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News Archive (2013)

Reflections on Plenary Address: Claiming Our Catholic Social Justice Traditions, Maureen Fielder, SL and James Nickoloff

By James Nickolof, Associate Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies, College of the Holy Cross 

I was pleased to see that both Maureen Fiedler and the Dignity Convention itself began with the theme of gratitude for the gifts of many persons and for God's love, because

I have come to believe that any sound theology and any sound ethics must be rooted in thanksgiving. The Church as a whole seems to be (slowly) moving beyond the discourse of obedience and exhortation to one which begins with gratitude. I take this as an encouraging sign.

Pope's Comments Signal New Direction for Catholic Church

LGBT Catholics Welcome Pastoral Tone and Substance


September 19, 2013, Boston, MA. DignityUSA welcomes the Pope’s comments in his recent interview printed in America magazine. “We find much to be hopeful about, particularly in the Pope’s firm desire that the Church be a ’home for all people,’ and his belief that God looks on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people with love rather than condemnation,” said DignityUSA Executive Director Marianne Duddy-Burke.


LGBT Catholics Support Pope's Call for Day of Prayer for Peace

Dignity Communities Urged to Echo this Prayer during Weekend Gatherings

Boston, MA. September 4, 2013. DignityUSA and its member communities across this nation deeply grieve the horror experienced among the Syrian people because of the use of chemical weapons. We deplore the violence the civil war in Syria has unleashed, and we join Pope Francis in his call for peace through prayer and fasting on Saturday, September 7th. His words tremble with passion: “[W]e want a peaceful world, we want to be men and women of peace, and we want in our society, torn apart by divisions and conflict, that peace break out! War never again! Never again war!”

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Pope Francis: “Who Am I to Judge?” What does this mean for Dignity?

Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director

If I had any doubt about the power of the Papal pulpit, it disappeared in the days following Pope Francis’ post-World Youth Day onboard press conference in which he addressed a reporter’s question on a “gay lobby” in the Vatican. There was truly global focus on the Pope’s responses, which included, “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?" and a statement that gay people should not be marginalized. China, Saudi Arabia, and Russia were among the many, many places that DignityUSA’s reaction to this statement was quoted!

Finding Hope at World Youth Day

By Lauren Carpenter

If I had to pick one word to summarize my World Youth Day experience, it would be hope. I expected that going to World Youth Day would be going straight into the lion’s den because most of the attendees would be conservative Catholic youth who would either ignore us or argue with us. And indeed there were plenty of people who took the long way around to avoid us as we passed out prayer cards, or who “agreed to disagree” after long conversations. What I was not expecting were the many, many positive responses we got. People would see our banner and seek us out to say things like, “thank you for being here,” or “you are so brave,” or my personal favorite, “The church needs you; keep doing what you’re doing.” 

Our Return: The Story that Stuck with Me

By Sara Kelley

After I returned to the US following our trip to World Youth Day, many of my friends and family had such positive things to say to me. Members of my church and other progressive Catholic friends were so excited to talk to me about my experience, and share how they felt while following along with our journey online. In fact, I received 100% positive responses from friends and family.

Dignity/Honolulu Has an Active Summer 2013

By Gene Corpuz

The Dignity/Honolulu chapter has been busy this summer, in addition to their weekly liturgies and monthly video nights. Gene Corpuz, Tim Earhart, and Alan Campo attended the DignityUSA Convention in Minneapolis from July 4 -7. Joining them was Michael Liendecker who is a dual Honolulu and Philadelphia chapter member. Michael helped carry the Honolulu banner with Tim during the Opening Ceremonies Parade of Banners. They enjoyed the plenary sessions and workshops and had a chance to network with other DignityUSA members.

The Celebration of the Life of Jim Bussen

By Mike Hogan, Dignity/Chicago Member

On a beautiful summer day, family and friends of Jim Bussen gathered at Ebenezer Lutheran Church in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood to honor and celebrate the life and achievements of Jim, a former national president of DignityUSA and activist in the LGBT community in Chicago. Jim was a prophet, an agitator, and a fearless champion of LGBT Catholics and their rightful position as beloved children of God.