Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-12-17
Download Issue
  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Sponsor
Knight at the Movies: The Hobbit; The Babadook; film notes Knight at the Movies: The Hobbit; The Babadook; film notes
Here at the end of The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies, ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times    Download PDF Issue

Local Gay Catholics react to Pope Francis
by Chuck Colbert, Keen News Service
2013-04-03

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


"Cautiously optimistic" and "toned-down rhetoric" are some overarching observations as local LGBT Catholics take measure of the new pontiff, Pope Francis, the former cardinal archbishop of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Jorge Mario Bergoglio.

And while local gay Catholics are well-aware of the Vatican's historical hard line orthodoxy against homosexuality, they see hope already in the new pope's gracious and open style with people and his downplaying, if not eschewing the papacy's grandeur and monarchical trappings.

"I am pleased to see Pope Francis begin his service by demonstrating the simplicity for which he is know in Buenos Aires. And I hope he will be able to change the culture in the Vatican, and throughout the church, with this call to live with simplicity and service," said Martin Grochala of Dignity Chicago.

"I am not surprised that he has been adamantly opposed to gay marriage—describing it as though he does not know the LGBT community, though I understand he has had much dialogue with the community in Buenos Aires. He is still a bishop whose views have been shaped by the church's narrow and willfully ignorant understanding of human sexuality," added Grochala, who is chair of DignityUSA's national convention, scheduled for this summer in Minneapolis. "It is our duty as LGBT Catholics to make ourselves known to our Pope, to be open to sharing the truth of our lives with him, and lead him to greater understanding of how our faith has shaped our lives."

Indeed, the media has widely reported the new pope's view on same-sex marriage and adoption by gay couples. During his tenure as cardinal archbishop, Bergoglio opposed both, calling them works of the devil. And yet, despite Catholic hierarchical opposition, Argentina passed legislation in 2010 opening marriage to gay and lesbian couples. It was the first country in Latin America to do so.

The media has also spotlighted the new pope's pastoral sensitivity to persons living with HIV. For example, in 2001 Bergoglio visited a hospice where he washed the feet of AIDS patients.

And a recent New York Times piece reported that during the Argentine same-sex marriage battle, Bergoglio, in behind-the-scenes discussions, favored a compromise focusing on civil unions.

Before becoming pope, it was Benedict XVI—then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, as the church's chief doctrinal enforcer—who issued pastoral care letter on homosexual persons that used unkind language of "objective disorder" to describe the "homosexual inclination" and "intrinsic evil" to explain "homosexual acts."

Marilyn O'Leary of Dignity Chicago said she was heartened by Francis' concern for the poor and downtrodden. "Now that he is pope perhaps his kind and generous nature might allow him to feel some of the same affection for LGBT people," she said.

"If the hate rhetoric is stopped or at least lessened, we would belong to a much more Christ-like church," O'Leary added. "I am willing to give Francis some time to come into his own and welcome all people of faith into the Church. In the meantime, we will pray for him."

In a similar vein, Dignity Chicago's president Chris Pett said reactions a recent chapter Mass "were fairly hopeful, believing that with Francis' background, affinity with the poor and simple lifestyle, there is the possibility he will be open to dialogue and potentially be a spiritual and administrative reformer of the church."

Pett added, "I'm a bit more guarded but cautiously optimistic."

Asked to elaborate, he said, "The challenge for Francis is there seems to be this interesting contradiction between someone who is very committed to the poor and social justice and yet does not make the connection between that and the injustice of telling LGBT people they are morally disordered and intrinsically evil, which is exclusionary and harmful. It has caused deep harm to many in our community, causing many to leave the church."

"At least to this point, that disconnect has not been acknowledged by Francis, but we hope there will be opportunities for dialogue," said Pett.

"As an LGBT Hispanic, I am glad that we have a pope who comes from Latin America and is more in touch with the needs of this side of the world," said Ramon Rodriguez of Dignity Chicago. "Although in the past he has echoed the official teachings on homosexuality given by the Vatican, as the pope he has an opportunity to make a new start and, at the very least, change the rhetoric to be more inclusive and less poisonous. I sincerely hope he goes beyond just stopping the hateful remarks against LGBTs and actually transforms the Catholic Church's view on sexual morality to focus on justice and understanding."

