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News Archive (2013)

A Hopeful Advent

By Marianne Duddy-Burke, DignityUSA Executive Director 

As our Church begins its new year with the approach of Advent, we stand at that twilight moment, reflecting on what has occurred and dreaming of what may lie before us. The year 2012 has been one of the most momentous in recent Catholic history. We saw the resignation of one Pope, and have experienced the first few months of a Papacy that seems to signal significant new directions for Church governance. Here in the U.S., we’ve seen some of the strongest embrace of LGBT justice issues ever among Catholics, and a rising number of Church workers coming forward after they were fired for who they are, or whom they love. Our Dignity family has lost some of our most beloved leaders, and seen the emerging passion of the rising generation of talent.

A Prayerful Response

By John Freml, DignityUSA member

Cold temperatures and rain did not stop a group of intrepid Catholic marriage equality supporters from gathering outside the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield, Illinois, on November 20, for a peaceful vigil in opposition to diocesan bishop Thomas Paprocki's "Prayers of Supplication and Exorcism in Reparation for the Sin of Same-sex Marriage." The bishop held the service to coincide with Governor Pat Quinn’s signing of the Illinois marriage equality bill into law. At the height of the vigil, approximately twenty people could be heard singing a hymn of openness and affirmation as observers of the exorcism exited the cathedral.

Have Your Voice Heard

By Marianne Duddy-Burke, DignityUSA Executive Director

DignityUSA and 14 other progressive Catholic organizations have joined forces to develop a way for Catholics to speak out on important issues that will be considered during the Extraordinary Synod on the Family in October 2014. The Vatican has asked Catholics to provide input on issues such as same-sex marriage and the use of contraception. While bishops in many countries have made the survey available to their flocks, most U.S. bishops have not done so. The survey we’ve developed follows the Vatican questions, but the wording has been changed to make it more accessible in the U.S..

Remembering Ken Garber

By M.A. Ladd and Peggy Burns, Dignity/Boston members 

Ken and Marcia Garver​During the week of Trans Remembrance, the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) presented their “Ally Advocacy Award.” This award recognizes the vital, non-professional advocacy work of our community’s cherished allies: our friends, families, spouses, and colleagues who go above and beyond in their support for transgender rights. This year’s recipient was Ken Garber.

Gay Catholics tell Cardinal Dolan to Stop the Culture Wars

Boston, MA, December 2, 2013.

During Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s Thanksgiving weekend appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press, the Archbishop of New York claimed that the Catholic Church has been “caricatured” as being anti-gay, and that it has been “out-marketed” on same-sex marriage by “forces like Hollywood and politicians”. He also compared the same-sex marriage debate to Roe v. Wade, noting that the issue continues to be divisive 40 years after the Supreme Court ruling.

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From Fort Lauderdale to Seattle: Dignity Strong

In just the last few weeks, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to be with Dignity members literally from Florida to Washington state.  ... In Fort Lauderdale, we found a community that offers a warm welcome to “Snow Birds,” and that provides tremendous support for people who are homeless and struggling to overcome addictions. The stories they told of lives transformed through their interventions were truly powerful and inspirational. ... Dignity/Seattle takes great pride in the social justice work it has done, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for health care and hospice services through its annual Pride Breakfasts, and providing hundreds of hours of volunteer service at a local soup kitchen.

The “Big Tent” Church

By Jim Smith, DignityUSA Program Manager

The Dignity community in Madison brings fresh air to a beautiful city. From their inception, they have joined with the Episcopalian LGBT group Integrity to worship, serve, and build relationships together. Taking very seriously Vatican II’s clarion call to build bridges between communities of different denomination and faith, Integrity/Dignity Madison didn’t waste time. Through these many years, they have managed to sustain this ecumenical community, and their worship and prayer reflects this wonderfully.

Dignity/Philadelphia News

​Dignity/Philadelphia was presented with one of the OutProud Community Group awards during Outfest on Sunday, October 13 in recognition of more than 40 years of service to the LGBT community.

Outfest is held annually in Philadelphia to coincide with and celebrate National Coming Out Day. It is organized by Philly Pride Presents.