Fortunate Families Detroit Vows to Serve LGBTQ+ People Despite Archbishop

WHO WE ARE NOW

Fortunate Families Detroit is a Catholic ministry that supports our LGBTQ+ community and their families by sharing our personal stories and by promoting equality and inclusion among all people. We have done this work for many years in the Archdiocese of Detroit.

In a letter dated March 14, 2020, Most Reverend Gerard W. Battersby (acting as delegate of Archbishop Allen Vigneron), wrote that our organization was “forbidden” to meet in any parish church, chapel, or institution of the Archdiocese of Detroit. The bishop further stated that our organization “has no approval to meet anywhere at all within the boundaries of the Archdiocese of Detroit.”

As baptized Christians we are certainly part of the Church, and we will continue to meet with Catholic LGBTQ+ persons and families. We will celebrate God’s acceptance of all our kin in all our variations, just as we are created. We will gather, support one another, and share our stories.

The people in Fortunate Families Detroit love and respect the Catholic Church. We are deeply troubled, however, by the approach taken by some of our Church leadership to our LGBTQ+ community. As people of faith, we cannot remain silent when damaging labels such as “intrinsically disordered” and “objectively disordered” (and the teachings and behaviors that result from use of this language) are promoted. This destructive language persists in the Detroit Archdiocesan literature in firm opposition to the long-standing consensus of scientific research and clinical literature, which asserts that LGBTQ+ individuals represent normal, healthy aspects of human sexuality and human bonding. The hurtful language wounds us because we know that we are, and have always been, one before our Creator.

The litany of resulting harm to LGBTQ+ people includes the termination of beloved teachers and church employees, spiritual abandonment, the breakup of families trying to follow Church teaching, internalized shame, blatant homophobia and transphobia, discrimination and oppression. These forces have impacted the mortality rate of the LGBTQ+ community with higher incidence of premature death due to violence and suicide. The institutional Church has brought on itself the scandal of injustice. 

Fortunate Families Detroit welcomes the day when our LGBTQ+ family members are fully accepted by the entire Church, even as we know they are accepted by God. We pray with confidence that with acceptance will come acknowledgement and support of all legal marriages, of committed and loving family units, of transgender and nonbinary people, and of workplace equality for LGBTQ+ people.

We’re Still Here!  Contact us at www.fortunatefamiliesdetroit.com/contact

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