Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-11-15
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Loyola bans same-sex wedding ceremonies in new policy
by Derrick Clifton
2014-02-20

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Loyola University Chicago changed its guidelines for wedding ceremonies on campus, adopting an official policy ahead of Illinois' equal-marriage law on June 1. The new policy, enacted last December, only allows Catholic weddings in the university's Madonna della Strada Chapel. All other civil or religious weddings, including same-sex unions, are banned from campus facilities.

The decision also comes after a Loyola student launched a Change.org petition last September, urging university administrators to allow same-sex ceremonies on campus. Christine Irvine, a Loyola junior studying visual communication, started the petition after officials denied her request to use university facilities for her upcoming wedding. Irvine said there were no problems until officials learned she would marry a woman. To date, the petition has more than 2,900 signatures.

In her first interview about Loyola's new policy, Irvine told Windy City Times that the decision doesn't seem bad to anyone who may not know how it came about. She believes the university made the decision to specifically forbid same-sex ceremonies on campus.

"It's really disheartening," Irvine said. "It's a sign of the non-acceptance and non-tolerance of the LGBT students on campus ... a sign of disrespect of our love compared to our peers."

Before Loyola enacted its official policy last December, the university's standard practice welcomed ceremonies "legally recognized" in Illinois. But despite legal recognition of same-sex civil unions in Illinois, those ceremonies were still forbidden at Loyola venues.

Irvine said the distinction never made sense to her.

"I think they were struggling for a way to justify excluding same-sex couples from having their ceremonies on campus. And that was the best they could come up with," she said. "The discriminatory decision they made wasn't a policy at that point, it was just something they were choosing to do as an institution."

University officials haven't made a formal announcement about the new policy, but they share it on a case-by-case basis, according to a Loyola spokeswoman.

"It's the congruency with our Jesuit and Catholic tradition that caused us to implement this official policy as a result of the forthcoming Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act," said Maeve Kiley, Loyola's director of communication. "Our policy reflects our desire to reserve and use our facilities and campuses for rituals and ceremonies that are congruent with our obligations and values as a Jesuit, Catholic institution. That is why we are limiting weddings to Catholic ceremonies in our Catholic chapel."

Loyola's religious affiliation and mission affords the university exemptions granted under the equal-marriage law, which states that religious organizations are not required to provide their facilities for wedding ceremonies and receptions. The law also protects religious organizations from legal penalties for refusing to solemnize a marriage or rent religious facilities for receptions, should the type of ceremony contradict religious beliefs. Loyola still allows members of the public, including same-sex couples, to rent their venues for wedding receptions and other events.

However, the law's definition of "religious facilities" states that educational facilities are not exempt. With Loyola's standing as both a religious organization and an educational institution, there could be room for interpretation based on how the law is worded. But the wedding and reception venues offered by the university aren't necessarily used for educational purposes.

Kiley said that no current wedding ceremony reservations will be impacted by the new policy. On average, 20 ceremonies were hosted each year at university facilities other than the Madonna della Strada Chapel. Members of the public, including same-sex couples, can still rent Loyola venues for wedding receptions.

As for Irvine's wedding, she and her fiancee already made other plans for their June ceremony and reception. After Loyola rejected their request, the couple chose Firehouse Chicago at 1545 W. Rosemont Ave.

Irvine said she's disheartened that Loyola officials didn't extend the previous guideline to allow same-sex marriages, which will be legally recognized come June.

"[Loyola] claims to be a progressive institution having a commitment to social justice and I expected that they'd have no problem with it," Irvine said, adding that she feels community members were ready for a shift. "It's just disappointing that they had a good opportunity to show leadership and I honestly feel they failed the LGBT community."


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Planned Parenthood of Illinois Marks Transgender Awareness Week 2017-11-17 - [Chicago] — Nov. 14-20 is Transgender Awareness Week, dedicated to educating people about the transgender community and raising awareness of the issues facing ...


Gay News

HRC & Trans People of Color Coalition: Fatal Violence Against Trans Community rising 2017-11-17 - WASHINGTON - Today, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) Foundation and the Trans People of Color Coalition ( TPOCC ) released A ...


Gay News

Rev. Jesse L. Jackson announces Parkinson's diagnosis 2017-11-17 - The following is a letter from Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. Dear Friends and Supporters, On July 17, 1960, ...


Gay News

Rally Nov. 16 for release of father with health issues from detention center 2017-11-16 - After eight months in detention, a Chicago father's health conditions have worsened drastically and his family and community are demanding his release before ...


Gay News

Lipinski opponent, mom of trans child, to host Sidetrack event 2017-11-16 - Marie Newman, first-time candidate for U.S. Congress in the 3rd Congressional District of Illinois, will be hosting a fundraiser at Sidetrack Thursday, Dec. ...


Gay News

Community groups to boycott the Magnificent Mile on Black Friday 2017-11-15 - Members of churches, unions, and community organizations will fan out from the Water Tower at 806 N. Michigan Ave. onto the Magnificent Mile ...


Gay News

Researchers: No simple solutions for tackling LGBTQ youth-homelessness crisis 2017-11-15 - A newly released brief by an area research institute is shedding light on the issue of youth homelessness, which, according to the report, ...


Gay News

Morningstar hosts investing for equality discussion 2017-11-15 - Morningstar's Out@Morningstar employee resource group hosted an "Investing for Equality" discussion featuring Morningstar's Director of Sustainability Research John Hale and Trillium Management CEO ...


Gay News

Australians approve marriage equality 2017-11-15 - Australia has voted to change the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples in results announced Nov. 15, with 61.6 percent of the ...


Gay News

Leadership Conference opposes Don Willett for 5 Circuit Court of Appeals 2017-11-14 - November 14, 2017 Dear Senator: On behalf of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Hum­­­­an Rights, a coalition of more ...


 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.