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Downstate Catholic University Fires Administrator Over Wedding Announcement

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 12, 2010 2:40PM

Laine Tadlock (right) with wife Kae Helstrom (Rich Saal, Springfield State Journal-Register)
A college administrator at Benedictine University in Springfield is accusing the university of firing her over a wedding announcement she and her wife filed in the Springfield State Journal-Register. Benedictine officials told Laine Tadlock in a letter to her attorney:

"...By publicizing the marriage ceremony in which she participated in Iowa she has significantly disregarded and flouted core religious beliefs which, as a Catholic institution, it is our mission to uphold.”

Tadlock, who was the director of Benedictine's education program, said that the university knew full well that she was a lesbian when they hired her five years ago, and that Benedictine only took offense when her employment at Benedictine was made public in the weeding announcement.

Tadlock and her wife, Kae Helstrom, were married in Iowa this summer and ran the announcement in the SJ-R in July. Benedictine President William Carroll offered Tadlock early retirement in late August after conferring with three Catholic bishops about the announcement.

After reading the announcement, Catholic activist Steve Brady of Petersburg wrote letters to newly installed Springfield Bishop Thomas Paprocki and other church officials condemning Benedictine and Tadlock. Tadlock left Benedictine on October 28; she says she was fired, Benedictine said she resigned.