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Minnesota: Teen denied confirmation for backing gay marriage

BY NATASHA BARSOTTI — Lennon Cihak cannot receive the Catholic sacrament of confirmation because he objected to a Minnesota ballot amendment that would have changed the state's constitution to define marriage as being between one man and one woman, according to Inforum, a North Dakota news site.

Reverend Gary LaMoine, of the Assumption Church in Barnesville, Minnesota, is refusing to administer the rite to the 17-year-old after finding a Facebook photo of Cihak with a political sign that originally urged people to "Vote Yes" on the amendment but which had been changed to say "No." The sign had been further altered to read "Vote Equal Marriage Rights."

The amendment was defeated in the Nov 6 election. 

Cihak's mother, Shana, who says she was confirmed at the same church, was asked to attend a private discussion with the priest, at which she was told her son would not be confirmed, the report says. Cihak notes that other students in his confirmation class "liked" his Facebook posting and are being permitted to be confirmed. His mother objects to her son being singled out and doesn't plan to return to the church.

Her husband, who was baptized at Assumption Church, says the family is not being allowed to receive Communion there and now fears he won't be buried alongside his parents.

Shana also approached a bishop, Michael Hoeppner, to explore other options for her son but was told "not much could be done," Inforum states. 

"A St Joseph’s Catholic School teacher in Moorhead was also let go earlier this year after she expressed concern about Hoeppner preaching to children about the marriage amendment," the report says.

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