Only two days left to 2015, so let’s take stock of the year that is passing. All week, Bondings 2.0 readers have been voting for what they considered the ten best and ten worst news events of the Catholic LGBT world that occurred over the last 12 months. Below are the results of the voting for your choices for the worst events. The ranking is based on the polling numbers received by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, U.S., on Tuesday, December 29th.
Tomorrow, we will close out the year with a report on what you voted in as the best events. The event with the most votes is in the number one position, and the others follow in descending order. A simple analysis of the results follows the list
- The firing of LGBT church employees continues.
- Cardinal Robert Sarah compares LGBT advocates to Nazis and says marriage equality has “demonic origins” in remarks at the Synod on the Family.
- Pope Francis fails to address crminalization laws against LGBT people during his visit to Africa in November.
- A married gay man in Louisiana is denied communion at his mother’s funeral. After a news story about the incident contained a link to the Archdiocese of New Orleans’ positive webpage on gay ministry, the information is taken down from the web.
- Pope Francis endorses Slovakian and Slovenian proposals to ban same-sex marriage.
- Vatican Secretary of State calls Ireland’s enactment of marriage equality “a defeat for humanity.
- U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke compares committed lesbian and gay couples to murderers.
- Cardinal in Dominican Republic, who once used an anti-gay slur, made repeated homophobic remarks against U.S. Ambassador James Brewster.
- Pope Francis coins the term “ideological colonization” and applies it to new forms of marriage.
- TIE: i) Pope Francis likens “gender theory” to nuclear arms. ii) Despite recommendations from Pope Francis and many bishops, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops votes to retain work against marriage equality as a top priority.
Here’s some simple analysis of the results. It seems that what gets people angriest are when high-ranking church officials–particularly Pope Francis–make negative comments about LGBT people. Of the 11 top choices listed above, seven of them have to do with offensive statements made by top prelates around the globe.
But, with the top choice being the firing of LGBT church workers, Bondings 2.0 readers show that they believe actions are much harsher than words.
Interestingly, with the exception of the first item, all the other choices for worst news events feature a church official in a top leadership position. Perhaps, in a way, this has a silver lining which is something we’ve been aware of for many years now: Catholic lay people are overwhelmingly supportive of LGBT people. Perhaps in the new year, more bishops will continue to follow their example.
Do you notice any other trends or lessons in these results? Offer your thoughts in the “Comments” section of this post.
–Francis DeBernardo, New Ways Ministry