Wednesday, June 3, 2015

World Meeting of Families said NO! Fortunate Families is not welcome because our message of 'please don't harm your child thru rejection' is one they don't understand....

Subject: The Exhibit Decision
Date: Fri, 22 May 2015 00:13:10 +0000
Dear Ms. Word,

Thank you for reaching out to the WMOF. We appreciate your willingness to serve in so many ways. The information about your repeated applications and contacts around exhibiting were shared with me. Please rest assured that your application was considered with due diligence and I regret that this was not conveyed to you via a timely response. Apologies for the delay—it is clear that you were quite diligent in seeking information on your end as well.

Let me explain the decision that was reached about your exhibit. Fortunate Families (FF) was not accepted as an exhibitor because the FF website and associated links claim that the organization is meeting parents where they are at but then proceeds to indicate that if parents give any sense of disapproval of behavior at all (or even ambivalence), they are harming their children and even setting them up for greater risk of suicide.

FF advocates for parental acceptance of LGBT children and adolescents in such a way that “acceptance” requires that parents must show full acceptance of both the person and the entirety of every aspect of the person’s gay or transgender lifestyle, spelling out the consequences of any lack of full endorsement of a child’s lifestyle as causing psychological harm to the children and even likely driving the child to suicide.

There are certainly some wonderful things about FF, and the fact that you and your husband are taking homeless LGBT youth into your home and caring for them is admirable, but the above issues caused your application to be declined upon review and re-review.

Mary Beth

Dr. Mary Beth Yount, Ph.D.
Director of Content and Programming, World Meeting of Families 2015
Assistant Professor of Theology at Neumann University, RAB 326
1-855-963-2015 x705

1 comment:

  1. Below you'll find my message to Dr. Mary Beth Yount, asking for her team to reconsider the rejection of Fortunate Families and other LGBT organizations from the discussion table.

    I pray that our cause wins out before the next tragic circumstance of neglect. I pray that God's Love shines through the wall of ignorance and hatred.


    Dr. Yount,

    I have read your response to Fortunate Families regarding their exclusion from the World Meeting of Families, and I feel that your rejection is in opposition to Christ's message of "Love Above All Else". I ask that the World Meeting of Families allows Fortunate Families and others to engage in discussion about the role of Family and Church for LGBT people.

    LGBT people are often caught between understanding and embracing the long-squelched struggle of sexual orientation and fulfilling the often vicarious dreams of their parents. Many questioning teens have no outlet for fear of rejection or retaliation by their parents. What love is there to neglect your child in his most vulnerable state?

    It is the God-given authority of the church to ensure the message of God's Love endures from generation to generation. And not just the repetition of the message in word, but by living and breathing the message in deed. When the church fails to espouse this message in all cases, the exclusion becomes a cancer within its very walls. Doubt creeps in and poisons any good there might have been. If the church can eliminate one class of people from God's Love, who will be next?

    The Church has a long and sordid history of excluding vulnerable people from God's Love:
    * 20 years ago, divorced catholics were denied communion by the Catholic Church.
    * 30 years ago, single parents were denied baptism for their children by the Catholic Church.
    * 50 years ago, the Catholic Church excommunicated people who married outside of the faith.
    * 60 years ago, the Catholic Church in Philadelphia forbade African-Americans from worshiping among whites. Even today, the color boundary is still enforced in action if not by rule.

    Excluding LGBT people is yet another error made by the Catholic Church and its' adherents, with terrible consequences. Depression, self-mutilation, and suicide are common among youth who are rejected by those who God has sent to love them unconditionally. Homelessness is highest among LGBT youth.

    As the long-silent stories of oppression are finally exposed, families are understanding the failure of the Catholic Church to protect those most vulnerable. Those who once looked to the church as a pillar of truth now see the vile consequences of years of exclusion and disregard of human dignity in the name of God's Love.

    The Catholic Church must truly espouse God's Love, ensuing that each person created in God's Image is welcomed to the Table of Plenty. God created us all. Jesus redeemed us all. The Holy Spirit moves us all. Therefore we must all work together to ensure that EVERYONE is treated with respect and dignity!

    The World Meeting of Families is a venue for discussion of pertinent topics with Christ's message of "Love Above All Else" as center. What topic is more pertinent than that of LGBT inclusion? I call on your team to welcome all interested parties to the table for a real discussion about the role of the Catholic Church and Catholic Families.

    Yours in Christ,

    Bill Powers