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Garvey and other administration officials later met with those student leaders, promising more dialogue about the LGBT community and acknowledging a need for more support on campus, Fecteau said.
In response to Metro Weekly inquiries, Victor Nakas, associate vice president for public affairs for the university, issued a statement via email that reiterated the school’s reasoning.
”In declining the request for official university recognition of CUAllies, the administrators indicated their belief that, in spite of the group’s stated intent to uphold Catholic Church teachings, it would be extremely difficult for that pledge to be honored over time,” Nakas wrote. ”They pointed out that there is a fine line, easily crossed, between a group dedicated to education and support of individuals who identify themselves as homosexuals and one that engages in advocacy on behalf of a homosexual lifestyle.”
Fecteau says he disagrees with administrators’ logic, equivalent to refusing to recognize the College Democrats, he says, because of the potential that the organization might become an ”advocacy” organization on behalf of causes, such as abortion, that conflict with church teaching.
Still, he says, CUAllies will continue to offer events, service projects and open dialogue about how LGBT individuals can participate fully in their shared Catholic faith.
Fecteau adds that the new speaker of the Student Association is supportive of the student-wide referendum proposal.
Fecteau warns, however, that university officials could still refuse recognition even if such a referendum passed. But, he adds, at the very least such a rejection would show the university making a decision that was opposed by the majority of its students and put them under tremendous pressure to make the university more welcoming to members of the LGBT community.