Mission – The LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Transgender) Initiative, an issue team of the MSJC, responds to the Church’s call to be welcoming and compassionate by offering effective pastoral care and spiritual support for LGBT Catholics and their families. We foster dialogue, education and understanding among the diverse communities and institutions affiliated with the Marianist family.Our goal is to fully welcome our Marianist GLBT members into all aspects of our communities.
Who We Are and What We Do
The Marianist Charism
As one lay Marianist once said: “What is unique about the Marianists is the spirit of family, that I am always welcome; that I am part of the community; that my presence and my input are valued; and that I am invited to help shape the future of the Marianists.” The LGBT Issue Team wants to provide opportunities for all Marianist communities, with their goals of justice and hospitality in mind, to continue to strive to become places where all members feel as this person does. We want to foster a community where persons with different sexual orientations can dialogue honestly, listening to one another’s opinions. Our desire is to promote a community where all can be truthful with one another without fearing negative responses and where members of the LGBT community can feel comfortable self-identifying. Our hope is that the Marianist family be a prophetic leader in achieving this goal within the larger Church family.
We, as Marianists, are committed to supporting one another in the challenges of daily living and in working for the coming of the reign of justice where the oppressed go free. It has become clear that there are LGBT members of the Marianist family, as well as the broader Church community, that do not feel free to be themselves; persons who have a deep spirituality but feel alienated from their communities. “We are committed to ongoing dialogue and collaboration, remembering that all of us are bearers of the charism, of the Marianist vision and dream.” (Marianists’ Commitment Prayer). It is not just we as a community who can help transform the lives of our LGBT brothers and sisters, but our lives together can be enriched by intentionally welcoming others who bring additional gifts, talents and backgrounds.
Mary said at Cana: “Do whatever He (Jesus) tells you.” How does Jesus tell us what to do today in respect to our LGBT brothers and sisters? Both through the official teaching of the Church and the working of the Holy Spirit in the lives of our community members He is telling us to “Love one another as I have loved you.” One of the essential tests of social justice within any Christian community is its abiding spirit of inclusion. The building of a family demands that we reach beyond ourselves in order to accept and learn from all the members of our community.
Catholic Social Teaching
“Always Our Children“, a pastoral message from the Bishops’ Committee on Marriage and Family to parents of homosexual children and suggestions for pastoral ministers, states that “every person has an inherent dignity because he or she is created in God’s image.” It goes on to say that “the Christian Community should offer its homosexual sisters and brothers understanding and pastoral care.” Homophobia is prejudice based on the belief that LGBT people are sinful, immoral, sick, and inferior to heterosexuals. It is experienced as feelings of fear, discomfort, dislike, hatred or disgust with homosexuality. We believe that homophobia exists in our Marianist family just as it does in the broader Church and culture. We also believe that positive attitudes come from knowledge. The LGBT Initiative Issue Team is committed to providing our Marianist family with this knowledge and invite you to join us.
For more information – Whether you check out the documents posted on the right side of the screen or follow the links just below them we hope you’ll learn valuable insights and find support regarding coming out, the role of faith and conscience, how to love LGBT children/family/friends, and ideas for making our world more accepting of LGBT persons. Links and resources are meant to provide information for our readers. Their appearance here is not an endorsement of everything for which the organizations/creators stand.
“Pain and Possibility – Being a Catholic Parent of Gay Children” Read Article Here.
Resources and Links
Addressing LGBT Issues with Youth – A Resource for Educators
Always Our Children
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Catholic Association for Gay and Lesbian Ministry
Children of Gays and Lesbians Everywhere (COLAGE)
Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network
Siempre Serán Nuestros Hijos
A great review of Addressing LGBT Issues with Youth