Pope`s apology to gays: “There are people we Christians could have defended and we didn`t”

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June 27, 2016

Pope`s apology to gays: “There are people we Christians could have defended and we didn`t”

 

 

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) welcomes the recent words from Pope Francis, on his return from Armenia to Rome. His first personal statement to the LGBTQI community, since the Orlando shooting, brings light and hope not only for us but also to our families. The wider Church requested and waited for a direct and clear message, following the immediate reactions by the Vatican spokesperson, which did not explicitly call the Orlando shooting homophobic or a hate crime.

Even if Pope Francis` words were brief, their content is powerful. After three years, the Pope amplifies his famous sentence “Who am I to judge?” (2013) to “Who are we to judge?”, extending his original message from a personal reflection to an open call for the whole Church. This is a statement that cannot be underestimated. It shows his vision for the Catholic community.

In the Year of Mercy, he tells Catholics that not only reflection on homosexuality is needed, but also real expressions of humility and simplicity. These need to be part of a comprehensive answer to LGBTQI Catholics` claims for inclusion. When the Pope declares that “I believe that the Church not only should apologize to the person who is gay whom it has offended”, this constitutes a historical milestone. Pope Francis makes visible the deep impact that traditional teachings, the Church’s own omissions, and any other practice or speech could have on LGBTQI Catholics, often resulting in harmful and violent actions against them and their families. Nothing can justify violence as we saw it in Orlando. But we know only too well that subtle homophobic attitudes as well as silence, outright exclusion or forcing people back into the ‘closet’, have so many times prepared the ground for violence.

For the GNRC, the Pope’s call to the Church to ‘apologize’ to LGBTQI Catholics is a great opportunity for all of us to become part of the solution. Following this spirit, we propose as a concrete step, to establish and develop an official commission at the Vatican to formalize that discussion. “We know of the risks the Pope takes in this process and we express our heartfelt thanks and encourage him to keep steadfast on this path of inclusion and justice in the Church” said Fernando Gonzalez (Chile) from the Steering Committee of the GNRC.

“We deeply appreciate how the Pope opens his message not only to LGBTQI people. Those others who live with us at the periphery of the Church, like the poor, exploited women or children forced to work, due to discrimination and the limitations of past pastoral practices are also waiting for our inclusion and consideration. Francis calls us to ask them for forgiveness, too. He shows us in very practical terms how “The Joy of Love” is indeed a major guideline to all the Church.”

Steering Committee of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC).

Puede encontrar la versión en Español de este comunicado de prensa aquí.

Vous trouverez une version Française de cette communiqué de presse ici.

È possibile trovare la versione in lengua Italiana di questa comunicato stampa qui.

Você pode encontrar a versão Portugues deste comunicado de imprensa aqui.

Website: www.rainbowcatholics.org         Mail:          rainbowcatholicsassembly@gmail.com

Twitter:   GNRCatholics                           Facebook: GlobalNetworkofRainbowCatholics

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) brings together organizations and individuals who work for pastoral care and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, questioning, and intersex (LGBTQI) people and their families. The Network works for inclusion, dignity and equality of this community in the Roman Catholic Church and society. The GNRC was founded in October 2015 at the Rome conference, “Ways of Love”, with 80 participants from 30 countries. To date, the GNRC represents 25 groups of LGBTQI Catholics, their families and friends from all continents.

 

GNRC CALLS ON POPE FRANCIS TO CONDEMN ALL LGBTQI HATE AND VIOLENCE

June 19, 2016

THE GLOBAL NETWORK OF RAINBOW CATHOLICS CALLS ON POPE FRANCIS TO CONDEMN ALL LGBTQI HATE AND VIOLENCE

While welcoming the Vatican’s condemnation of the Orlando shooting as a “terrible and absurd violence” and a “manifestation of homicidal folly and senseless hatred”, the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) calls on Pope Francis to join his many bishops around the world and also condemn the LGBTQI hate dimension of this Florida tragedy.

As noted by a growing number of bishops in the United States, Europe, Asia, the Americas and Oceania, President Barack Obama and other world leaders, this massacre was also seen as a hate crime against gay and lesbian people.

