It is with heavy hearts and a profound sense of loss that we, the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC), remember Cris Serra, whose life and legacy continue to inspire us. Cris, a former GNRC Board member, psychologist, author, and relentless advocate for justice and inclusion, passed away on October 22, 2023, after a valiant battle with cancer. Her life was a beacon of hope, embodying the values and mission of GNRC in every aspect.

Cris’s contribution to GNRC and the wider community was immeasurable. Her leadership in the Embracing Womyn’s committee and her innovative approach greatly enriched our work, especially in the GNRC Accompaniment Project. Cris’s unique ability to blend professionalism with compassion and empathy set her apart. She was a guiding light, reminding us to always prioritize equity and access in our endeavors, ensuring our programs and materials were inclusive and accessible across diverse languages, cultures, and identities.

While Cris’s physical presence is no longer with us, her spirit endures in the memories shared by those who knew her and in the impact of her work. As we reflect on her life, we are reminded of her laughter, her heartfelt blessings, and her unwavering commitment to living and advocating for justice. Cris’s journey was not just about facing challenges but about transforming them into opportunities for growth, inclusion, and celebration of diversity.

In honoring Cris, we are reminded of the words from the Book of Wisdom, “the souls of the just are in the hands of God.” Cris’s life was a testament to this, living out justice with passion and commitment. As we move forward, let us embrace her vision—working towards radical hospitality, empowering individuals to realize their full potential, and bringing greater glory to the values we hold dear.

As part of our tribute to Cris, we will be sharing eulogies and personal reflections from those who knew her. These testimonials speak volumes about the profound impact Cris had on everyone she interacted with. From her early enthusiasm about the GNRC Assembly in Chicago to her invaluable contributions to the Board, Cris’s story is one of resilience, love, and unyielding dedication to the cause of equality and love.

In the words of Kahlil Gibran, “For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun? And what is it to cease breathing but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?” As we remember Cris, let us carry her spirit in our actions and thoughts, continuing to sow generously as she did, in the pursuit of a world that celebrates and embraces diversity in all its forms.

Cris Serra’s light will forever shine in our lives, guiding us toward a future of inclusivity, compassion, and love. May she rest in peace, and may her legacy continue to inspire generations to come.


Marianne Duddy Burke

Members and leaders of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics from around the globe are mourning the untimely death of Cris Serra, a leader of Diversidade Catolica in Brazil, as well as a GNRC Board member from 2019-2021. Cris passed away 22 October 2023 after a long battle with cancer. Cris was a psychologist, an author, a researcher, a passionate advocate, a beloved friend to many. As a GNRC leader, she kept us focused on equity and access, constantly reminding us to consider how to expand the languages in which we offered our programs and materials, and how we work to ensure access to events across time zones, cultures, resources, age, genders, and identities. She laughed often and offered powerful and heartfelt blessings. She is deeply mourned. We hold her memory as a blessing and an inspiration.  

Christopher Vella


The first time I got to know Cris Serra was just before we organised the Assembly in Chicago. She was very enthusiastic about attending in-person in Chicago and having had a few conversations with her, I was eager to finally meet her in person. Regrettably, she was unable to attend because of her illness. Despite this situation, she did not shy from accepting our invitation to join the Board a year later. During her time on the Board, she enveloped us with her warmth, her love of life, her joy, her hope, her courage and her celebration of diversity. I was struck by her genuine friendliness and her yearning to really get to know each one of us individually and deeply. My conversations with her were warm and heartfelt. It was therefore with sadness that we learnt that she could no longer stay on the Board because of her returning illness. Still, I was always hopeful that we might be able to meet up at least once in-person. That did not come to pass, much to my personal regret. When I learnt about her sad loss, it filled me with grief, and though we shall never meet in person, I know she will be closer to us in spirit. When we met the Pope only just days after her death, we felt her spirit with us. I know she would have been overjoyed to know that the Pope was blessing GNRC and the entire LGBT community. May she rest in peace. Amen.

Ruby Almeida

When Cris applied to come to our Assembly in Chicago, it was a disappointment that she had to cancel due to her illness. But it such a joy that she decided to join the Board. Her presence really brought a sense of the importance of our humanity when she asked that we give focus to our duty of care for each other. She organised a wonderful Board session where we just focused on each other and honoured each other through prayers, poetry and the written word. It was such a powerful space and created a closer bond within the Board.

Cris was very active on the Embracing Womyn’s committee and was mindful of how we should always be at the forefront of all that we did. And it was thanks to her energy and creative thinking that we were able to contribute to the GNRC Accompaniment Project with our video.

Cris I never got to meet you in person, but your personality and charm and passion was so prevalent in all of our many, many online calls. You helped me see and understand things with cleaner and share lens. You showed me how it is possible to be business like and also caring and compassionate at the same time. Your tears were a reminder that it was ok to be vulnerable whilst still being strong. I thank you for all that you were and will continue to be. God bless you dearest Cris.

The Prophet: On Death

by Kahlil Gibran

Then Almitra spoke, saying, We would ask now of Death.

And he said:

You would know the secret of death.
But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life?
The owl whose night-bound eyes are blind unto the day cannot unveil the mystery of light.
If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life.
For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond;
And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.
Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.
Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honour.
Is the shepherd not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king?
Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is it to cease breathing but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.
And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

Dance on dear Cris.

Let the heavens resonate with your beautiful presence and may your light forever shine on in our lives.