PORTLAND, Maine — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland is offering a statewide series of meetings based on Bishop Richard Malone’s pastoral letter “Marriage: Yesterday … Today … Always” to teach the public about marriage and argue the need to preserve it as union between a man and a woman.

Mainers will go to the polls on Nov. 6 to vote on a referendum that would allow same-sex couples to marry in Maine. Malone had said earlier this year the diocese would not involve itself in the political campaign opposing the referendum, but instead would focus on teaching people about the sanctity of marriage as it is currently defined.

Each Diocese event will feature a guest speaker and a question-and-answer panel discussion.

Events will be held:

• 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8, Our Lady of Good Hope, 7 Union St., Camden

• 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 9, Knights of Columbus Hall, 5 Gilman Falls Road, Old Town

• 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 9, Notre Dame, 116 Silver St., Waterville

• 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14, Holy Rosary Church, 34 Vaughn St., Caribou

• 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20, St. Maximilian Kolbe, 150 Black Point Road, Scarborough

• 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21, St. Martha, 34 Portland Road, Kennebunk

• 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 27, Knights of Columbus Hall, 109 Spring St., Gardiner

• Noon Sunday, Oct. 28, St. Philip, 2365 Turner Road, Auburn

• 5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 28, St. Christopher, 4 Barrell Lane, York

“I invite everyone to come and learn why marriage, the union of a man and a woman, is the foundation of the family and the best place for children to be loved, cared for, educated, and taught to be productive, creative, upright, and responsible citizens,” said Bishop Malone in a press statement.

Malone, who was bishop of Maine’s Diocese for eight years, was appointed bishop of the Diocese of Buffalo, N.Y., on May 29, and installed there on Aug. 10. Pope Benedict XVI appointed Malone as apostolic administrator in Maine, in addition to his New York duties, until the pope names a new bishop for the Portland diocese.