How Often Must this Happen To Gay Catholics?

Dignity Begins Within

I am sorry that the parishioners of “The Rainbow Ministry of St. Cecilia Parish” are outraged over the “All are Welcome” liturgy being cancelled. This is the difficulty with the Church Teaching saying on the one hand “you are welcome,” but must not publicly self identify yourselves in a positive light.  The current “Teaching Magisterium” is promoting homophobia, and anything that challenges the Church’s message of homophobia such as this welcoming liturgy will be suspect and put down if the spot light of publicity is drown to it.

The Rainbow Sash Movement makes no excuses for what the Archdiocese of Boston has done, it is wrong. Nor do we believe that glossing over what the Church truly teaches about the homosexual person is beneficial to us. In the long run it only leads to confusion and hurt. Once again I feel shamed by the actions of a local hierarchy, but not surprised by his behavior.

In my opinion, a painful question must be asked of those who minister to people with same sex attractions in the Catholic Church, are all people truly welcome in the Church. Judging by the homophobic attacks not only on our dignity, but also on our families one could reasonably question whether all are welcome. Only by clearly understanding what the Church Teaches based on reality of that teaching, and not the fantasy of what it should be, can we begin to confront the issue of homophobia.

Trying to twist and turn the Teaching to suit our needs only leads to pain of innocents which is what I believe happened in this Boston Parish. The Teaching of the Church on the homosexual person is wrong, it does evil to same sex people and their families, and there should be no ambiguity on this matter.

On Pentecost Sunday members of the Rainbow Sash Movement will enter Cathedrals around the nation wearing Rainbow Sashes. We wear the Sashes to publicly self identify ourselves as members of both the Roman Catholic, and LGBT Communities. The response from our Catholic Bishops has been to deny us the Holy Eucharist. According to the past president of US Catholic Conference of Catholic Bishops, Cardinal Francis George, we are making a political statement. A position that has to do more with the Cardinals homophobia, than it has do with our intentions.

We believe that the Gospel Message of Pentecost is about inclusion not exclusion. Also we understand that homophobia must be challenged where ever it raises its ugly head.

What is called for now by those who minister to LGBT people in the Church is a view that is grounded in the reality of our experiences and the integrity to really look at what the Church’s Teaches about us. I am not shocked that the Liturgy was cancelled, but I am shocked that some people in Church obviously believe that the Church welcomes all people.

Joe Murray
Executive Director
Rainbow Sash Movement

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