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Petition to Get Cardinal Dolan To Meet LGBT Youth Gaining Traction—And Just Might Work

How much can one person do to combat institutionalized homophobia? Quite a bit actually: Two weeks ago, Joseph Amodeo (right) resigned his post on the Junior Board of Catholic Charities after New York’s Cardinal Timothy Dolan refused to reach out to needy LGBT youth at the Ali Forney Center.

Since then Amodeo launched a petition on Change.org to urge Cardinal Dolan to meet with LGBT youth. So far, he’s gotten nearly 1,200 signatures—and support from a broad spectrum of Christian leaders, including Father Anthony Ruff, professor of Liturgical Studies at St. John’s Abbey; Francis DeBernardo, Executive Director of New Ways Ministry;  Joan Horgan, Director of Spirituality at the College of St. Rose; former Congressman Jim Kolbe (R-AZ),; Brother Brian Halderman, Minister for Social Justice at St. Mary’s University; and Archbishop Michael J. Champion of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church.

Amodeo hopes to deliver the petition to Cardinal Dolan’s office on May 17, the Feast of the Ascension. It reads, in part:

It’s wrong that 30-40% of homeless youth are LGBT. We’re asking Cardinal Dolan to meet with homeless LGBT youth, hear their stories, and dialogue with them.

A little over eight years ago, I came out as a gay man to my family and friends and continued to practice my faith as a Roman Catholic. I came to witness the overwhelming support that so many people have for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people.

Despite support for LGBT people from so many Catholics today, I resigned from the Executive Committee of the Junior Board of Catholic Charities two weeks ago. My resignation was a result of Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York’s decision to avoid a request to help young people served by the Ali Forney Center, a nonprofit organization that provides emergency care to homeless LGBT youth.

Cardinal Dolan is the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and U.S. media often refer to him as “the American Pope.” That such a well-known Catholic leader would oppose responding to a request to assist youth represents a deviation from Catholic social teaching.

Since my resignation, the support from Catholic people and other people of faith – gay and straight – has been overwhelming.

Do you believe we should embrace our young adults and not turn our backs on them for being who they are?

I do. I believe we need to raise our voices and seek a dialogue with the Cardinal on this and other issues affecting the LGBT community. Those sitting in the pews must send a message that leaders in the pulpits need to hear: we stand in solidarity with LGBT youth.

A high-level source tells Queerty that Dolan is aware of the effort and is considering at least making a statement in support of at-risk LGBT youth.

Who knows, with enough names on the petition he might even meet with the kids. God works in mysterious ways, after all.

By:           Dan Avery
On:           Apr 17, 2012
Tagged: , , , , , , , , ,

  • 14 Comments
    • Darling Nikki
      Darling Nikki

      Cardinal Dolan is a prick. A media-whore who’s angling to be Pope.
      That will never happen.
      During last year’s historic vote that legalized same sex marriage in New York State, he said some vitriolic nonsense that had nothing to do with religion.
      His words:

      “Last time I consulted an atlas, it is clear we are living in New York, in the United States of America – not in China or North Korea. In those countries, government presumes daily to “redefine” rights, relationships, values, and natural law. There, communiqués from the government can dictate the size of families, who lives and who dies, and what the very definition of “family” and “marriage” means.”

      He also views same-sex marriage in the same category as “marrying one’s mommy”.
      One sick individual who takes orders from a prada red-shoe queen,
      Keep him AWAY from any youth.
      Who needs to follow a so-called relic who doesn’t live in the real world.

      Apr 17, 2012 at 2:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • iDavid
      iDavid

      If he drops the silly robes and the faux sky god ill gotten negative gay religious speak, and meets human to human, yes, we just might have something there. That has never been however with the way these kind secure their paycheck. They have zero assets, and to be eliminated at his age due to “seeing the light” is beyond difficult if he actually has to come out of his cave and go out in the real world and work for a living.

      Apr 17, 2012 at 2:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • iDavid
      iDavid

      PS. I don’t advocate meeting w anyone from “the church”. The only logical step is full removal from their emotional satanic grip. You don’t cut deals with the devil. And a lot need cult deprogramming when ties have been cut. Seek monetary aid elsewhere.

      Apr 17, 2012 at 4:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      OK – someone’s got to make the wisecrack, so I might as well before we get something even worse …

      If Joseph Amodeo and Cardinal Dolan both walked into a gay bar (pickup variety), which one do you think would attract a lot of attention? Dolan has a good reason to be angry at gays – “sour grapes”.

