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Ask Cardinal Dolan to Break Bread with Nicholas Coppola

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Join Nicholas Coppola and GLAAD in signing the Change.org petition to invite Cardinal Dolan to dine with Nicholas Coppola so he can see that they are just like any other American Catholic family.

Nicholas Coppola, the Catholic man stripped of all volunteer duties after he married his husband, has launched a Change.org petition, inviting Cardinal Timothy Dolan to dinner and conversation about the relationship between the Roman Catholic hierarchy and LGBT people.

The Change.org petition targets Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York and the Chairman of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. Cardinal Dolan recently appeared on This Week with George Stephanopoulos, saying that the Roman Catholic Church isn't "anti-anybody," stating the church has to do better at listening to and supporting gay people.

Nicholas' invitation in the Change.org petition gives Cardinal Dolan the opportunity to listen to a real gay Catholic and dialog about the relationship between LGBT people and the Roman Catholic hierarchy.

"Cardinal Dolan says he wants the Roman Catholic Church to be friendly to LGBT people, but experiences like mine show that it's not," said Nicholas. "I'm hoping that by sitting down, Cardinal Dolan can learn about the real lives and realities of LGBT people, and ways that the Church can make a real difference in our lives."

"If Cardinal Dolan wants to make good on his desire to better communicate with LGBT Catholics, he should start by sitting down and hearing the story of Nicholas Coppola," said Ross Murray, GLAAD's Director of News and Faith Initiatives. "Cardinal Dolan risks nothing by breaking bread with Nicholas, and he could demonstrate that the Roman Catholic Church really does care about LGBT people."

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TIMELINE

October 27, 2012: Nicholas Coppola and David Crespo are married.

December 6, 2012: Diocese of Rockville Centre receives anonymous letter, informing them that Nicholas is an openly gay married man who is volunteering at church.

January 9, 2013: Diocese of Rockville Centre faxes anonymous letter to St. Anthony's Parish, directing the local priest to remove Nicholas. 

January 21, 2013: Fr. Lombardi informs Nicholas that he is unable to serve St. Anthony Parish in any capacity. 

March 31, 2013: Cardinal Timothy Dolan appears on This Week with George Stephanopoulos. Says that the Roman Catholic Church "isn't anti-anybody" but needs to be better at reaching out to gay and lesbian people. 

April 3, 2013: GLAAD breaks the story of Nicholas' removal

April 4, 2013: Faithful America launches a petition, requsting the Diocese of Rockville Centre to reinstate Nicholas to his former service of the church.

April 11, 2013: Nicholas delivers over 18,000 signatures gathered through Faithful America. Diocese refuses to meet with him, later issues a statement reaffirming ouster. 

April 15, 2013: Nicholas launches Change.org petition aimed at Cardinal Timothy Dolan, asking the Cardinal to break bread with him and his husband, David