NEW YORK — Advocacy groups on July 28 urged Pope Francis to meet with LGBT Catholics during his trip to the U.S. in September.
GLAAD President Sarah Kate Ellis and Dignity USA Executive Director Marianne Duddy-Burke signed the letter to the pontiff the Human Rights Campaign, the Latino GLBT History Project and other organizations endorsed. Francis DeBernardo, executive director of New Ways Ministry in Mt. Rainier, Md., is among those who also back the request.
“Many LGBT people and family members have experienced a resurgence of hope for full acceptance in our church as a result of your words and reports of personal meetings with LGBT people,” reads the letter. “We see your visit to the U.S. as an opportunity for you to hear from us how central our faith is to our lives, and to work together towards creating a church where all families know that we are truly loved and welcomed.”
Francis is scheduled to arrive in D.C. on Sept. 22.
The Argentine-born pontiff is scheduled to meet with President Obama, address Congress and canonize Junipero Serra at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception while in the nation’s capital. Francis is slated to travel to New York and Philadelphia for the World Meeting of Families before returning to Rome on Sept. 27.