In December 2013, the students at Eastside Catholic School in Seattle experienced an egregious injustice when our beloved vice principal, Mark Zmuda, was forced to resign because of his marriage to another man.
When administrators learned that Mr. Z had married his partner over the summer, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seattle insisted that he step down. As vice principal and the high school's swim coach, Mr. Z was well liked and widely respected by students and our community. I'm the senior class president and I can say that the student body is outraged that an incredible administrator, coach, and human being was fired solely because of his love and marriage for another human being.
When we heard the news, we started off with a sit-in at our school to support Mr. Z, but we know much more will be required for Catholic schools like ours to keep talented educators at our schools. We've heard of other teachers across the country who have also been forced out for similar reasons and we know it will take a national campaign to save our teachers.
We are uniting in order to change the Catholic Church’s opposition of gay marriage. We've been encouraged by recent statements on these issues made by Pope Francis and we feel it's time to revisit the policy and act as Jesus would have -- loving and supporting every person regardless of their marital status. United, we want to end the policy that takes away passionate and talented educators from Catholic schools so that the Catholic Church can achieve its mission of acting with unconditional love in every situation.
Please join me in asking the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to revisit its policies and help us keep Mr. Z and other teachers across the country.