Criminalizing LGBTQ People

More than 70 countries criminalize LGBTQ people, including a dozen countries with the death penalty.

Catholic teaching is clear that upholding human dignity requires an end to discrimination and stigmatization. Catholics worldwide must join efforts to end these harsh criminalization laws and the attitudes which foster them.

#PopeSpeakOut Campaign

The #PopeSpeakOut campaign asks Pope Francis to use responsibly his moral authority and public platform by condemning laws that criminalize being LGBT. Add your voice to our appeal as Catholics by contacting the pope!


Bondings 2.0 – A blog with the latest Catholic LGBT news, opinion, and spirituality. See the categories “Criminalization” and “#PopeSpeakOut”

Church Teaching on Non-Discrimination and Civil Rights

Catholic Responses to Anti-LGBT Criminalization: A Chronology

Quotes from Catholics Opposing Anti-LGBT Criminalization

Intimate Conviction Conference – In October 2017, The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and Anglicans for Decriminalization hosted a two-day conference examining the role of the Church in anti-sodomy laws across the Commonwealth. The conference, Intimate Conviction, was a groundbreaking gathering that brought together activists, church officials, and politicians from around the world for an inspiring discussion.

To mark the one-year anniversary of this event, an edited volume containing many of the presentations from this conference is available. Free hard copies of Image result for intimate conviction conference jamaicathis volume – Intimate Conviction: Examining the Church and Anti-Sodomy Laws Across the Commonwealth  – can be requested by emailing [email protected]

At the conference, Francis DeBernardo, executive director of New Ways Ministry, presented the talk – Building Bridges: The Roman Catholic Church and the LGBT Community The entire volume or talk (page 85) can be read or downloaded here.

We hope this will be a valuable resource for anyone looking for tools to understand how these laws came to be and what role the Church can still play.

God Loves Uganda – A 2014 documentary about the attempts by some Christians in United States to impose anti-LGBT attitudes and laws on African nations.

A Prayer to End the Criminalization of LGBTQI People

Helpful Links

76 Crimes – A blog focusing on anti-LGBT laws that exist in 76+ countries and the effort to repeal them. Includes a full listing of such countries and is available in French.

Global Network of Rainbow Catholics – Coalition of LGBTQI people and organizations working for inclusion, dignity, and equality in the Roman Catholic Church and in society.

LGBT Asylum Support Task Force – Community-based volunteer organization which supports LGBT people seeking asylum or refuge in the United States, and seeks policy change towards this end.

LGBT Freedom and Asylum Network – Group helping LGBT persons who seek safety in the United States.

Sexual Minorities Uganda – Led by Frank Mugisha (see below), this is an umbrella organization advocating for the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Ugandans.

Profile in Courage

Dr. Frank Mugisha, executive director of Sexual Minorities Uganda

Dr. Mugisha advocates for human rights in Uganda, and for his efforts has received many awards including in 2011 the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award and the Rafto Prize. He has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

At New Ways Ministry’s National Symposium in 2017, Mugisha told attendees: “I encourage you to think of any way you can support an LGBT person. Take it personally. Stand up. Speak out.”