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Highlights of DignityUSA's History: 1981

The following history is based on the commemorative booklet entitled DignityUSA at 25: A Chronology, 1969-1994 compiled by former DignityUSA President Pat Roche. Copies are available from the Dignity national office and were also printed in the Dignity Journal 27:2-3 (Autumn 1995). Highlights from 1995-Present compiled by former Dignity Vice President Pat McArron.
  • The February edition of the national newsletter has a special insert on "Women in Dignity." It recaps contributions made by women to Dignity at the national, regional and chapter levels. It also includes a variety of personal stories and reflections.
  • Meeting in March in Lobbock, TX the National Board of Directors unanimously defines Chapters and Chapters-in-Formation as "groupings of no fewer than ten persons in a locale."
  • Nine candidates representing three slates for "International" President, Secretary and Treasurer are listed in the June-July edition of the national newsletter.
  • On August 1, Dignity announces the publication of Brian McNaught’s book: A Disturbed Peace — Selected Writings of an Irish Catholic Homosexual. A copy of the book is later sent to every bishop in the country, paid for by a generous donation from a Dignity/Chicago chaplain.
  • The Fall issue of the national newsletter includes reports from the national officers. President Frank Scheuren notes four major accomplishments in summing up his first term:
    • The establishment of the office in Washington and our 501(3)(c) status.
    • The re-establishment of some type of relationship between the executive officers, office, and the chapters.
    • The very strong foundation and visibility with the NCCB.
    • The establishment of strong ties and the starting of very strong coalitions with all types of groups.
  • The Fall 1981 issue of the national newsletter has the first ever mention of the impending AIDS epidemic in an article entitled: "Gay Disease."
  • Dignity announces a September publishing date for its revised and updated Theological Pastoral Resources Booklet.
  • John Boswell’s Christianity. Social Tolerance and Homosexuality receives top prize at the 1981 American Book Awards for History.