DignityUSA, the nation's largest organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Catholics, as well as families, friends, and allies, expresses condolences to the family of Senator Edward Kennedy, and honors the late Senator as a Catholic voice for equality and justice. The group noted his work for racial and gender equality, living wages, immigration reform, people with physical and mental disabilities and many other issues.
Address at DignityUSA Membership Meeting
July 3, 2009
Marianne Duddy-Burke, Executive Director
It is my proud duty to give you, DignityUSA’s members the “state of the organization” report as we mark our 40th Anniversary.
(Keynote Speech by Mary Hunt at the Dignity Convention, San Francisco, July 3, 2009)
As a member of DignityUSA, let me begin by offering thanks to Marianne Duddy-Burke for marvelous leadership. You and your family are models of the goodness and the generativity that comes with love. You show us what faithful and fabulous look like!
My great grandparents immigrated to this country from Ireland and from Sweden. I’ve been particularly thinking of the ones from Sweden. It wasn’t too long after they settled in Minnesota that they decided to set out for a new promised land: Southern California.
If you went to DignityUSA's 2009 Convention in San Francisco, we want to hear from you.
I had planned to devote this reflection to an unabashed celebration of DignityUSA’s many accomplishments over our 40-year history. Just as I opened a file to begin writing, my phone rang. The caller was a 50-something woman from a small city in the Northeast, who told me she has been part of Courage (an organization promoting chastity as the only option for Catholic lesbian and gay people) for years.
by John J. McNeill, (Lethe Press; ISBN: 978-1-59021-042-0; $20.00)
Reviewed by Jeff Stone, Dignity/New York
To many of us in DignityUSA, John McNeill is a familiar and beloved figure. Yet because he is so well-known to us, it is possible to lose sight of the vast scope of the achievements and gifts of this prophet in our own land. In 1970, John published the first theological articles defending homosexuality from a Catholic perspective, which became the basis for Dignity’s original Statement of Position and Purpose. In 1972, he cofounded Dignity/New York. In 1976, he published the groundbreaking book The Church and the Homosexual, which brought his subject into the international spotlight for the first time. Over the next two decades, John followed with Taking a Chance on God; Freedom, Glorious Freedom and his autobiography, Both Feet Firmly Planted in Midair.
Let me tell you about the Parc55 Hotel — site of our 2009 convention! I just spent a weekend there for our April Board meeting. I took Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) from the San Francisco Airport to the Powell Street Station, San Francisco …about a 30-minute ride. BART was a pleasure to ride. It reminded me of Washington, DC’s METRO. When you come out of the Powell Street Station, the Parc 55 Hotel is looming above you! The Hotel has just been renovated from top to bottom. The hotel room was spacious, although storage is scarce.
Posed and compiled by Leo N. Egashira, Publications Committee Chair
Fr. Geoffrey Farrow, who was fired from his Fresno, CA parish after preaching against California Proposition 8 last October, has agreed to deliver the homily during the Eucharistic liturgy at our DignityUSA Convention 2009. He will also be participating in a newly-added pre-convention forum on Marriage Equality, which will be held on Thursday, July 2, 2009.
A scholarship took me from my native Denver to the nation’s capital to start college. I will never forget my first August day in Washington, D.C. It was 98 degrees with 97% humidity. I had never experienced heat like that. I had spent the previous 18 years of my life living in a white,working class suburb of semi-arid Denver, Colorado. “Hot” there seemed downright comfortable compared to the sultry hot of D.C. I landed at National Airport after nightfall. I remember the sights from the taxi. Long blocks of houses all attached to each other. I had never seen that.