Colorado Senator Pat Steadman says there is no pleasing Catholic groups on civil unions and he is done trying.

Steadman, who is openly gay, is the Senate sponsor of a bill which seeks to recognize gay and lesbian couples with civil unions.

It is Steadman's third attempt with the measure. In previous sessions, Republicans who controlled the House blocked the proposals from reaching the House floor. Rather than allowing a vote on the bill last year, Republicans shut down voting altogether, killing nearly two dozen unrelated measures.

Democrats regained control of the House in November and elected Mark Ferrandino, an openly gay man who sponsored the bill in the House last year, as House speaker, nearly assuring passage in the chamber.

This year's version no longer exempts adoption agencies from placing children with gay couples. The change prompted Catholic groups to threaten to shut down their adoption services.

“We feel it would be a very sad commentary if Colorado forced religious institutions or those who believe in a different framework to do something against their conscience,” Mark Rohlena, president and CEO of Catholic Charities of Central Colorado told Catholic News Agency.

Rohlena said his organization “probably would cease the operation of our adoption programs” if told it could not discriminate against gay couples in civil unions.

Steadman noted that the Catholic Church fought against the bill last year when it had the exemption.

“Near as I can tell, there's no pleasing them, so I'm not even going to try,” Steadman told The Denver Post.

The Colorado Catholic Conference will stage a protest rally against passage of the civil unions bill at the State Capitol in Denver on Friday, January 25.

The bill's first committee hearing is set for Wednesday in the Senate.