1) Today, May 17th, is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. GayStarNews reports that, for the first time, Catholic churches in Italy will be hosting prayer services to commemorate the day.
2) Peace Advocacy Network, a Philadelphia non-profit, will be protesting a “sports camp” for gay man, to be held on the grounds of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s seminary, St. Charles Borromeo, on May 23rd. The sports program is sponsored by Courage, a group which promotes celibacy for lesbian and gay people, and which sometimes promotes the discredited “reparative therapy” to change a person’s orientation. According to Metro.us, the sports camp “claims to help gay men repair their ‘sports wound’ and become ‘manlier’ – in so many words, performing ‘conversion therapy’ to ‘reform’ their homosexuality.”
3) The Vatican is asking San Juan, Puerto Rico’s Archbishop Roberto Octavio González Nieves, to step down from his position, but Gonzalez Nieves is refusing to leave. According to Latin Times, the Vatican’s action against the archbishop is prompted by “allegations of protecting pedophile priests, abusing his power, promoting Puerto Rican independence, and supporting a law that would allow gay couples living together, hereditary rights.”
4) In Zambia, a Catholic priest who is running for the nation’s presidency, has stated that he will not arrest gay and lesbian people, and that he supports marriage equality. According to The Times of Zambia, “Father [Frank] Bwalya said he would respect homosexuals, claiming this was in line with the Catholic Church which prescribed respect for every individual.”
5) The Vatican has confirmed that Scotland’s Cardinal Keith O’Brien, who resigned earlier this year when it was revealed that he had sexually molested several seminarians and priests, would be leaving the British country for “spiritual renewal,” according to The Daily Mail. Earlier, O’Brien had refused to leave the country though many Catholic leaders felt his presence was divisive. O’Brien had been an outspoken critic of LGBT equality and justice in the UK.
6) QueeringTheChurch.com reports on a set of “gay mysteries” of the Rosary, developed by Stephen Lovatt. The mysteries are: the healing of the Centurion’s boy, the answering of the Rich Young Ruler, the raising from the dead of Lazarus, the Last Supper, and the Kiss of Judas.
–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry