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Lots to Celebrate in Washington DC at the DignityUSA Convention July 1-4, 2011

The DignityUSA Convention 2011 in Washington DC is shaping up to be a fabulous 4th of July weekend of celebration and substance.

There is a lot to celebrate. We’ll be in the nation’s capital on the eve of one of the truly spectacular 4th of July fireworks displays. What’s more, we’ll be in one of the growing number of jurisdictions in the United States where gay and lesbian couples can be legally married (more about that below).

From one of the most celebratory passages of the New Testament comes the convention’s overall theme: “Love Hopes All Things.” Among the topics on the program will be:

  • “Our Place as Change Agents” — how we can help a healing Church become a Christ-like community that empowers all its members
  • “One House, Many Mansions” — delving into the many blessings of the diversity among our Dignity family
  • “Are You Listening?” — an intergenerational panel
  • a discussion with political leaders about what is next on the public policy agenda for LGBT Catholics.

In addition, convention attendees will hear from canonical and civil legal experts on the latest advances and practical considerations regarding same-sex marriage. A social highlight of the weekend will be a grand reception — “My Big Fat Gay Wedding Reception” — for everyone, whether married, partnered, engaged, or single.

The convention planning committee is working on an opportunity for delegates to take advantage of Washington DC’s recently enacted same-sex marriage law. Because of a legal requirement to be in the city for three days before being married, there are some logistical arrangements to be made. Thus, the committee would like to know in advance about anyone who would like to be married during or around the time of the convention. If you are in that category, please send an e-mail to one of the convention co-chairs, Mark Clark (mark4four@yahoo.com) or Tom Bower (tom1545@verizon.net) and one of them will be in touch about what you need to do.

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