Hi my name is Ashley Schrode. I began attending Dignity/Detroit in 2012. Since then, I have taken a more active part in DignityUSA as well. I began participating in the Young Adult Caucus and have met some truly inspiring people of faith. Most recently I have joined the Development Committee to assist in continuing to cultivate ways to fund the work DignityUSA does.
DignityUSA is a part of my life, but not only because I am a social worker and the social justice values of Dignity align very closely with my own. But, also because when I met my, now fiancée, almost five years ago I was uncertain whether I could remain in a loving same sex relationship and continue to be a "good Catholic." When we connected with Dignity, both on a local and national level, it was confirmed almost instantly that not only are we accepted, but celebrated within this faith-based community. The support and acceptance I felt at that time, and continue to feel, has allowed my faith and personal relationship with God to grow stronger than I ever thought possible.
As a young adult still building my career, the funds are not always accessible to contribute financially. However, I do have time and energy! That is in part how I support this mission. It is important to remember we all have something meaningful to give. I want to suggest how you can become involved with time, money, or resources within DignityUSA.
First, June is Pride Month which brings many opportunities to contribute, march, raise your voice, and be in community with one another. Pride month may also provide a platform to talk more openly to friends, family members, or supporters of the LGBTQ community about DignityUSA and your own commitment to bringing about change in our society and in our church.
Also, our Young Adult Caucus (DYAC) is sponsoring its biennial Leadership Conference, scheduled for July 29-31, 2016 in Chicago. This conference brings together an energized group of young adults from across the country to be in community and develop leadership skills. This is also a wonderful opportunity for individuals without a home chapter to meet fellow members and non-members.
Finally, please consider making a gift today to DignityUSA. Or when you receive information about our Pride Appeal or the DYAC Leadership Conference, please consider making a gift at that time to help us continue to be the voice and advocates for LGBTQ Catholics.
Thank you for the opportunity to share my thoughts with the larger DignityUSA community!