The following are some items that may be of interest:
1) A documentary on the German LGBTQ church workers who participated in the #OutInChurch campaign was the top watched program the first quarter of this year for the the outlet which is hosting it, ARD Media. Katholisch.de reported that the film was accessed more than half a million times from January through March of this year. The documentary, titled “How God Created Us,” was released in conjunction with the campaign in which some 125 church workers came out as LGBTQ. The campaign has since released a book, too.
2) Miguel Yañez, SJ, a theologian and organizer of a recent conference on Amoris Laetitia, Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation on the family, spoke to America about how Francis’ document moves beyond a text on a similar theme by Pope John Paul II. Amoris Laetitia is “quite different,” said Yañez because it is less about doctrine and more about “a sense of humanity regarding the new realities of the family—single-parent families, ensembled families, mixed-race families and, ultimately, even ‘rainbow’ families” that tries to see “this changing reality of family in a positive way.” To read the full interview, click here.
3) As the local part of the Synod on Synodality concludes, some dioceses will begin releasing their reports on what listening sessions, surveys, and other forums have yielded. Crux reported on the Archdiocese of Cincinnati’s report, and included this note: less than one percent of the 1,700 participants were LGBTQ. In the report summary, available here, it said responses indicated “the Church is struggling with the LGBTQIA+ issue” and that “participants themselves were split on this matter,” while also calling for greater LGBTQ pastoral sensitivity in a couple sections.
4) The Diocese of Charlotte is appealing a federal ruling that found Charlotte Catholic High School had discriminated against former employee Lonnie Billard, who was fired in 2014 over his same-gender marriage. The appeal will now be led pro bono by the anti-LGBTQ group Becket (formerly the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty), reported The Charlotte Observer. The now-disputed federal ruling in 2021 was hailed as a rare victory for LGBTQ church workers facing discrimination, though as law professor Leslie Griffin wrote in Bondings 2.0 at the time, it was never clear if the win would stand. For more on this case, click here.
—Robert Shine (he/him), New Ways Ministry, May 14, 2022