Rainbow Sash Supporters from Other Christian Churches,
Other Faiths, and of No Religious Belief.
A significant number
of people who are not Catholics have proudly worn the Rainbow Sash with
welcome and affirm their involvement, commitment and support. it
is important to recognise that the Catholic Church is not an isolated
It claims, and it
has, an influence on Christianity as a whole, on the whole quality of
religious faith within our society, and on the laws, practices,
policies, structures and ideals of many countries around the world.
In this context, the
Rainbow Sash Movement recognizes and welcomes all those who wish to make
a peaceful, clear and public statement to the church regarding its
teachings, policies, attitudes and actions regarding gay, Lesbian,
bisexual and transgender people, whether they be Catholics, other
Christians, people of other faiths, or people of no religious faith.
All people of
goodwill, who embrace the dignified, peaceful and completely non-violent
nature of our vision and practice are welcome to join us in standing up
within the church.
Concerning Holy Communion:
However, because of the Catholic Church's official rule
that only baptised Catholics are entitled to receive the Catholic
Eucharist, we only encourage people who identify as Catholics to
actually come forward seeking Communion. We include in this invitation
those baptised Catholics who may have "left" the church because of
issues of justice and sexuality.
In common with
large numbers of Catholics, many of us in the Rainbow Sash Movement
strongly question this church policy, however in the formal Rainbow Sash
action we want to keep the issues simple and clear, and not confuse them
with the complex and emotive issue of inter-communion. We also wish to
counter critics who would dismiss us as not being "real Catholics", or
as "just angry gay activists".
We are people of
faith, courage and integrity.
Therefore, our invitation to
supporters who are not Catholics is to attend Mass with us, to wear the
Rainbow Sash with us, to stand in their places in silent witness as we
go forward to Communion, to stand with us as we return to our seats,
possibly having been refused the Eucharist, and so to make clear their
own stance as people who challenge the Catholic Church.
We also look forward to the day when various forms of the
Rainbow Sash Movement will develop within other churches and other
faiths, and we will have the chance to stand in solidarity with those
sisters and brothers in their own communities.