A coalition of Eastside Catholic school students, alumni and area Catholic leaders on Wednesday will deliver nearly 20,000 petition signatures to Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain, protesting the dismissal last month of the school’s gay vice principal for marrying his male partner.
The school said Mark Zmuda was terminated for violating the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, which reject homosexuality.
Eastside Catholic is an independent school of 935 middle and high-school students, affiliated with, but not run by the Seattle Archdiocese. While Sartain was consulted about the conflict, diocese officials have maintained that he has no control over day-to-day functions of the school, including employment decisions.
The coalition will deliver the petition during an 11:30 press conference at the offices of the diocese, 710 9th Ave. Organized by Faithful America, a nationwide online community of Christians working for social justice, it calls on the archbishop to end the firing of gay teachers.
Eastside Catholic students also plan to deliver the same petition to the school administration.