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Website to collect Catholic bishops' DVDs is launched

  • Article by: KELLY SMITH
  • Star Tribune
  • September 28, 2010 - 10:32 PM

A group of Catholic Minnesotans has launched a website to collect and protest DVDs supporting a ban on gay marriage that are being distributed by the Catholic Church.

About six like-minded Catholics from various metro parishes launched the site ReturnTheDVD.org on Monday. Contending that the DVD deals with "misguided priorities,'' they said Tuesday that they are urging people to use the website to donate to causes that aid the poor.

In DVDs that are expected to start arriving at homes of 400,000 Catholics on Wednesday, St. Paul and Minneapolis Archbishop John Nienstedt stresses the need for a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage in Minnesota.

"We just disagree that this is a priority," said Paul Lipetzky, of St. Louis Park, a lifelong Catholic. "It's really not a matter we should be about as compassionate Christians. I think we should stress inclusiveness and the poor and people in need."

They're asking people to send them the DVDs in the next six to eight weeks. They said that they will deliver them to Nienstedt with a letter encouraging the bishops to focus on homelessness over other "misguided priorities."

We "disagree with the time and energy that's been put into this," said Bob Radecki of Burnsville. "We just wanted to come up with something positive."

The 18-minute DVD was produced by the Minnesota Catholic Conference, which represents bishops statewide. Its production and mailing was funded by a private donation.

Archdiocese spokesman Dennis McGrath said the site organizers' "premise is flawed. Nobody spends more money on the poor and needy than the Catholic Church."

McGrath said the website's accusation that $1 million was spent on the DVDs is "ridiculous" and that the organizers misinterpret the DVDs' meaning, thinking it's political. "It's not an anti-gay DVD. ... it's pro-traditional one-man, one-woman marriage," he said.

Kelly Smith • 612-673-4141

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