The LGBT “Pilgrimage of Mercy” will take place on Sunday October 2, 2016 to celebrate and recognize LGBT faithful Catholics in the United States.
The pilgrimage is sponsored by the following organizations:
GALA ND/SMC – Lead Sponsor
GALA-ND/SMC is the Gay and Lesbian Alumni/ae of the University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s College. Our national group numbers over 900 members, including gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered (GLBT) alumni/ae, faculty and staff from the schools, as well as their families, friends, and allies.
The purpose of GALA-ND/SMC is to: promote solidarity and friendship among GLBT graduates, former students, and friends of the University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s College; provide financial and moral support to GLBT student groups at Notre Dame and St. Mary’s College which support GALA’s mission; sponsor, direct, and participate in activities of any nature including charitable, educational, spiritual, and athletic, which further the interests of GLBT alumni/ae and friends of the two schools; facilitate, through education, better communication with University and College officials; and increase the visibility of GLBT alumni/ae at Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s, and worldwide. More information can be found at: www.galandsmc.org/.
The Fairness Campaign – Main Co-Sponsor
Founded in 1991, the Fairness Campaign, located in Kentucky, is a broad-based community effort dedicated to equal rights. Its primary goal is comprehensive civil rights legislation prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The Fairness Campaign accomplishes its goals through public education and advocacy, political activity, community building and reciprocal alliances with others in the social justice community.
For the past five years, the group has sponsored a Pilgrimage in Louisville Kentucky under the name “Catholics for Fairness” in support of LGBT rights. The walk ends at the Cathedral of the Assumption Sunday where the group attends mass. Speaking at the walk in 2015 were Greg Bourke and Michael De Leon, married Louisville Catholics who have fought for LGBT equality in the Boy Scouts and before the U.S. Supreme Court, State Representative Jim Wayne, Father Joseph Fowler of the Archdiocese of Louisville, Sister Mary Swain of the Loretto Community, and other allied Catholics for Fairness. More information can be found at: www.fairness.org/.
Believe Out Loud – Co-Sponsor
Believe Out Loud is an online network that empowers Christians to work for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. We elevate the people and places where Christianity and LGBT justice intersect.
We believe that each of us is made in God’s image – beautiful and beloved, unique and whole. We work for the day when all are treated as equals in our families, churches and communities. More information can be found at: www.believeoutloud.com/.
Dignity USA & Dignity/New York – Co-Sponsors
DignityUSA works for respect and justice for people of all sexual orientations, genders, and gender identities — especially gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender persons — in the Catholic Church and the world through education, advocacy, and support. More information can be found at: www.dignityusa.org/.
Established in 1972, Dignity New York, a chapter member of Dignity USA, is a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to encourage gay men, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender (GLBT) persons and their friends to express their sexuality in a manner consonant with Christ’s teachings. Dignity helps people to become more active members of the Roman Catholic Church and society, and works through education and legal reforms for justice and the social acceptance of gay men, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender persons. More information can be found at: www.dignityny.org/.
Equality Federation – Co-Sponsor
Equality Federation is the movement builder and strategic partner to state-based organizations advocating for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) people. We believe change is possible in every community. That’s why we empower local leaders to build a strong movement for equality that secures critical grassroots wins at every level.
Since 1997, we have worked throughout the country to build the leaders of today and tomorrow, strengthen state-based LGBTQ organizations, and make critical progress on the issues that matter most. More information can be found at: www.equalityfederation.org/.
Equally Blessed – Co-Sponsor
Collectively and individually, Call To Action, DignityUSA, Fortunate Families, and New Ways Ministry are devoted to informing, supporting and giving voice to the growing majority within the Catholic Church in the United States that favors equality under law for LGBT people.
We seek to educate, to inspire and to prompt Catholics to take action in the church and in the wider culture on behalf of LGBT people, their families and friends. Our work as organizations and as a collective encompasses the pastoral, the political and the theological. More information can be found at: www.equally-blessed.org/.
Fortunate Families – Co-Sponsor
We are Catholic parents of LGBT sons and daughters sharing with others on the same journey our message of hope and unconditional love for our families and fostering respect, friendship and justice for our children.
We promote and facilitate personal, meaningful, and respectful conversation, especially within our parishes and with our pastors and bishops. We stress the significance of our personal stories as a source of grace within our families and as a witness for justice in our civic and faith communities.
We hold fast to the truth that our children are, in the words of the United States bishops, “child[ren] of God, gifted and called for a purpose in God’s design.” (Always our Children 1997-1998). More information can be found at: www.fortunatefamilies.com/.
Freedom for All Americans – Co-Sponsor
Freedom for All Americans is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBT people nationwide. Our work brings together Republicans and Democrats, businesses large and small, people of faith, and allies from all walks of life to make the case for comprehensive non-discrimination protections that ensure everyone is treated fairly and equally.
With the ultimate goal of securing federal statutory protections for LGBT Americans, Freedom for All Americans works at the federal, state, and local level to advance measures and laws protecting from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression – without allowing overly broad and harmful religious exemptions that will encourage employers, business owners or others to choose to disregard those protections. More information can be found at: www.freedomforallamericans.org/.
GLAAD – Co-Sponsor
GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBT acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. More information can be found at: www.glaad.org/.
The Human Rights Campaign represents a force of more than 1.5 million members and supporters nationwide. As the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer civil rights organization, HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community. More information can be found at: www.hrc.org/.
New Ways Ministry – Co-Sponsor
New Ways Ministry is a gay-positive ministry of advocacy and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Catholics, and reconciliation within the larger Christian and civil communities.
Through research, publication and education about homosexuality, we foster dialogue among groups and individuals, identify and combat personal and structural homophobia, work for changes in attitudes and promote the acceptance of LGBT people as full and equal members of church and society.
New Ways Ministry is a member of Equally Blessed, a coalition of faithful Catholics who support full equality for LGBT people both in the Church and in civil society. More information can be found at: www.newwaysministry.org/.
Out @ St Paul (OSP) is the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Ministry of our parish at St. Paul the Apostle in New York City, which seeks to engage our Catholic
faith through service to our community, social activities and the exploration of Catholic spirituality. More information can be found at: www.outatstpaul.org/.