Equally Blessed members respond to the Pope's comments on gender

During a meeting with Polish bishops while attending World Youth Day, Pope Francis concluded his remarks by complaining that children are being taught “that everyone can choose their gender.” He also called this “ideological colonization” by “very influential countries.”

Members of the Equally Blessed Coalition had this to say, following the Pope's remarks.

Call To Action

Call To Action is not only disappointed and dismayed by his remarks, but believe his willful ignorance is dangerous to those in the transgender community.

Equally Blessed members respond to the Pope's call for LGBT forgiveness

In a press conference on Sunday, June 26, during a flight back to Rome, Pope Francis said that the Catholic Church must apologize to gay people: "The church must say it's sorry for not having comported itself well many times, many times. ... I believe that the church not only must say it's sorry ... to this person that is gay that it has offended. But it must say it's sorry to the poor, also, to mistreated women, to children forced to work." He then clarified: "When I say the church: Christians. The church is holy.

Equally Blessed members express concern about Crux moving to Knights of Columbus

DignityUSA, a member of the Equally Blessed coalition, has expressed grave concern after receiving news that the Knights of Columbus would underwrite the Catholic news service "Crux," effective April 1, 2016.

Noting that the Knights of Columbus have contributed over $6.25 million towards campaigns and measures that oppose same-sex marriage, Executive Director of DignityUSA Marianne Duddy-Burke asked:

Archbishop Chaput responds to a pilgrim's open letter

Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput recently responded to one of the Equally Blessed pilgrims who will attend the World Meeting of Families this September in Philadelphia, along with almost two dozen others who want to make sure that LGBT families and voices are heard.

Susanne wrote, in part:

Catholic Church infringing on personal lives

For several years now, we have seen a troubling trend in Catholic places of employment. Bishops are overstepping to meddle in employees' personal lives. Firing competent, beloved teachers for same-sex marriages, requiring whole staffs to agree to statements calling contraception evil, and forbidding discussion of women's equality in the church are now being included in morality clauses that administrators, teachers, and staff must sign.

New contracts, like the most recent one in San Francisco, now govern whom one can marry, use of birth control and other reproductive choices, and in the most egregious of cases, what events one can attend and whom one can and cannot associate with. Attending your nephew's wedding to his husband, or posting a congratulatory message on Facebook, could now cost you your job.

Why Won't U.S. Catholic Bishops Listen to Gay Laypeople?

By Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry

(Originally published on The Advocate.)

November 14, 2014: As the U.S. Catholic bishops met in Baltimore this week, they discussed the synod on marriage and family that took place in Rome last month. That meeting sent shockwaves around the globe because of the frank discussion of birth control, cohabitation, divorce and remarriage, and, perhaps the biggest stunner of all, LGBT people.

The Shame of the Catholic Workplace

The list keeps getting longer.

A teacher in New York City. An organist near Atlanta. A teacher in Chicago. A music director in Charlotte. A teacher in Columbus.

At an accelerating rate, Catholic schools and churches around the country are firing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees who have decided that they can no longer deny who they are and whom they love.

Equally Blessed Supports Scouts for Equality

Equally Blessed, a coalition of four Catholic groups that have spent more than 120 years working on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their families, issues this letter of support for the work and mission of Scouts for Equality.

Earlier this year, the Boy Scouts of America announced that they were reconsidering the policy of excluding gay boys and gay and lesbian leaders from participation in BSA. Scouts for Equality has been a leader in the efforts to encourage the Boy Scouts to repeal the policy because of its deleterious effects.

It is with admiration and respect that we endorse the work that Scouts for Equality pursues. It is our hope that through combined and continued efforts the Boy Scouts of American may come to see the love that God has for all.

Lay Catholics Are Changing the Hierarchy's Position on Same-Sex Relationships

By Francis DeBernardo and Sister Jeannine Gramick, SL

Reform-minded Catholics are often told that the church is not a democracy. In the conventional political sense, that may be true. But the church ministers in democracies. And in country after country, Catholic voters have gone to the polls, ignored the often heavy-handed lobbying of their bishops, and voted in favor of marriage equality, or legislators who support marriage equality. They are changing the teachings of the church by changing the culture in which the church functions.

The choice before our bishops now is whether to continue a divisive battle that will only diminish their own authority, or to follow where the laity has led.