This is fun. Mark Lambert, referring to the transfer of the old Soho Masses congregation from Warwick Street to Farm Street, writes:
However, it became very obvious, very quickly, that Cardinal Nichols had no intention of stopping the Masses, he simply moved the venue. What about dealing with the Pastoral issue? Surely he did that? Well, the Masses are followed by a “social” organised by LGBT Catholics Westminster Pastoral Council. Their lack of fidelity to Christ and His Church is written all over their Facebook Page here. These are people who self-identify as LGBT, who think the Church is wrong in what it teaches, and who want to change the Church to suit their own sexual predilection.
The Catholic Herald cover the story of the Mass here. Of course, the Cardinal’s spokesman is very careful to articulate that the Mass was not specifically “for gay Catholics”, but for all Farm Street parishioners.
Regardless, the most revealing comments are made by the people the Mass was aimed at. Terence Weldon runs the blog Queering the Church, the title of which disturbs me greatly in itself and speaks to its agenda.
This passage, the third in the English bishops’ suggested texts for reflection on marriage as part of the consultation process for the Rome Family Synod 2015, is the familiar story of the Annunciation, Mary’s subsequent visit to Elizabeth, and her song of praise, the “Magnificat”. (The text may be read here, at Bible Gateway)
As preparation for the 2015 Synod on Marriage and Family, the Bishops of England and Wales have invited their people to make submissions on their experience of the institution. In their invitation, “The Call, the Journey and the Mission”, they pose six questions to be answered:
What are your joys and hopes of marriage and family life today?
What are your struggles and fears of marriage and family life today?
How can we better understand marriage as a vocation?
How does your marriage enrich you?
How does your family life enrich those around you?
In what way, through the abiding presence of God, is your family “salt of the earth and light to the world,” and a place of and for handing on our faith?
We could simply go directly to the questionnaire, and dash off some replies. However, they ask that we first reflect on a selection of scripture passages (the links in the headings go to the sections of the bishops’ website, where they suggest specific questions for reflection. The links following the references go to the actual texts at Bible Gateway, NRSV Catholic edition):
An early highlight of Pope Francis’ papacy, was the publication of his Apostolic Exhortation, “Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel)“. For LGBT people especially, and also for many others, the Bible is not often seen as a source of joy, but more usually as the primary source for religious excuses for discrimination and oppression. This is however a serious misperception of the biblical message, and of the Gospels in particular, so I was delighted and inspired by Francis’ text.
I had previously written myself on a similar theme, the joy of scripture, especially for LGBT Catholics and other Christians, and devoted an entire set of back pages to the subject at Queering the Church (also expanded on at “A Queer Ear for the Rainbow Scriptures). Here follows the opening text of the main page. (Explore further in the “Bible” pages in the drop – down menu across the top of the page).
The Sunday after Christmas is traditionally celebrated as the Feast of the Holy Family – an occasion which all too often is used in homilies as an excuse to commend the modern nuclear family – thereby leaving the substantial proportion of Catholics who are single, divorced, married but childless, gay, lesbian, trans or otherwise queer distinctly excluded. How are LGBT people of faith to respond to this, how can we truly participate in a great feast which so leaves us excluded?
I have reflected on this twice before. The first time, in “Christ’s Queer Family”, I noted that the Biblical Holy Family was not, as it is usually presented, an example of the “traditional” family beloved of the Christian right, but in fact has much more in common with queer families.
In the Gospel for the third Sunday of Easter, we read once again the familiar story of the Journey to Emmaus. What is less familiar, but of major importance for LGBT Christians, is the sequel – the journey FROM Emmaus, back to Jerusalem.
While in Brazil for World Youth Day last year, Pope Francis also spoke to the bishops of Brazil, about the “Miracle of Aperecida”, about appreciation for the path taken by the Cburch in Brazil – and about the “The icon of Emmaus as a key for interpreting the present and the future”.
Introducing the subject, Francis noted the context of the disciples who were leaving Jerusalem in a state of dejection: Adsense code, 460 x 60