Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Diocese of Helena was right to fire Shaela Evenson

Since I was critical of the decision of the Diocese of Helena to fire Shaela Evenson, who was only described at the time in the news as an "unmarried pregnant teacher," I will now retract that opinion.  The diocese was quite right to fire an unmarried lesbian pregnant teacher who deliberately manufactured a baby in a choice to raise him without his father (hat tip: Deacon's Bench):
The Butte Central teacher fired for being pregnant has given birth to a boy.

Shaela Evenson delivered Brody Tobin Evenson on March 7 at St. James Healthcare in Butte. Brody weighed 6 pounds, 15 ounces and was 21 inches long.

This is the first child for Evenson and her partner, Marilyn Tobin, both of Butte.

Evenson taught sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade literature and physical education at the Catholic school for the past nine years. She was dismissed Jan. 10 after the Helena Diocese received an anonymous letter about her pregnancy.

Both Superintendent Pat Haggarty and Evenson’s Ohio-based lawyer, Brian Butler, say Evenson was not fired for being a lesbian. [...]

The district has said it fired Evenson for violating the terms of her contract, which required her to practice the tenets of the Catholic faith inside and outside the classroom.

I have been critical of schools firing unmarried women who become pregnant in the natural way.  Sure, it's a grave sin to engage in fornication, and an unrepentant fornicator--male or female--would clearly be violating a contract like the one described.  But pregnancy by itself isn't evidence of unrepentant and habitual fornication.  More discretion, more discernment, and more mercy to a sorrowful single mother facing a crisis pregnancy might be needed in individual cases.

But it is profoundly evil to manufacture a baby in such a way that he is deprived of his rightful relationship with his father, and this would be true if we were talking about heterosexual married teachers using IVF or situations like this one involving lesbians.  Granted, the article doesn't give much info about whether Evanson used IVF or a turkey baster or some other method to get pregnant, but one thing is clear: the child is hers and that of some unknown man who is being denied his right to natural fatherhood.  Tobin is neither the child's father nor his mother, and it is evil to pretend otherwise for the sake of political correctness.

The Diocese of Helena made the right call.  I've been waiting since my first post, when a commenter supplied us with links to lots of information making this situation clearer, for the news media to publicize the fact that this was a situation involving lesbians and deliberate child manufacturing, not a crisis pregnancy about which there might be a real need for mercy and kindness.  I have not seen anything public until now, but now that it is public, I issue my public apology for having been critical of the diocese before, when I naturally assumed a crisis pregnancy situation instead of something as profoundly evil as this.  This woman clearly doesn't belong anywhere near Catholic school children in any position of authority over them.  That she could so callously deprive her own son of his father says everything we need to know about her fitness to teach Catholic children.


Deirdre Mundy said...

Here's my huge question-- why did she last this long? She and the school both admit that they knew she was living in an open Lesbian relationship. So... wasn't THAT a violation of the 'Morality' clause?

Or does the morality clause only apply if the Volleyball team is losing?

Honestly, the story just reinforces my impression that many Catholic schools think that "Catholic" means "obsessed with team sports."

Red Cardigan said...

That is a really good question, Deirdre. Unless the state's employment laws would be problematic even for a religious employer, or something.