Fortunate Families Meeting in Florence (Italy). Catholic parents with LGBT children meet their priests
Press release of the association LA TENDA DI GIONATA (Italy), translated from Davide Ebro
“Why am I here? How have I come to be here? What can we do together, both as parents and as children? How can we build bridges and tear down the walls of discrimination and abuse, the walls of homophobic prejudice that are present both in society and in the church?”.
These questions were asked at a meeting which took part in Florence on 2 March 2019, called Fortunate Families. The meeting brought together 80 Catholic parents and their LGBT children, along with many young LGBT Christians and members of pastoral teams from all over Italy. They gathered at the parish of Madonna della Tosse in Florence, which hosted this day dedicated to “accompanying the families of homosexual people” (using the words from the final document of the Synod of the Bishops, 24/10/2015).
Here are some of the testimonies from those who took part in the meeting. Mattia from Verona wrote that the meeting felt like a breath of fresh air, unlike his own experience in his home town and his parish community, where he feels choked by the prejudice and homophobic atmosphere.
Carmine from Rome said: fathers and mothers hugged children who were not their own, and made connections, and new families emerged, even for those people who, sometimes, find it difficult to get by.
Two parents, Corrado and Michela from Parma, felt they were not alone. They said: “We are walking together, and on our journey, we open up new roads. We think we are fortunate families, and we thank our children for sharing their hearts with us. We believe we have received a precious gift even when it may seem hard, and this gift is the chance to open our hearts to a bigger and wider love and welcome a greater good. We can have relationships that are true, open and authentic, we can meet other people, we can share our journeys, our problems and our hopes. This becomes a prophecy for others and for the future.”
We look forward to welcoming everyone back for another weekend (31 May until 2 June 2019) which will take place at a wonderful manor house in Sestri Levante, with the theme “On our journey we open up new roads”. It is time to meet and open up new roads, together.
Original test: Echi dall’incontro “Famiglie Fortunate” di Firenze