Press Release: European LGBTIQ Christians Welcome Strong EU “LGBTIQ Equality Strategy”
More Support of LGBTIQ People of Faith Is Badly Needed
The Board of the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups welcomes the new EU “LGBTIQ Equality Strategy” for 2020–2025 issued on 12 November 2020. Serious challenges for all LGBTIQ people are identified and actions proposed. Many intersections in the lives of LGBTIQ people are mentioned. The European Forum believes a stronger emphasis on the intersection of sexual orientation, gender identity, and religion & belief is needed to face contemporary dangers to all LGBTIQ people.
Statement on the Situation in Poland
LGBTI+ People of Faith Oppose Polish Proposal for “Reparative Therapy Clinics”
The European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups and Global Interfaith Network for People of All Sexes, Sexual Orientations, Gender Identities and Expression are deeply outraged to find that the Episcopal Conference of Poland, gathering all Roman Catholic bishops of that country, has issued a paper on 28 August 2020 which states the necessity to create “clinics to help people seeking to restore their […] natural sexual orientation.” They also deeply regret the Polish Government endorsing such a proposal, as Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki stated when he took questions from Radio Rodzina, quoted in the Polish newspaper Gazeta on 29 August 2020.
Organisers Forced to Cancel LGBT Christian Forum in Yerevan, Armenia Amidst Violence and Death Threats
The European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups and the “New Generation” Humanitarian NGO (Yerevan, Armenia) are forced to announce the cancellation of this year’s Forum of LGBT Christians of Eastern Europe and Central Asia that was due to take place in Yerevan on 15–18 November 2018. We are deeply distressed and disappointed that political violence, death threats, and vandalism directed at LGBTI people are constituting a genuine threat to the safety of our participants.
Response to the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Memo to Government Agencies
The European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups was shocked and saddened by the news that the US Department of Health and Human Resources has issued a memo to Government Agencies proposing that gender and sex are one, and that they are “determined on a biological basis”, if necessary supported by genetic evidence. There can only be male and female. Such a rigid viewpoint rules out any possibility of recognition of those with variant gender identity and could also affect some people with intersex conditions.
Council of Europe Grants European Forum Participatory Status
We are very happy that the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups (EF) has been granted participatory status in the Council of Europe.
The Council of Europe is the continent’s leading Human Rights organisation. All 47 member states have signed the European Convention of Human Rights. With this decision, the Council affirms that listening to the perspectives of minorities is crucial when dealing with questions of Human Rights. The EF is now among the 300 plus international non-governmental organisations (INGOs) that have been granted participatory status, giving a voice to LGBT people of faith.
Paying a Visit to the Council of Europe
Well, that was a very interesting and informative experience. It had been in my agenda for quite some weeks, but, for a long time, it was not clear exactly what I was going to do in Strasbourg for the European Forum on 22 and 23 April. It is probably illustrative of ordinary European Forum members like me trying to find their way into the wonderful world of the larger and more important European institutions that, in the long run, can be helpful for the cause of LGBT Christians/believers. I was invited by our project coordinator Florin Buhuceanu as a member of the Political Advocacy Working Group of the Forum.