Sadly, the continuing comments of some other Catholic cardinals and bishops supporting discrimination against LGBTQI people in the Catholic Church and in legislation, encourages and empowers hatred and violence.

Jesus, and the Gospel values, condemn violence and discrimination. We would welcome Pope Francis joining President Obama and other world leaders in condemning discrimination and violence against LGBTQI people.

As a people of faith, committed to Gospel values, the Catholic church should be at the forefront of condemning homophobic and transphobic violence as well as unjust laws.

Pope Francis can create something good out of the horror of the Orlando massacre by calling on all his bishops and cardinals, and on all world legislators, to reject all violence and legislation that gives cover for LGBTQI hate crimes, actions and sentiments.

Pope Francis called us, in his recent document “Amoris Laetitia”, to be more welcoming and inclusive and to reject all kinds of expressions of violence towards LGBTQI people. Such a statement from Pope Francis reinforces that peace is not just the absence of violence, but also the presence of justice.

Steering Committee of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC).

Puedes encontrar la versión en Español de esta carta aqui.

Vous trouverez une version Française de cette lettre ici.

È possibile trovare la versione in lengua Italiana di questa lettera qui.

Website: www.rainbowcatholics.org         Mail:   rainbowcatholicsassembly@gmail.com

Twiter:    GNRCatholics                             Facebook: GlobalNetworkofRainbowCatholics

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) brings together organizations and individuals who work for pastoral care and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, questioning, and intersex (LGBTQI) people and their families. The Network works for inclusion, dignity and equality of this community in the Roman Catholic Church and society. The GNRC was founded in October 2015 at the Rome conference, “Ways of Love”, with 80 participants from 30 countries. To date, the GNRC represents 25 groups of LGBTQI Catholics, their families and friends from all continents.

The GNRC expresses sorrow and solidarity with the LGBTQI community in the US

June 19, 2016

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) expresses sorrow and solidarity with the LGBTQI community in the United States

We are not far from the pain and sense of incomprehension, that overwhelm us all as LGBTQI people, in these difficult days of grief and a search for hope. For us, LGBTQI Catholics and our families, it is difficult to reflect on and to rationalize an event that took so many lives in Orlando. This situation reminds us of our human limitations and the search for God´s mercy in such moments in which anger and sadness often are our natural and honest reactions.

We consider all people our brothers and sisters. Believing in God or not, professing a particular religion or not. We are people that work for inclusion and justice in society or the Church, and as such, we join the grief of the LGBTQI community in our belief that we are all children of the one God, whether Muslims or Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs, Jews or believers of any other faith. We are all made of the same substance, recalling that the first statement of all religions is that LOVE, above all is fundamental. Praying for the victims, their families and friends has been constant in our local LGBTQI Catholic communities in the days after the mass shooting. You can see how deeply we have been touched through the many expressions of support, through prayers, Masses, letters and articles, inside and outside the United States. In particular, our members at New Ways Ministry and DignityUSA who have done some great, committed work communicating our shared feelings and inner thoughts, since the shocking events of Orlando became public.

Even during these dark days, not only lay people but also our Catholic leaders have made public their solidarity and empathy in ways that we have never seen before. The words from many Bishops, like Robert McElroy of San Diego pledging “I stand with you”, encourage us to keep working. We have hope that through education, ecumenical dialogue and the sharing of our life experiences we’ll make a change in the society and the Church, where still too often we find people who express and justify homophobic attitudes. Pope Francis called, in his recent document “Amoris Laetitia”, to be more welcoming and inclusive and to reject all kind of expressions of violence towards LGBTQI people. Such a statement from Pope Francis reinforces that peace is not just the absence of violence, but also the presence of justice. Our commitment and will, as GNRC, is to walk down that path in Orlando and wherever LGBTQI people suffer from violence, discrimination and victimization, be it in the Americas, Europe, Asia, Oceania or Africa.

May the Peace and Love of God be constantly present and visible in all of us.

Steering Committee of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC).

