Catholics have good reason to hope. While many Catholics, including Pope Benedict XVI, do not condone homosexual activity, there are signs of changing traditions and evolving viewpoints within the Church. As a Notre Dame graduate, I have witnessed firsthand how institutional change within the Church is possible, even in the midst of controversy.
While Notre Dame does not support independent gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) organizations, there has been marked progress in the way of advancing awareness of homosexual issues. This year, Notre Dame hosted a Queer Film Festival and a Gay Awareness week – setting off a storm of national media attention and controversy. In response, I enlisted the support of Divinity Washington parishioners, calling upon the solidarity of our Catholic congregation to fight for justice and against inequality.
Today, the battle for gay rights has enormous momentum, and the changes at Notre Dame hold great significance for Catholics around the globe. Traditions must evolve in order for meaning to be preserved. As Pope Benedict XVI outlines his goals for the Church, he will undoubtedly face a new generation of gay advocates and allies. This generation is stronger, smarter, and more organized than ever before, and there is evidence of this growing influence around our country – from South Bend, Indiana to Connecticut.
I call upon my Catholic friends to stay hopeful and resolute. Our efforts are opening the eyes of others, showing them that it is compatible to be gay and Catholic. Working together, we can make our Church more open, just, and humane.
-Ken Seifert, graduate student
Kudos to the several GW students who successfully petitioned District Market to stop selling eggs from hens kept in “battery” cages (“District Market stops selling caged bird eggs,” April 18, p. 2). Experts agree that battery cages deprive birds of their most basic needs-crammed inside tiny wire cages for their entire lives, egg-laying hens cannot even spread their wings – let alone preen, roost, or build nests. As a former animal control officer in D.C., I am certain that similar treatment of dogs or cats would be considered cruelty to animals.
To learn more about the suffering endured by millions of hens confined to battery cages in the U.S., or to see photos and videos documenting the miserable conditions for animals on today’s factory farms, please visit COK.net.
-Erica Meier, Director, Compassion Over Killing