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Three Catholic dioceses in Illinois are continuing a court fight over Illinois' new civil unions law, while another is withdrawing from the litigation.

The Catholic Diocese of Peoria announced Thursday it plans to stop providing state-funded services and withdraw from the court battle.

Catholic Charities affiliated with the Joliet, Springfield and Belleville dioceses filed an appeal Tuesday of a Sangamon County judge's ruling siding with the state of Illinois. The charities wish to continue their state contracts, while referring unmarried couples who want to be adoptive or foster parents to other agencies.

The state says that's discriminatory, a violation of the civil unions law.

Bishop Daniel Jenky of the Peoria Diocese says the decision to withdraw from the litigation and from providing state-funded social services was not made lightly.

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