Sign your support and approval to this letter on change.org .

Puedes encontrar la versión en Español de esta carta aqui.

Vous trouverez une version Française de cette lettre ici.

È possibile trovare la versione in lengua Italiana di questa lettera qui.

Você pode encontrar a versão Portugues deste carta aqui.

Website:    www.rainbowcatholics.org    Mail:          rainbowcatholicsassembly@gmail.com

Twiter:       GNRCatholics                        Facebook: GlobalNetworkofRainbowCatholics

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) brings together organizations and individuals who work for pastoral care and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, questioning, and intersex (LGBTQI) people and their families. The Network works for inclusion, dignity and equality of this community in the Roman Catholic Church and society. The GNRC was founded in October 2015 at the Rome conference, “Ways of Love”, with 80 participants from 30 countries. To date, the GNRC represents 25 groups of LGBTQI Catholics, their families and friends from all continents.

La GNRC expresa su pesar y solidaridad con la comunidad LGBTQI en USA

19 de Junio, 2016

La Red Global de Católicos Arcoíris (GNRC) expresa su pesar y solidaridad con la comunidad LGBTQI en los Estados Unidos

No estamos lejos del dolor y sensación de incomprensión, que nos abruma a todos como personas LGBTQI, en estos difíciles días de pena y búsqueda de esperanza. Para nosotros, Católicos LGBTQI y nuestras familias, se hace complicado reflexionar y racionalizar un evento que tomó tantas vidas en Orlando. Esta situación, nos recuerda nuestras limitaciones humanas y nos lleva a la búsqueda de la misericordia de Dios, en momentos en que la rabia y la tristeza frecuentemente son nuestras reacciones naturales y sinceras.

Consideramos a todas las personas nuestros hermanos y hermanas, creyentes en Dios o no, profesando una religión en particular o no. Somos personas que trabajan por la inclusión y justicia en la sociedad o la Iglesia, y como tales, nos unimos al duelo de la comunidad LGBTQI en nuestra creencia de que somos todos hijos del único Dios, seamos Cristianos, Judíos, Musulmanes, Budistas, Hinduistas, Sikhs, o creyentes de alguna fe. Estamos todos hechos de la misma esencia, recordando que el primer llamado de todas las religiones es el AMOR, por sobre todo fundamentalismo. Orar por las víctimas, sus familias y amigos ha sido una constante en nuestras comunidades Católicas LGBTQI en los días posterior al tiroteo masivo. Pueden ver que tan profundamente nos ha tocado a través de las muchas expresiones de apoyo, por medio de oraciones, Misas, cartas y artículos, dentro y fuera de los Estados Unidos. En particular, nuestros miembros de New Ways Ministry y DignityUSA que han hecho un gran y comprometido trabajo, comunicando nuestros sentimientos compartidos y pensamientos más profundos, desde que los impactantes eventos de Orlando se hicieron públicos.

Aún durante estos días oscuros, no solo los laicos sino también varios de nuestros líderes Católicos han hecho pública su solidaridad y empatía en formas que nunca antes habíamos visto. Las palabras de muchos Obispos, como Robert McElroy de San diego “Estoy con ustedes”, nos da ánimo para continuar trabajando. Tenemos esperanza de que, a través de la educación, dialogo ecuménico y compartiendo nuestras experiencias vitales, haremos un cambio en la sociedad y la Iglesia, donde aún es frecuente encontrar personas que manifiestan y justifican sus actitudes homofóbicas. El Papa Francisco llamó, en su reciente Exhortación Apostólica “Amoris Laetitia”, a ser más acogedores e inclusivos y a rechazar todo tipo de expresiones de violencia hacía personas LGBTQI. Dicha declaración del Papa Francisco refuerza que la paz no es solo la ausencia de violencia, sino también la presencia de justicia. Nuestro compromiso y voluntad, como GNRC, es recorrer ese camino en Orlando y donde sea que las personas LGBTQI sufren de violencia, discriminación y victimización, sea en las Américas, Europa, Asia, Oceanía o África.

