Global Network of Rainbow Catholics. Invitation to the foundational meeting

We are very happy to announce and invite you to the First Assembly of theGlobal Network of Rainbow Catholics, the foundational meeting of the new network. Under the title “LGBT Voices to the Synod“, this meeting will take place from 1−4 October 2015 in Rome, on the opening weekend of the second Family Synod.
Part of the program is a public conference “Ways of Love – Snapshots of Catholic Encounter with LGBT People and their Families”. This conference will present LGBT pastoral activities from all over the world that are already going on.



Members Global Network of Rainbow Catholics

European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups
ACGIL Associació Cristiana de Gais i Lesbianes de Catalunya (Spain)
Dette Resources Foundation (Zambia)
DignityUSA (USA)
Drachma (Drachma LGBTI and Drachma Parents Group) (Malta)
Ichthys christian@s lgtbh de Sevilla (Spain)
LGBT Catholics Westminster Pastoral Council (UK)
New Ways Ministry (USA)
Nuova Proposta (Italy)
Ökumenische Arbeitsgruppe Homosexuelle und Kirche (Germany)
Pastoral de la Diversidad Sexual (Chile)
Wiara i Tęcza (Poland)


LGBT Voices to the Synod. First Assembly of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics

This assembly has the following goals:

– to initiate a global exchange about the life situations of LGBT Catholics
– to explore the gifts and needs of the participants for LGBT pastoral
– to inspire new activities and co-operation among the participants
– to discuss and develop the mission, objectives and values of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (see below)
– to elect a steering committee
– to celebrate our faith in prayer, singing and Eucharist

The program will also include:

– the launch of a new book “And God saw that it all was excellent” with autobiographic stories from LGBT Catholics from Europe with the editors Sandy Taylor and Hazel Barnes.
– a guided tour through the city of Rome.
– the public conference “Ways of Love – Snapshots of Catholic Encounter with LGBT People” (Rome, October 3rd, 2015)


Venue. The Assembly will take place in the Centro Pellegrini, a guesthouse in the city of Rome. Centro Pellegrini “Santa Teresa Couderc”, Via Vincenzo Ambrosio 9/11 – 00136 Roma- Italy, tel : +39 06 35401142 fax : +39 06 92911822,

Time: The Assembly begins Thursday, 1 October at 5pm and ends on Sunday, 4 October at 1pm (after lunch). Please, take care that your arrival at the Centro Pellegrini must be before 7 pm.

Assembly Costs: Triple Room: 120€; Double Room: 150€; Single Room: 200€ (only few available)

These costs are for the entire meeting. They include lodging, breakfast, 1 main meal per day, coffee break, tourist tax, free WiFi. Costs per night can be divided by three.

Registration and Application for Scholarships: Registration is open until 15 July.

Please, respond to all questions of the questionnaire that you can find here: . By 1 August, you will receive a response as to whether or not your application has been accepted. If it has, you will also receive detailed payment instructions at that time.
Participants (especially from the Global South) can apply for scholarships on the same registration form, if necessary. Scholarship notifications will be sent by 1 August with further information.
If you have questions about or problems with the registration form, please, contact Francis DeBernardo (New Ways Ministry):

Public Conference. Ways of Love Snapshots of Catholic Encounter with LGBT People and their Families

The conference will present examples from all over the world of LGBT pastoral care and inclusion already realized in the Catholic Church.

Venue: Rome, Italy, Centro Pellegrini “Santa Teresa Couderc”, Via Vincenzo Ambrosio 9/11 – 00136 Roma- Italy, tel : +39 06 35401142 fax : +39 06 92911822,

Time: October 3rd, 2015, from 3 to 7 pm

Free Entrance with possibility to reserve a seat



Moderator: Gabriella Caramore (author and host or the Italian radio program “Human beings and prophets”)

14.30 Arrival

15.00 Welcoming and introduction

15.15 Interview with Mary MacAleese (Ireland) (by Robert Mickens)

15.45 Catholic LGBT Pastoral Projects – Snapshots from Chile, USA, UK, Kenya, Italy, Thailand


  • Pedro Labrín SJ (Chile)
  • Jeannine Gramick (USA)
  • Martin Pendergast (UK)
  • Terry Charlton SJ (Kenya)
  • Rungrote Tangsurakit (Thailand)
  • Pino Piva SJ and Sr. Anna Maria Vitagliani (Italy)

17.15 Break

17.45 Keynote speech: Bishop Raul Vera (Mexico) (to be confirmed)

18.30 Final Panel: Hopes and expectations from the Family Synod

19.00 Closing


CONCEPT PAPER for the Global Network of Rainbow Catholics

This is to be considered as a working document to be further developed at the Assembly in Rome. Your response to the questions in the registration form would help us to improve it.


The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics (GNRC) is a global network of organisations and advocates who focus on pastoral care and justice for LGBT people and their families. Through common projects, support, and exchange the Network works for inclusion, dignity, and equality for LGBT people, their parents and families in the Catholic Church and society.



Representing a wide variety of sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions, cultures, ethnicities, and backgrounds, GNRC members are united by a shared Catholic faith which calls us to pray and work to ensure that LGBT people have full and equal membership in all areas of the Catholic Church, and that their human dignity and rights to respect and equal treatment will be protected by civil and church laws.

Rooted in Catholic social justice tradition, we respect the intrinsic equal value of all people, regardless of sexual orientation, relationship status, or gender identity. We believe that Catholic Church leaders, structures, and institutions should promote policies and practices which include the full participation of LGBT people at all levels, including access to pastoral care, sacramental participation, employment and decision-making, and ministerial leadership. We envision a Catholic Church where all God’s people – LGBT and heterosexual – can live, worship, and serve together harmoniously.

The Catholic faith also calls us to challenge all structures which treat LGBT people in a discriminatory manner. Civil and church law should protect LGBT rights and equality, not deny them. Any law or practice which oppresses, restricts, punishes, or harms LGBT people is contrary to the Gospel. We work both to eradicate prejudicial attitudes and practices which harm LGBT people and, through education and awareness-training, to enable those with homophobic and transphobic views to be aware that such views and behaviours have no place within the Catholic Church.

We work to educate Catholic leadership, institutions, and audiences about the spiritual gifts that LGBT people bring to the Church, and how our community is blessed by their presence and experience.

The Global Network of Rainbow Catholics will dialogue with theologians and Church leaders to facilitate pastoral practice, theological reflection and doctrinal development.

While the experiences, struggles, and opportunities of GNRC members may differ greatly, we stand in solidarity and prayer with one another, and we pledge our support to one another to help bring about a more just and equal church and world.

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