Note: I use several terms in this article: LGBTQ and same-sex attracted. The former is for when I refer to the secular community by their own self-defined name and the latter is when I am referring to specifically Catholic situations.
How should a Catholic parish address the issues raised during Pride month in their locale?
Most respond by ignoring it or condemning it, both are great mistakes.
First, understand in the secular world it is Pride month; we Catholics focus on June as the month of the Sacred Heart.
The Pride movement began in earnest after the Stonewall Riots in New York when police raided The Stonewall Inn — a gay bar off Christopher Street in Manhattan — and the patrons fought back in 1970. The following Sunday patrons of the bar organized a march for their rights as homosexual citizens of this country. With about 1000 marchers, the Gay Pride movement came out. Today the bar is a national historic landmark maintained by the US National Park Service.
Homosexuality in all its forms has an unknown etiology. People feel attraction to those of the same sex. The feelings that most have when encountering an attractive member of the opposite sex and the feelings when encountering members of their own sex are reversed.
Pride does not refer to the vice of being prideful but the problem of being filled with shame due to feelings over which people have no control.
So Pride in this case means one will not feel shame for the feelings they have. Feelings are nothing more than feelings. The movement also means that no one has the right to deny anyone basic rights. The Church makes it clear we must treat all with dignity.
There is great confusion between the LGBTQ and the Christian communities because of certain passages in the Bible that would seem to condemn homosexuality in all forms. What the Bible forbids is not feelings but actions on a heterosexual and homosexual spectrum.
My experience is that the two communities speak across each other. When the LGBTQ community talks about their life issues, they are speaking about the orientation that may or may not lead to action. When the Christian…