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NGLTF calls for more open Catholic Church

NGLTF calls for more open Catholic Church

Although John Paul II was an advocate for peace and human rights for some groups, he frequently left GLBT Catholics "bereft of hope and still waiting for the bright day of their full inclusion in the Church," said a statement released Thursday by a group comprising more than 40 faith-based groups and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. The National Religious Leadership Roundtable of NGLTF says the pope's death provides a chance for the church to become more open and tolerant. "This is a golden opportunity for the Catholic Church to rejoice in his geopolitical accomplishments and take up where he left off in the achievement of justice among Catholics," said Mary Hunt, codirector of the Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics, and Ritual. "Women expect the same freedom of choice Pope John Paul II urged for Cubans. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people deserve the same respect and freedom he championed for those who lived under Communism. Let that be his legacy." Added Sam Sinnett, president of the gay Catholic group Dignity USA: "This pope led the church in teaching damaging misrepresentations about the health and holiness of our loving relationships--calling them part of an 'ideology of evil'--and about the raising of our children while covering up the real abuse of children and related abuse of power by some of John Paul II's brother bishops and priests. He also misused his authority to stop fellow cardinals and bishops from speaking for the obvious moral good of using condoms in the prevention of the spread of HIV. We are saddened that John Paul II has left this life without having used his personal faith, intellect, and authority to learn how God is speaking through GLBT people to spread the Gospel."

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