Meet with LGBT Catholics during your upcoming U.S. visit
My name is Nicholas Coppola and I need your help.
Pope Francis, whom many call the most progressive Pope of all time, is coming to the U.S. in late September. Like millions of others, my husband David and I are eagerly awaiting his visit.
We want the Pope to lead by example and meet with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Catholics and their families during his visit. We strongly believe this meeting would promote great healing and reconciliation in our Church and society.
For almost a decade, I've been a parishioner at St. Anthony's Roman Catholic Church in Oceanside, New York -- serving as a religious education instructor, lector, altar server, visitation minister for home-bound members, as well as member of the Consolation Ministry. But after David and I got married, the bishop took away of all of my roles and responsibilities, just for marrying the man I love.
This rejection hurt us terribly, and sent a dangerous message to LGBT people of faith everywhere.
In the U.S. and around the world, LGBT people experience alienation from the Church, higher rates of poverty and violence, and discrimination in employment, housing, educational opportunities, and access to health care.
The Pope can help address this crisis by meeting with LGBT Catholic families like mine and hearing our stories of perseverance, hope, and struggle.
This meeting would be an incredible first step towards healing together – and towards bringing us greater justice in the U.S. and across the globe.
Will you join me in asking the Pope to stand up for our families by extending a hand of respect and dignity to our communities?
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