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Petition asks bishop to change baptism policy for same-sex couples

Church officials: Policy asking for scrutiny of certain applications doesn't exist

MADISON, Wis. - A group of Catholics is petitioning the Madison diocese to clarify its stance on the baptism of children with same-sex parents.

The group presented a petition with 20,000 signatures at St. Patrick's Thursday.

The group claims Bishop Robert Morlino asked priests to contact the diocese if they got requests to baptize children of same-sex couples so they could look more closely at their applications.

They said the church should baptize children regardless of their parents' sexual orientation.

"It just puts an extra burden on them, and I just feel very strongly that process should be eliminated and they should be welcome into the kingdom of heaven, just like anybody else," said Lois Fritz.

The petitioners are asking Morlino to give control back to the priests in those decisions.

The diocese issued a statement saying there is no such policy requiring priests to send the bishop baptism applications from same-sex couples.

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