BALTIMORE, Maryland-- As marriage equality is signed into law in Maryland, Governor Martin O'Malley will address a national conference of Catholics who support equality and justice for lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender (LGBT) people.
O'Malley, a Catholic, has withstood pressure from the Catholic hierarchy to oppose marriage equality legislation. Yet, while the hierarchy opposes such measures, Catholic voters strongly support these initiatives.
The governor will attend "From Water to Wine: Lesbian/Gay Catholics and Relationships," a symposium scheduled for March 15-17, 2012, at the Renaissance Inner Harbor Hotel, 202 East Pratt Street, Baltimore. The event is organized by New Ways Ministry, a national Catholic education ministry based in Mount Rainier, Maryland, which works for justice and equality for LGBT people in the church and society. He will speak during the luncheon on Friday, March 16th, 12:45 pm.
"As Catholics, we are proud of Governor O'Malley's ardent support of marriage equality," said Francis DeBernardo, Executive Director of New Ways Ministry. "His support is in the best tradition of Catholicism's legacy of social justice for all. We are happy to have this opportunity to thank him for his work and to show how faithful Catholics support full equality for LGBT people."
The symposium is expected to attract 400 Catholic leaders from across the country, many of them priests, religious sisters, campus ministers, and other pastoral personnel.
The meeting's timely theme of "relationships" will be examined from a variety of different perspectives from national and international Catholic speakers and thinkers:
1) Bishop Geoffrey Robinson of Australia, author, Confronting Power and Sex in the Catholic Church;
2) Patricia Beattie Jung, Professor of Christian Ethics, St. Paul School of Theology, author, Catholic Sexual Ethics in the 21st Century;
3) Luke Timothy Johnson, Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, Emory University, author, The Writings of the New Testament: An Interpretation;
4) Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, author of Failing America's Faithful: How Today's Churches Are Mixing God with Politics and Losing Their Way;
5) Richard Rodriguez, a gay author, whose book Days of Obligation: An Argument With My Mexican Father, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
Additionally, eight workshops facilitated by national leaders on Catholic LGBT issues will focus on: youth and young adults; African-American issues; Latino/a issues, marriage, transgender issues; gay priests; lesbian nuns; coalition-building.
(A brochure with full details on speakers, topics, and other symposium information is attached. PLEASE NOTE: Because Governor O'Malley was not confirmed as a speaker when this document was printed, his appearance is not listed in it. )
For more information about the symposium and to receive press credentials, please contact New Ways Ministry, 301-277-5674.
New Ways Ministry is a 35-year old national Catholic education ministry of justice and reconciliation for LGBT Catholics and the wider church and civil communities. It was founded in 1977 by Sister Jeannine Gramick and Father Robert Nugent. For more information, visit www.NewWaysMinistry.org .
Francis DeBernardo Executive Director New Ways Ministry 4012 29th Street Mount Rainier, Maryland 20712 phone: 301-277-5674 email: firstname.lastname@example.org website: www.newwaysministry.org