Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York (Photo: Patrick Semansky, AP)
(USA TODAY) -- Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the top U.S. Catholic prelate, says the
Catholic Church has to make sure that its defense of marriage is not
reduced to an attack on gays.
Dolan is president of the U.S.
Conference of Catholic Bishops and last month was reputed to have
gathered some votes in the Vatican conclave where Pope Francis was
He made his remarks on two morning talk shows
last weekend, just days after the Supreme Court heard arguments in two
same-sex marriage cases.
Dolan says the church hasn't "been too good at that" and could work on being more welcoming to gays and lesbians.
who is archbishop of New York, was blasted by gay marriage opponents
for failed lobbying efforts when the state passed gay marriage
legislation in 2011.
On Sunday on the ABC News program This Week, he said the church tries its "darnedest to make sure we're not an anti-anybody."
says he would tell gay men and lesbians that God loves them and they're
entitled to friendship. But he says marriage is a union between a man
and a woman "where children can come about naturally."
Dolan made similar comments on CBS' Face the Nation.