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Standing up for LGBT people

James Martin SJ, renowned American author and consultant to the Vatican’s Secretariat for Communications, gave a workshop entitled ‘Showing welcome and respect in our parishes for LGBT people and their families’ at the World Meeting of Families 2018 Pastoral Congress in the RDS, Dublin, on 23 August 2018. In this podcast interview with Pat Coyle of Irish Jesuit Communications, he shared many personal stories of LGBT exclusion by priests and religious and encouraged the faithful to “stand up” and fight against this type of injustice.

At the packed event in the RDS, he recounted experiences of deep pain among LGBT people as well as examples of parishes where great work was being done regarding LGBT inclusivity. He offered concrete suggestions regarding bringing about change and reform in parishes so that LGBT people and their families could feel welcome and supported.

He also drew on his recently published book, Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity, which calls for reconciliation between the Church’s leadership and LGBT community and for more compassionate dialogue on this issue. He indicated that standing up for LGBT people can be put forward as an example of tackling injustice for Catholics around the world.