Virtual Catholic LGBTQ Pride Event: “We, Though Many, Are One Body”
So, how’s everybody doing?
Wherever you are in the world, these have been some extraordinary months as so much of normal life has come to a stand still due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Religious services, cultural and sporting events, personal celebrations–all things which bring people together and create identity–have been canceled or moved online, like so much of the rest of our social lives.
As June approaches, many LGBTQ Pride events will also become virtual. In many places around the world, June is the month when people gather to affirm the goodness of their sexual and gender identities, and to share that goodness with others. Since the early days of Pride, five decades ago, Catholics have been a part of those celebrations, and in recent years, the Catholic presence has been growing stronger and stronger.
Catholic LGBTQ Pride Zoom Event
To help Catholics celebrate LGBTQ Pride in this challenging time, New Ways Ministry will host a virtual prayer service and gathering entitled, “We, Though Many, Are One Body.” The title is taken from 1 Corinthians 10:17, which is one of the liturgical readings for the day of the event, the feast of Corpus Christi. The Zoom call will be Sunday, June 14, 2020, 3:00 p.m., Eastern U.S. Time. The event will be interactive, including prayer, songs, and reports from participants. New Ways Ministry Co-Founder Sister Jeannine Gramick will be leading the opening prayer. Please register in advance by using the form at the end of this blog post.
A Week of Activities and Celebration for Catholic LGBTQ Pride
The Zoom event will be preceded by a week of Catholic LGBTQ Pride activities which people will be invited to perform on their own or with friends and family. Each day will have a different suggested activity. People can choose to do one, two or more, or even all seven! Those who choose to perform these activities will be given a chance during the Zoom call to share their experiences.
Sunday, June 7th, Trinity Sunday: Offer a prayer for more openness to diversity in the church. Make this prayer at your Sunday liturgy, with friends and family, or on your own.
Monday, June 8th: Find a way to talk about your interest in Catholic LGBTQ issues with someone who doesn’t know about this area of your life.
Tuesday, June 9th: Send an email to your pastor, pastoral staff, parish council with some suggestions for how to develop a stronger welcome for LGBTQ people in your parish. You can brainstorm your own ideas or choose from a list of suggestions.
Wednesday, June 10th: Gather a group of friends on a teleconference or video call to participate in one of New Ways Ministry’s “Journeys” scriptural reflection series. Or use one of the installments of the series for your own individual reflection.
Thursday, June 11th: Call, email, or write to an LGBTQ person or ally who you admire and let them know how they have positively affected you. Consider making a donation to an LGBTQ organization you support.
Friday, June 12th: Write to your bishop or another diocesan official and discuss the need for more positive messages and actions concerning LGBTQ issues coming from the local hierarchy. You can find contact information for your bishop and diocese from New Ways Ministry’s database.
Saturday, June 13th: Call, email, or write to a Catholic pastoral minister or lay leader to thank them for whatever action or message they may have offered which has been positive toward LGBTQ people.
Register to Receive a Link
If you would like to participate in this Catholic LGBTQ Pride event, please complete the registration form available here. On the Friday before the event, we will email you the Zoom link to connect to the gathering.
We hope this event will be an opportunity for Catholics across the U.S. and around the globe to gather for a Pride event this year. We hope you will be affirmed and strengthened for the coming year, which will be particularly challenging for our entire planet.
—Francis DeBernardo and Robert Shine, New Ways Ministry, May 15, 2020
“Virtual Pride in June” what a great idea. In Baltimore the Pride Week is being moved to August [maybe}. As you know, the Faith Communities of Baltimore with Pride has grown to 46 members and have had between 250 and 300 “Pride Walkers” representing 30+ faith Communities. Using Zoom has been a life-saver. I will be forwarding your Virtual Pride invitation to several LGBTQ+ groups. Let me know how we can help
I am feeling hopeful about this idea of a virtual week of pride events with a Catholic slant to them. I had never heard of such an event before but maybe that’s because most of the Pride celebrations were not faith-based but more secular. Make this thing work out and made everybody’s benefit in someway shape or form. And you know what else? I hope the church will pay attention to the lived experiences of the LGBTQ people within it. For instance, I have seen many heterosexual couples in many different parishes with arms around each other or kissing at the sign of peace or being Eucharistic minister’s together. But you don’t see LGBTQ people doing that because the church does not appreciate the lived experiences of LGBTQ people. I hope that will change.