Here are a few items you might find of interest:
1) Fr. James Boric, rector of Baltimore’s Basilica of the Assumption, the first cathedral built in the United States, posted on the church’s Facebook page that a local library’s “Drag Quen Story Hour” was “evil” and that “we do not need to expose kids to such things.” Boric added that the Eucharistic adoration would be available the same night as the story hour was hosted to “pray for the conversion of all involved.” The Facebook post has since been deleted, reported Baltimore Fishbowl. The library responded indirectly with a social media post that “Everyone is welcome here.”
2) Ruth Hunt, a Catholic lesbian and former head of England’s leading LGBTQ equality group, Stonewall, has joined the House of Lords. Speaking with Politics Home about this career shift, Hunt expressed how her existing expertise and connections will now help her engage the difficulties present with the nation’s laws on LGBTQ rights. She also shared about a new tattoo she received upon leaving Stonewall: it is a quote from Julian of Norwich’s Revelations of Divine Love! To read the full report, click here. Hunt has previously shared movingly about her faith.
3) Wendell Rodricks, an Indian fashion designer who advocated for LGBTQ rights, passed away in February at age 59, reported WION. In particular, Rodricks was central to Bombay Cardinal Oswald Gracias’ blessing of a hotline established by Rodricks to help LGBTQ Catholics become closer to the church. A meeting between Rodricks, the cardinal, and co-chair of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics, Ruby Almeida, later led to the launch of Rainbow Catholics India.
4) Idaho passed two anti-transgender laws in March that ban female transgender students from competing in female sports competitions and ban transgender people from changing their birth records to reflect their gender. The bills were signed into law by the governor on the eve of Transgender Day of Visibility, reported the Idaho Statesman. While LGBTQ advocates said they would file legal action against the discriminatory laws, the Diocese of Boise, headed by Bishop Peter Christensen, expressed gratitude to state officials “for choosing to do the right thing” by passing “family-centered policy [that] will strengthen our state for decades to come.”
5) Catholics advocating for LGBTQ equality were among those who protested Vice President Mike Pence’s visit to a Philadelphia Catholic school earlier this year. Pence, joined by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, visited St. Francis de Sales School to promote programs seen as controversial because they divert public education funding to private schools. But the vice president was met by protestors in one of the city’s most LGBTQ-friendly neighborhoods, including members of the parish to which the school is attached, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
—Robert Shine, New Ways Ministry, May 23, 2020