On Friday evening, Cardinal Francis George of Chicago finally issued a public apology for his comparison of the LGBT community and the Ku Klux Klan.
According to the Chicago Tribune, Cardinal George said, “I am truly sorry for the hurt my remarks have caused, particularly because we all have friends or family members who are gay and lesbian. This has evidently wounded a good number of people. I have family members myself who are gay and lesbian, so it's part of our lives. So I'm sorry for the hurt."
Dignity Chicago released a statement, welcoming the apology. Chris Pett, president of Dignity Chicago said, “A core element in our Catholic faith is the sacrament of reconciliation by which we admit our wrongs, seek and are given forgiveness. We welcome this apology from Cardinal George. As we know him as our bishop, we know that it is sincere and that he will work to avoid making such damaging and hurtful remarks in the future.”
Dignity Chicago, as well as LGBT-affirming Catholics across the United States, have used the Cardinal’s comparison to help educate the Catholic Church and promote reconciliation, healing and wholeness. Pett continues, “We also invite a dialogue with the Cardinal, so that he might better understand and love the LGBT community in all its facets, especially those in his own Catholic Church who continue to be alienated by Church teaching that regards LGBT people as less than ‘wonderfully made’ children of God. We encourage the Cardinal to open his arms to our community and listen to the truth in our lives and the joy we take in our faith.”
GLAAD also welcomes the apology and continues to promote a fair and accurate portrayal of LGBT people by the Roman Catholic hierarchy. GLAAD will continue to work with LGBT-affirming Catholic people and organizations to promote understanding and acceptance within the Roman Catholic Church.