, this will be the law and the Catholic Church must come to terms with that and formally withdraw the threat to shut its agencies. CC