(CNSNews.com) – Gov. Chris Christie said last week that.he is “happy” for same-sex couples who got married in New Jersey after his administration withdrew its appeal of a court order to start issuing them marriage licenses.
"I'm happy for them, if they're happy," Christie, a Roman Catholic who attended an inaugural Mass in 2010 after being first elected governor, said at a press conference in Union City on Nov. 6th, the day after his historic reelection.
When asked if he had an emotional reaction to same-sex couples being able to obtain marriage licenses in New Jersey, Christie replied, “Not really."
Christie told TV host Piers Morgan in June 2011 that while he was opposed to same-sex marriage, he supported civil unions for homosexuals. “I think we can have civil unions that can help to give the same type of legal rights to same-sex couples that marriage gives them.”
The Catechism of the Catholic Church, the doctrinal manual for over a billion Catholics worldwide, teaches that marriage is exclusively between a man and a woman: “Sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman. In marriage the physical intimacy of the spouses becomes a sign and pledge of spiritual communion. Marriage bonds between baptized persons are sanctified by the sacrament.”
According to the catechism, “Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection."
As CNSNews.com previously reported, the Christie administration withdrew its appeal of a court order requiring state officials to begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses after the New Jersey Supreme Court denied a stay of a lower court’s decision. Assemblyman and former New Jersey State Democratic Party Chairman Joseph Cryan told CNSNews.com at the time that Christie “saw the court was gonna go against him and he didn’t wanna face an override and as a result, it was time to cash in his chips on the issue.”
Last August, Christie also signed a bill banning gay conversion therapy. The law was upheld on appeal by U.S. District Court Judge Freda L. Wolfson, an appointee of George W. Bush, who wrote that the law "on its face does not target speech, and ‘counseling’ is not entitled to special constitutional protection merely because it is primarily carried out through talk therapy.”
The lawsuit, filed by two therapists from the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality and the American Association of Christian Counselors, argued that the law infringed upon their right to freely exercise their religion and did not allow parents to “direct the upbringing and education of their children according to their sincerely held religious beliefs.”
A separate lawsuit was filed last week, also in the U.S. District Court in Camden, by an unidentified couple on the grounds that state law now only permits “gay-affirming” therapy. A federal judge is scheduled to decide by December 2 whether to grant the unnamed plaintiffs a temporary injunction to stop enforcement of the law Christie signed.