A little over a year ago, I traveled to New York to attend a colloquium about the intersection of bisexuality and faith. The Religious Institute was calling together bisexual ministers and people of faith from diverse religious backgrounds to start a discussion that would ultimately inform their creation of Bisexuality: Making the Invisible Visible in Faith Communities, a guidebook for congregations to use in welcoming, affirming, and ministering to bisexual people. One of the women spear-heading the project emailed me several times before officially inviting me to the colloquium, mentioning that my name “kept coming up” in relation to Catholicism and bisexuality. I laughed and told her it was because I was the only Out Catholic Bisexual in the World. (Luckily, that isn’t true.)
While at the colloquium, I learned that the Religious Institute’s work targets “mainline” denominations who are already open to issues of progressive sexuality, and that their intent was not to “change the Pope’s mind” on anything. Still, I know that I and thousands of others have stayed connected to the Catholic Church precisely because we have found others–Sisters, monks, priests, or congregants–who are not waiting for the Pope to change his mind, but who are living a message of Christlike love and acceptance already. As such, this book might be especially needed by those CCD and Catholic High School teachers or priests or others officially affiliated with the church who sometimes feel like the only voice for an open and affirming vision of human sexuality. The Institute also has guidebooks relating to other issues of sexuality, such as reproductive technologies, sexual education, GLBTQ inclusivity, etc.
The book features a short excerpt from my essay about being bisexual that was published in Unruly Catholic Women Writers, as well as well as a reflection on Roman Catholic sexuality teachings by Kate Ott. It’s a great resource for those Catholics who strive to make the circle of acceptance within our denomination wider.