      Re No 2 “They have zero assets, and to be eliminated at his age due to “seeing the light” is beyond difficult if he actually has to come out of his cave and go out in the real world and work for a living.”

      Aside from possibly losing retirement benefits, Dolan would do just fine in “the real world”. He’s the Catholic Church’s top guy in the U.S, and just counting the U.S., the Catholic Church would be a Fortune 500 company. Basically, he is kind of a CEO.

      Apr 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • iDavid
      iDavid

      @B

      Are you saying, assuming Dolan and Amodeo struck out and instead went home together on Sat night and decided to get married on Sunday, that they would be floating off in a Holy Golden Parachute given to Dolan by the Pope directly from the money ladened vaults of the Vatican?

      Apr 17, 2012 at 6:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 5 · iDavid wrote, “@B: Are you saying, assuming Dolan and Amodeo struck out and instead went home together on Sat night and decided to get married on Sunday, that they would be floating off in a Holy Golden Parachute given to Dolan by the Pope directly from the money ladened vaults of the Vatican?”

      Did you miss the phrase, “Aside from possibly losing retirement benefits”? The point was that he has marketable skills that could land him a high-paying management position.

      As to a “Holy Golden Parachute”, he might even be able to pull that off. He’s high enough up to know where the bodies are buried and could make the Pope an offer he can’t refuse. You know, like sending the Pontiff a nice little note such as, “Hallo Joseph. Ich rate Ihnen gerne, dass ich die gehieme Dokumenten ueber die Kindesmishandlung habe. Vielleicht koennen wir darueber besprechen, eine gegenseitig nutzbringende Loesung zu finden.” If true (or even if there was a possibility that it might be true), that would definitely get the Pope’s attention!

      Apr 17, 2012 at 8:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Steve
      Steve

      The question that the Cardinal has been asking is, how to condemn gay people.

      The question that the Cardinal should be asking is, how the church should minister to those people.

      There is a deep and important difference between condemning and ministering. The Cardinal appears not to understand that difference. Maybe he should pray about it.

      Apr 17, 2012 at 11:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Trelin
      Trelin

      I applaud him for trying this. Whether or not the Cardinal agrees, Amodeo should be proud that he has gotten this far, and made some waves. It’s about time these people of faith understand the hypocrisy they preach. You can proclaim you “love thy neighbor,” but when you proceed to disagree with the modern world and condemn homosexuals for simply progressing with their lives and living it honestly, you’re going against the exact words you swear by. Bravo Amodeo.

      Apr 18, 2012 at 12:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • iDavid
      iDavid

      You must translate, Martian is not my first language.

      Apr 18, 2012 at 12:58 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Pete n SFO
      Pete n SFO

      This whole notion is ridiculous.

      Dolan is devoid of anything worthwhile for young people, why would you want to expose these kids to that? He pulled your money; get busy on Plan B.

      And get some therapy gay-leaders.

      Apr 18, 2012 at 8:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • drewa24
      drewa24

      @Steve: The REAL question the Cardinal is asking himself is: How can I round up all these delicious twinks and give them a home in the catacombs of our Catholic Cathedrals and turn them into sloppy bottoms for all of our Pedophile priests to rape and molest. Jesus hear my prayer.

      Apr 18, 2012 at 10:44 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • James Hart
      James Hart

      I know of Joseph Amodeo. He is a publicity seeker. Very sad!

      Apr 18, 2012 at 8:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Patsy Stoned
      Patsy Stoned

      Cardinal Dolan is a cancer who should stay very far away from any kids, gay or straight. And she is FAR too ruddy to wear red. Not your color, girl, stick to neutrals.

      Apr 19, 2012 at 1:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 9 · iDavid wrote, “You must translate, Martian is not my first language.”

      Nor is German your second one, obviously. Feed it into a translator.
      Here it is again (with a couple of typos fixed):

      Hallo Josef. Ich rate Ihnen gerne, dass ich die geheime Dokumenten ueber den Kindesmissbrauch habe. Vielleicht koennen wir darueber besprechen, eine gegenseitig nutzbringende Loesung zu finden.

      If you are going to blackmail the pope about an embarrassment for the Vatican, do it in his native language.

      Apr 19, 2012 at 2:27 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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