Freedom of Conscience and Justice Before the Law for All

Press Release from the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups: David Berger, Catholic theologian and teacher, has had his license to teach in Catholic institutes withdrawn by Cardinal Meissner of the Cologne diocese.

The reason given is that the Roman Catholic Church does not permit people living an openly gay lifestyle to hold teaching posts.

The members of the European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups received this news with regret and dismay. It is our understanding of the Christian message that Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people are called to live honest, transparent lives. This means not having to hide or deform ourselves.

Even if Cardinal Meissner is acting in accord with Church law, his actions are clearly  a breach of Human Rights and contradict the Roman Catholic Teaching on human dignity.

We share the position expressed by over 300 German-speaking theologians in their 2010 Memorandum demanding freedom of conscience, equality and justice for all, particularly for those in the service of the Church.

We act on behalf of all those who love their work in the Church and Church organisations, but who, like David Berger, are unable to meet the throttling, narrow moral demands of the hierarchy due to their sexual orientation and gender identity. It should be possible for Christians of all denominations to be given the right to live lives of love, freedom and responsibility.

The European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups is an umbrella organisation of 38 christian groups from 23 european countries and the USA whose members are gay, lesbian, bisexual or trans-people.  It promotes dialogue with Christian Churches, fights homophobia and its consequences in the Church. It supports LGBT Christians who suffer discrimination from Church and society on the grounds of their lifestyle. Delegates meet every year for an annual conference which is currently meeting in Berlin (3-8 May 2011). Our key topics for this year‘s conference are Human Rights for LGBT people and Interreligious Dialogue.

For further information contact Andrea Krüger (aekrueger(at)