View Full Version : Hi everyone. My name is Michael.
11-25-2005, 11:17 AM
Hi everyone. My name is Michael, and I am 19 years old. I just recently joined the forum. I am a practicing gay Catholic, coming from a very traditional Catholic family. I am still closeted with my parents and older brother, however I just recently came out to my older sister, who is quite understanding. I am obviously a progressive catholic seeking change. I feel the current teachings of the Catholic church are very oppressive and have been psychologically and spiritually damaged as a result of them. However, I still have hope that the Catholic church, as well as all of the other Christian denominations, will learn to accept God's gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender children with the compassion and acceptance that Jesus teaches. I attended an all male catholic High school called Saint Xavier in my hometown of Louisville, Ky, where I was actually received with respect. I found a good amount of spiritual healing from some of the religion teachers there who were also progressive catholics seeking change. I am currently a freshman at Murray State University in Murray, Ky as a Creative Writing major where I have gotten involved with the Newman House (Catholic Campus Ministries), which is okay. It's very moderate, and I am open with a few of its members who seem to be accepting. I am also currently in a relationship, which has given me immense happiness. In my future I plan on getting involved with progressive catholic groups on the grassroots level, most likely DignityUSA. I joined Soulforce so that I could maybe connect with other people who share my views, and I am pleased to have found this community.
11-25-2005, 01:17 PM
Hi Michael and welcome to Soulforce. I look forward to reading your posts.
I grew up in Paducah, Kentucky, which is right up the road from Murray. I now live in Lexington.
11-25-2005, 01:36 PM
Hi Michael, welcome to the forums!
04-22-2006, 09:49 PM
You're not the only one in the closet. But I get the impression that you are handling it well. Don't get frustrated with what is happening, you will handle this as you need to as this unfolds. I'm 40 year's older than you, and I'm still dealing with issues. Be proud that you have handled so much already.
The Catholic church has many, many things that it is doing, and has done wrong. But there is a culture, history and central love inside there; sometimes they just have trouble seeing it or letting it out. We need married priests, women priests, acceptance of gltb members (with full acceptance and membership). While I have many things I want changed, I also hold out hope for acceptance.
If you would like to talk more on this subject, please contact me. Until then good luck in your courses, and other aspects of your life.
04-23-2006, 09:46 AM
You might like this site, if you haven't seen it already:
Catholic Action Network for Social Justice (http://www.catholicactionnetwork.org/HF/HolyFamilies-PRAY.html)
04-23-2006, 04:12 PM
Hi Michael- welcome to SF. I've been taking writing classes too, mostly non-fiction and memoir, and have enjoyed learning the craft immensely. I'm also a musican (singer) and see many similarities between the two fields. In a word: both are about voice. And from what you write, you seem to have found yours already. I hope to hear more from you here.
Glad to hear you have found joy in a relationship! Blessings.
04-28-2006, 12:13 PM
The number of posted replies made me wonder what kind of unique things you had to say. So your not so unique, but seem to be an interesting and kind person with a goal to fight social injustice in the Catholic Church. And from within no less. A very brave thing to do. I myself am wrestling with staying with the catholic church because it promotes such intolerance. I am straight, but no longer feel comfortable worsipping in such an atmosphere. I discussed my concerns with my priest, and he couldn't understand why it would be an issue for me if I was not gay or lesbian, or if no family members were. The whole point just went right over his head! Anyway, I'm glad I read your message. Good luck to you, you're in my prayers.
04-28-2006, 12:24 PM
YES! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! You've taken all my thoughts about the Catholic Church and summarized its description and the changes that need to be made in one (or two?) shot paragraphs. For those of us still with the Catholic church and longing to stay, but finding it increasingly difficult, you touched on so much of what would make the Catholic Church a welco:agree: ming accepting place to be. To bad your not the pope!
04-28-2006, 01:27 PM
I have great respect for Roman Catholics who are working for change from within the Church. There are, indeed, many who are calling for justice and equality for all, particularly for LGBT Catholics.
But, after trying for a very long time myself, I realized that change would never come in my lifetime. The current Pontiff was chosen from a College of Cardinals that is filled with ultra-conservative prelates. I fear that it will be a very long time before there is an opportunity for even the smallest change in the Church's positions.
Thankfully, there are many welcoming congregations within the Church of Rome, and many priests and Religious who speak out without regard for their careers. In the end, however, all are still under the authority of a hierarchy which has shown little compassion for the struggles of LGBT people.
For the rest of us who long to remain Catholic, yet want to be fully inclusive, there are Independent Catholic communities. In churches like ours, ordination is open to both women and men, clergy are permitted to marry, and LGBT members are welcomed and embraced. All of the Sacraments, including marriage, are offered without regard to gender or orientation.
In liturgy and parish life, we seem exactly like the Church of Rome. The only difference is that all of our members are equal and no one is ever excluded.
Blessings to all,
04-28-2006, 06:28 PM
Kathleen - you hit the nail on the head. It seems a tenet of our culture that you won't care about gay rights if you or a family member are not gay. As if you shouldn't? The craziness there is that we all should, and this belief that it's a "fringe" or "special interest" issue is the biggest thing holding us back right now.
If I weren't bi, if I didn't have gay friends, I could still not in good conscience fail to speak out against the. . . ridiculosity. . .of anti-gay prejudice, especially as codified in the legal/constitutional systems. Or anywhere.
Sometimes it seems that being married to a man gives my activism more credibility in the eyes of some, who will give more weight to a statement by someone they assume to be straight than someone they assume to be gay. We need to get past that problem, obviously, but until we do, straight allies are especially valuable. Absolutely necessary.
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