Leadership of the Rainbow Sash Movement offered an assessment of the new pope. "The significance of this papal election, we believe foreshadows a change not in doctrine, but in tone," said Chicago-based Joe Murray, executive director.

"We expect the tone of the anti-LGBT rhetoric to be toned down," he explained, adding, "We also expect to see a commitment to give women a larger role in the Church."

Murray also said he expected "a thorough house-cleaning of the Roman Curia," which is the governing body of the Vatican.

"LGBT Catholics should welcome this new pope as an opportunity for new beginnings, and be open to any gestures of bridge building on his part," said Murray. "LGBT Catholics should not be guided by fear or anger."

"The Rainbow Sash Movement is hopeful and cautious this new occupant of Saint Peter's chair will bring back sanity to a Church that promotes hate over love," said Murray.

Attempts to reach Chicago's Archdiocesan Gay and Lesbian Outreach ministry for comments were unsuccessful.

©Copyright 2013. Chuck Colbert. All rights reserved.


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC Hozier takes us to church 2014-12-17
World: London mayoral candidate; UKIP situation; Jamaican pastor 2014-12-17
Agenda for Synod on Family previewed, DignityUSA responds 2014-12-10
LETTER Take action 2014-12-10
Evanston Unitarian church hosts panel on youth homelessness 2014-12-07
Evanston church, Crys Matthews to benefit youth 2014-12-05
Church music director files discrimination complaint 2014-12-04
Lighthouse Church hosts benefit concert 2014-12-04
VIEWS Remembering Thanksgiving 2014-11-24
aChurch4Me observes Transgender Day of Remembrance 2014-11-21
Ministry fundraiser to benefit homeless LGBT youth 2014-11-17
VIEWS Surely, Jesus wants us to aim for church, not cult 2014-11-11
Rev. James Cleveland is explained with a queer perspective 2014-11-11
Area church reaffirms commitment to LGBT leadership 2014-11-04
Decalogue Society of Lawyers hosts hate-crimes forum 2014-11-04
Man attacked in apparent hate crime in Lakeview 2014-11-02
LETTERS Elections; Center on Halsted; the church 2014-10-29
Bishops' report excludes LGBT-positive language 2014-10-18
LETTERS Arch(bishop) enemy?, Church times 2014-10-15
Vatican takes different stance regarding gays 2014-10-14
NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC Sinead O'Connor takes us to 'Church' 2014-10-14
Gay Catholic ministry responds to Vatican's message of welcome 2014-10-13
LGBTs welcome new archbishop 2014-09-24
Reports: Spokane bishop to replace George 2014-09-20
Man fired from church job meets Cardinal George 2014-09-17
Ugandan documentary screens at church 2014-09-16
George meets with Inverness gay man after firing 2014-09-10
Man fired from church job prepares to meet with George 2014-09-05
VIEWS Celibacy is the new ex-gay ministry 2014-09-03
9/11 tribute to Fr. Judge at Old St. Patrick's Church 2014-09-02
Petition seeks gay church employee's reinstatement 2014-08-23
Out Chicago rabbi heads to Israel for advanced studying 2014-08-20
THEATER REVIEW Churchill 2014-08-13
Inverness church fires employee after he announces engagement 2014-08-01
Cardinal criticizes Brewster Pride message 2014-07-03
'Churchill' at Greenhouse 2014-07-02
Temple Sholom hosts Pride event and honors 2014-06-27
Or Chadash wins Breakthrough Fund grant 2014-06-27
Rabbi speaks on transgender issues at Skokie congregation 2014-06-27
Holy Trinity holding mass marriage service 2014-06-25





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Myles Brady: Howard Brown's first transgender outreach coordinator
 
National: LGBT bill in Congress; trans soldiers; blood ban
 
Entertainment: 'Broadway Bares' news; Grindr awards; Robyn's new CD
 
Many GLBT homicides connected to sex work, rallies Dec. 17
 
LoBianco now at Chicago House
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now
Sponsor


Sponsor

  News Index   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds     AIDS @ 32       Marriage
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.