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Cardinal Wuerl: Same-sex marriage ruling is ‘law of the land’

Cardinal Donald Wuerl, archbishop of Washington, speaks during a news conference at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington, Tuesday, June 30, 2015, to discuss the schedule for Pope Francis' visit to Washington in September. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

WASHINGTON — The District’s top Catholic leader has weighed in on the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize same-sex marriage.

“The law of the land is the law of the land,” says Archbishop of Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl. “We certainly follow what the law says. That doesn’t mean we change the word of God. That doesn’t mean we change the scriptures, or the church’s millennia-long tradition of what marriage is.”

Everyone is welcome to the faith, Wuerl says: “Nobody is turned away because of their sexual identity, because of their race because of their ethnic background. And are we not all struggling to live the gospel?”

The Catholic church teaching will not change, but Cardinal Wuerl says Pope Francis has been more inclusive.

“He keeps saying, ‘Go out. Go out and meet people where they are. And in that encounter, walk with them, accompany them,'” Wuerl continues. “I think that’s what the church is saying. We all need to walk together as we try to make our way closer and closer to God.”

Churches across the country are divided over same-sex marriage. According to a recent Pew Research Center poll, 56 percent of Catholics support same-sex marriage, while 55 percent of Protestants do not. Eighty-five percent of religiously unaffiliated people support gay marriage.

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