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STATEMENTS & REFLECTIONS

Welcome, Support, and Dignity for ALL

Updated: May 2



by +Kae Madden, Bishop of the Rocky Mountain Region of the Ecumenical Catholic Communion


In the Ecumenical Catholic Communion, we rejoice in the Way, Truth and Life of Jesus, the Christ. We strive to model our lives on Jesus’ example and teaching of compassion and inclusivity. Doing so is not simple, nor easy. We ask ourselves: “Where is Life to be found?” As the poet Rilke offered, we endeavor to “live into the questions.” Holding the complexities of contemporary life against some well-prayed core values of Love and Human Dignity is a first step in discovery and discernment.

 

We, in the ECC, intentionally lean into welcoming all as the Beloved of God. Following Jesus’ example, our doors… and hearts… and tables... are open to ALL. We are blessed and enriched by the diversity of the human experience.

 

You may have seen some comments and press regarding a document recently released by the Vatican: Declaration “Dignitas Infinita” on Human Dignity (2 April 2024) (vatican.va).  As Ecumenical Catholics, we celebrate an inclusive Catholicism,  distinct from Roman Catholicism. If you are interested, I invite you to go directly to the document to read and ponder and pray with the values articulated regarding the immeasurable dignity of the human person. The message includes much beauty and truth, magnifying the depth and breadth of human dignity and Creation. This labor of love issued by Pope Francis brings into question our independence, economy, culture, and motivation as we make decisions, and gives us much to consider prayerfully.  

 

In the reading of the document, we likely are impacted most deeply by topics with which we resonate and are familiar to our lived experience. While mostly reflective of our shared traditional Catholic social teaching, there are some topics and implied absolutes with which you may vehemently disagree or find incongruous. We intentionally extend our compassion and love to those feeling offended, outraged or marginalized by some of the declarations therein, including ourselves.

 

Know that as ECC communities, we respect and honor the primacy of an informed conscience. Life is complex. Every individual and situation is unique in relationship to God. Our communities tend to be small in number, thus we get to know each other, sharing in our joys and sorrows and struggles. We walk with each other. Through study and prayer, we stand with each person in discerning the path of authenticity and congruency to which the Holy Spirit leads. In our daily living, as we earnestly seek the will of God in prayer, we trust that Spirit-led, Love-infused choices will emerge, and peace will prevail. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13: 7-8)

 

We reach out with love and affirmation to all who search for truth and right action in unique personal circumstances, including our transgender neighbors. Their journey is often arduous and we offer support, welcome and refuge as they move toward their true alignment of body, soul, mind and spirit.  With all who seek the Way, the Truth and the Life, we support you. We love you. We welcome you. 

 

We invite you to enter into conversation. We have much to learn from one another as we explore and choose Dignity for ALL.  

Peace and Love,

Bishop Kae

 

In deeply personal responses of different voices, we include the links below:


BELOVED BY GOD:

A DECLARATION OF A CATHOLIC COMMITMENT TO TRANS-AFFIRMATION which the ECC Rocky Mountain Region is endorsing


IN RESPONSE TO “DIGNITAS INFINITA,” LET ME TELL YOU ABOUT THE ECC


A GAY, MARRIED PRIEST'S RESPONSE TO “ON HUMAN DIGNITY”


JAMES F. KEENAN, S.J.: “DIGNITAS INFINITA” FALTERS WHEN IT DOESN’T PRACTICE WHAT IT PREACHES


CATHOLIC STUDENTS, THEOLOGIANS, MINISTERS WRITE NCR OPEN LETTER TO POPE FRANCIS


Here's another take on On Human Dignity -  a welcome twist.

"Pope Provides Sr. Jeannine a Clarification of Dignitas Infinita

~Fr. Michael comments, evidently stuff gets lost in translation. If Sr. Jeannine Gramick's take on Pope Francis' meaning is true, the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith should delete the Declaration's condemnation of gender affirming surgeries. In Acts 15:1-6, some Pharisees insist on old understandings of who is in and who is out. But Paul and Barnabus, who have listened to and developed relationship with those excluded, hold sway in the holy conversations with the other leaders of the church. Sr. Jeannine is one who has listened to and developed relationship with those excluded. May the holy conversations be fruitful.

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