Este la Paz y el Amor de Dios constantemente presente y visible en todos nosotros.

Comité Central de la Red Global de Catolicos Arcoiris (GNRC).

Firma tu apoyo y aprobación a esta carta en change.org .

You can find the English version of this letter here.

Vous trouverez une version Française de cette lettre ici.

È possibile trovare la versione in lengua Italiana di questa lettera qui.

Sitio Web: www.rainbowcatholics.org      Correo:    rainbowcatholicsassembly@gmail.com

Twiter:      GNRCatholics                          Facebook: GlobalNetworkofRainbowCatholics

La Red Global de Católicos Arcoíris (GNRC) se conforma de organizaciones e individuos que trabajan por el cuidado pastoral y justicia para personas lesbianas, gays, bisexuales, transexuales, queer, e intersexuales (LGBTQI) y sus familias. La red trabaja por la inclusión, dignidad e igualdad de esta comunidad en la Iglesia Católica Romana y la sociedad en general. La GNRC fue fundada en octubre del 2015 en la conferencia de Roma, “Los Caminos del Amor”, con 80 participantes de 30 países. A la fecha la GNRC representa a 25 grupos de católicos LGTBQI, sus familias y amigos de todos los continentes.

THE FIRST LGBT CATHOLIC INTERNATIONAL MEETING

ROME: THE FIRST LGBT CATHOLIC INTERNATIONAL MEETING TO BE HELD FROM 1ST– 4TH OCTOBER   AHEAD OF THE SYNOD ON THE FAMILY

Harmony, dignity and equality in the Catholic Church and Society

(Rome 28/09/2015) –  The first Assembly of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics – (GNRC) will take place in Rome, 1st-4th October 2015 – on the eve of the opening of the 2015 Synod on the Family.

GNRC logo

The inaugural Assembly of the GNRC brings together representatives from more than thirty countries. They will meet for the first time to inaugurate a global network of organizations and individual Catholics involved in pastoral care and in the search of social justice, inclusion and dignity for LGBT people and their families, within the Catholic Church and society in general. The four-day Assembly, with a full program of meetings, will work to initiate joint projects, mutual support and exchange of best practices, while seeking dialogue and serene engagement with the whole Catholic community and institutions.

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) is an international network of organisations and people involved in the pastoral care of, and search for justice for, LGBT people and their families. By means of joint projects, support and interchange, the Network strives for the inclusion, dignity and equality of LGBT people, their parents and their families, within the Catholic Church and wider society.

Representing, as they do, a great variety of sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions, cultures, ethnicities and backgrounds, the members of GNRC are united in a common Catholic Faith which leads them to pray and work so that LGBT people may be guaranteed full and equal inclusion in all sectors of the Catholic Church, and the protection, by both civil and ecclesiastical law, of their human dignity, rights and equality of treatment may be upheld.

Rooted in the tradition of Catholic Social Justice teaching, the GNRC proposes the equal and intrinsic value of all people, independent of sexual orientation, relationship status or gender identity. GNRC members long for a Catholic Church in which ALL the people of God – LGBT and heterosexual people – can live, pray and offer their own service together in harmony.

ways of loveSaturday 3rd October 2015 from 15.00 until 19.00 – at the Centro Pellegrini “Santa Teresa Couderc”, Via Vincenzo Ambrosio 9/11 – will take place the conference entitled “WAYS OF LOVE: Snapshots of Catholic Encounter with LGBT people and their families, sponsored by European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups.

Participants: Mary McAleese, ex president of the Republic of Ireland, interviewed by journalist Robert Mickens, director of Global Pulse, Raúl Vera OP, a Catholic Bishop from Mexico, Sr. Jeannine Gramick (USA), Pedro Labrín SJ (Chile), Martin Pendergast (UK), Pino Piva SJ (Italy), Rungrote Tangsurakit (Thailand), Sr. Anna Maria Vitagliani (Italy) and a priest who works in Africa whose anonymity has been requested by his superior. Conference spokespersons: Andrea Rubera and Martin Pendergast.

Secretariat

Rainbow Catholics Assembly

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