CCHD Recipient Campaigned Against True Marriage

With the June 2015 Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges (the “Roe v. Wade for Marriage”), the effort to legalize ‘same-sex marriage’ in the United States has attained its long-coveted goal.

In the last 20 years, many of the efforts to preserve in law the definition of true marriage (the Federal Defense of Marriage Act of 1996, California’s Proposition 22 of 2000, and Proposition 8 of 2008) have been overturned, in whole or in part, by unelected judges. Beyond nullifying the democratically expressed will of the people of California and the United States, these court decisions disrupted “the ordered relationship between man and woman created by God”.

At this juncture, and in view of the upcoming annual collection, it may be useful to once again remind Catholics how the Catholic Campaign for Human Development has often funded opponents of traditional marriage both in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and across the country.

It has already been well documented by the American Life League, Reform CCHD Now, the Lepanto Institute, and others, that the leadership of many CCHD grantees, and the coalitions in which they participate, have often taken positions in favor of the redefinition of marriage.

The oft-repeated CCHD retort to such revelations is that no funds were spent on activities contrary to Church teaching. However, that claim reveals itself as meaningless and disingenuous if we understand the concept of “fungibility” and simply “follow the money”.


This is How Fungibility Works!

Take this example of how one CCHD grant recipient campaigned against traditional marriage in full view of officials of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

During years 2007 to 2012, one of the recipients of CCHD funds from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles was the Institute for Urban Research and Development (‘IURD’). IURD was one of the names (DBA’s) used by the Episcopal Housing Alliance (‘EHA’), a non-profit organization based in Pasadena. In toto, CCHD gave to IURD approximately $40,000 in local grants, typically $10,000 per year, ostensibly for an IURD food industry training project called “Mama’s Hot Tamales”.



However, the EHA/IURD is an entity of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles (‘EDLA’), and the Episcopal Bishop of Los Angeles, the Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno, serves as president of EHA/IURD.


In the years before the first CCHD grant to IURD, and at least since year 2003, Bishop Bruno has publicly endorsed the blessing of ‘same sex unions’.

“In addition, we no longer understand procreation to be the chief reason for sex,” he said. “Even the marriage service in the Prayer Book states that the purpose of marriage is to provide mutual joy, help and comfort, and only lastly procreation.” [LA Times December 7, 2003]

Subsequently, in a well publicized 2004 ceremony, Bishop Bruno blessed the same-sex union of an Episcopal priest in Los Angeles. [LA Times June 2, 2004]

These actions reflected more than his personal opinion and some niceties of Episcopal liturgy. In 2000, the Episcopal Church in California publicly declared its opposition to Proposition 22, the California Defense of Marriage initiative that specified only marriage between one man and one woman is recognized in the State of California:

“The uphill campaign to defeat the measure got a boost Sunday night when bishops of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the United Methodist Church showed up to denounce the ballot measure.” [LA Times, January 24, 2000]

And in 2006, the General Convention of the Episcopal Church resolved to “oppose any state or federal constitutional amendment that prohibits same-sex civil marriage or civil unions.” [Episcopal archives]

In May 2008, while under the first of four Archdiocese of Los Angeles CCHD grants, Bishop Bruno celebrated the overturning of Proposition 22 by the California Supreme Court, writing:

“Today’s Supreme Court decision on same-gender relationships is important because it reflects our baptismal vow to “strive for justice and peace among all people and respect the dignity of every human being” and our commitment to justice and mercy for all people.

“The Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles has been a leader in working for the rights of all people in the State of California, and that work is honored in today’s ruling. The canons of our church, under “Rights of the Laity” (Canon 1:17.5), forbid discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, disabilities or age. We affirm equal rights for all.

“We will continue to advocate for equality in the future and will do so at the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, which will meet in Anaheim in 2009.

“I celebrate and give thanks for this decision of the court and look forward with joy and excitement to a future of justice and mercy for all people in the State of California and the Episcopal Church.

“To paraphrase St. Paul, there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, gay nor straight in Jesus Christ our Lord.” [EDLA Website]

The subsequent effort to reverse the California Supreme Court’s decision was Proposition 8, the California Marriage Protection Act. Supported by the Catholic Church, it qualified for the November 2008 ballot. In response, Bishop Bruno and the EDLA then redoubled their efforts to oppose true marriage and to legalize ‘same-sex marriage’ by creating a ‘Marriage Equality Task Force’. “[C]onvened in 2008 during the Proposition 8 campaign, the task force brings together pastors, activists and scholars to resource the Bishops and Diocese to advocate for marriage equality.” [EDLA website] 

Nonetheless, during each of the next 3 years, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles CCHD office approved local grants to the Episcopal Diocese’s EHA/IURD agency. And all the while, Bishop Bruno and the EDLA continued their efforts to undermine the meaning of marriage.

In January 2009, Bishop Bruno was one of the signators of an amicus curiae brief submitted to the Supreme Court of California in opposition to Proposition 8. In 2013, he joined in another amicus brief to the Supreme Court of the United States opposing Proposition 8 and the 1996 Federal Defense of Marriage Act. The Supreme Court finally rendered its decision in June 2015, which was duly hailed by Bishop Bruno and the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles.

Since the day of his elevation, Rev. Bruno’s position in support of ‘same-sex marriage’ marriage was no mere private opinion or offhand remark. Every twist and turn of this prolonged battle, and every action of the Episcopal Bishop, has been a major news story in Los Angeles.

These consistent, overt, and public efforts to redefine marriage disqualified the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles and all its entities from CCHD grants even before the first grant was approved. Moreover, during this same time frame, the EHA/IURD had net assets of over $500,000 with its annual revenue sometimes reaching $1.5 million, more than sufficient resources of its own to fund the designated project.

Once again, the CCHD ignored the evidence right before its face that a grantee was working against the teachings of the Catholic Church. And not only were these grants made to an unqualified organization, but were made in preference to all other more deserving projects.

In net effect, CCHD grants from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles served to free up $40,000 of the EDLA’s available resources, allowing the money to be spent elsewhere. At that very time, one of the major initiatives of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles was advancing the cause of same-sex marriage. This is a quintessential example of how the CCHD refuses to understand the meaning of “fungibility”, and thereby supports the undermining of Catholic teaching time and again.


How does the Archdiocese of Los Angeles explain that, while parishioners were praying and working for the legal protection of true marriage, it was funding one of its major attackers?

When you are asked for donations to CCHD this year, can you be confident they will be used to promote causes consistent with the Catholic faith?

One Response to “CCHD Recipient Campaigned Against True Marriage”

  1. Pope Protection: Insights from Former Swiss Guard - Big Pulpit Says:

    […] the ‘Redemption Point’: The Limits of Prophecy – Fr. Robert McTeigue S. J., Alt C. C. H. D. Recipient Campaigned Against True Marriage – Truth About C. C. H. D. Thursday Review of Pope Francis in America – Big Pulpit […]

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