LIVING UNITY IN DIVERSITY
ChristiaN Life Community – CLC – MANIFEST
“LIVING UNITY IN DIVERSITY”
The CLC Spain sees the diversity of sexual orientations in her bosom as “a gift from God”
Note: This Manifest was translated from the original text written in Spanish from cvx-es.es
Madrid, December 2nd 2020.
The Community of Christian Life (CLC), which groups 1,100 people in 35 communities throughout Spain, has witnessed in recent years “the presence of LGTB + people in the Church and in the community itself” that, “like the rest of the members of the people of God, they want to fully live their faith, in love and service, but often find added difficulties to do so and even rejection, which generates great personal and family suffering.
As stated in a statement made public this Wednesday, December 2, for CLC it is “a gift from God to be made up of people with diverse sexual orientations” and “this experience of diversity in the Church has made the community grow a deep gratitude and joy ». Aware, likewise, that “every person is, by nature, the daughter of God, created in his image and likeness,” he has committed himself “to accompanying these processes of faith and integration into the ecclesial community” and in raising awareness and internal training.
In our local communities, the presence of LGTB+ people in the Church and in the community itself has been witnessed in recent years. Who, like the rest of the people of God, want to fully live their faith, in love and service, but that many times they find added difficulties to do so and even rejection, which generates great personal and family suffering. From our local communities, various people have committed themselves to support these processes of faith and integration in the ecclesial community.
As Pope Francis recalls in Amoris Laetitita, the Church must make her own “the behavior of the Lord Jesus, who in unlimited love offers himself to all people without exception” and, therefore, there is no room for any “sign of unjust discrimination” towards “people with homosexual tendencies.”
As a result of the experience of suport, and together with this reflection, at the last General Assembly of CLC Spain, held in August 2019 in Pamplona, it was agreed to delve into the subject and make a public manifesto to state that:
- Our community lives as a gift of God to be made up of people with diverse sexual orientations, people in whose families there are LGTB+ members, single, married and divorced people. As members of the Church that they are, they participate in it equally, and far from any stigma. For example, positions of responsibility and representation of the community are open to all of them.
- The discrimination, always unfair, suffered by many people because of their sexual orientation is a call to attention to the Christian community to continue remembering that every person is, by nature, a child of God, created in His image and likeness; and to redouble efforts of recognition, reception and accompaniment.
- Our community is committed to ensuring the awareness and internal training of its members on this issue, as well as incorporating it in the different task areas.
This experience of diversity in the Church has brought deep gratitude and joy to the community.
Complementary Article: Letter from the CLC Executive Council to the CLC Family
Dear friends from the CLC community,
A fraternal greeting from the Executive Council at the beginning of Advent. Time of hope
in a new birth. Preparation time for what is to come.
In the council we have thought that Advent is the propitious time to make present in our Church and society the joy that we live in our community by living in diversity, both sexual as a couple, as families. It has been a long road for our community, but it is only the beginning, like the Advent that we begin.
Memory of the path traveled
In recent years, the membership of our community – of diverse people – in relation to
their gender identity and sexual orientation has been made visible and has been a matter of reflection to local level. Likewise, we have been progressively aware of the presence and situation of people divorced with a partner or remarried in our communities.
Our Family Mission Team has worked since 2017 on specific tools for accompaniment for divorced/separated persons (4 Stations) and LGBT+ persons (currently in phase of design). Likewise, the team promoted internal reflection in the CLC community in Spain and the dissemination of inclusive pastoral lines, presenting the book “Building a Bridge” by the Jesuit American Priest James Martin sj. No less important has been the constructive work on this matter of international networks, especially with CLC in Chile and Malta.
Several local communities have carried out various awareness campaigns about the situation of LGBT+ people, supporting groups of them in their ecclesial membership and have even publicly positioned themselves around the reception of LGTB+ people (single or married), divorced people (with or without a partner) and people married to others of another religion.
For these and other actions, CRISMHOM (Ecumenical Christian LGTB+ association of Madrid) recognized us on June 2018 with its Rainbow award.
During 2018, the CLC community in Spain worked on the possibility of publicly positioning itself as a welcoming and supportive community for LGBTIQ people and their groups (Watch the video from Jorge Urrutia). The national council invited a reflection coordinated by the territorial councils, which resulted in the collection of contributions from some communities, among which the consensus was high. Therefore, we can say that the CLC Spain community:
- The CLC sees this world as a border, whether we are talking about LGBT + people or the families in which these people grow up.
- It perceives the reality of the LGBT+ person as worthy of recognition. And from there comes the joy for their belonging to our community and the desire to walk together in the values of the Gospel.
- The CLC expects an active role of the Church in relation to these people, and therefore feels called and sent to welcome, accompany and recognize this reality in our community and Church.
- It expresses the desire to work in this area, and to do so from within the Church. Regarding the interior of the CLC, the potential is seen that it is, in addition to a specific theme of the family mission, a transversal incorporation to the different lines of mission.
- It confirms the need for well-founded training and internal awareness, especially with first-hand testimonies from its protagonists, in order to be able to listen to and receive different views on these issues, and to work them out within the community.
Today we position ourselves publicly
The CLC Spain Assembly, held in Pamplona in August 2019, proposed and approved a recommendation for the elected executive council in which it is called to publicly state that CLC Spain welcomes, accompanies and integrates LGBT+ people, single or married, and separated and divorced people, with or without a partner.
Today this recommendation comes true with the press release and public position that accompanies this letter, and which this morning was sent to public Media. Today, and in the days that follow, the CLC social networks will be active to show testimonies of life and joy in diversity. Do not miss the opportunity to see them, and to promote them.
A fraternal hug, may the Lord accompany us on this journey.
Carles, Edu, Juanpe, Mirella, Nacho and Seve
CLC Executive Council
“SOMETHING NEW IS BREAKING UP”