Press release of La Tenda di Gionata (Italy), 15 May 2019
On International Day against homo, bi and transphobia 2019 vigils are taking place in Italy, Spain, Malta, and for the very first time in Budapest, Hungary.
Since 2007 Christians of all denominations have prayed together with their LGBT sisters and brother to stand against the violence and discrimination of homo and transphobia. This year’s theme is: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. You are precious and honoured in my sight, and I love you.” (Isaiah 43, 1-4). Several parishes and congregations will host watches, prayer meetings, services and silent vigils from 12th May until 7th June 2019 and will invite people of good will to be a ray of light in this restless Europe, and witness the value of inclusion of diversity.
In Italy, vigils have started on Sunday, 12 May. In Genoa an ecumenical vigil took place in S. Pietro in Banchi’s Catholic Church. In Florence, during the mass at Madonna della Tosse Catholic Church, the Christian LGBT group “Kairos” and their relatives took charge of the prayers.
Next dates are: Bergamo, 16 May, Church of Santi Maurizio e Fermo, with Catholic Bishop Francesco Beschi coming along, organised in partnership by the community of San Fermo, by the LGBT group La Creta and the Waldensian community; in Spain, in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, organised by the Loyola Centre of Jesuits in Las Palmas; more vigils are taking place in Madrid, Barcelona and Seville.
On IDAHOBIT day (17 May), vigils will take place in Bologna, Palermo, Rome, Trapani, Turin, Sanremo and Venice. Hungary will join for the first time: check out Mary Mandàk Lutheran Church House in Budapest. More vigils will take place later on in Catholic communities in Ragusa, Assisi and Malta. The Christian LGBT group Camminando s’apre cammino will hold a prayer vigil at the residence of the Catholic bishop of Lucca.
In Milan, the ecumenical vigil will be co-organised by the Waldensian temple in Via Francesco Sforza and the Catholic church in Santa Maria della Passione. The last vigils will take place on 7th June after they will have reached several Christian communities and cities all over Europe.
Many parents of LGBT people will help organising. Anna Battaglia, president of the Association of Friends, Relatives and Allies of LGBT people in Ragusa, says: “our task is to show all our love and support. We have the task to witness the message of love preached and embodied by Jesus, to contrast this homophobic times in Italy.”
In particular, at many vigils the free leaflet “Fortunate parents. Living as Christian parents with LGBT children” will be distributed. It contains testimonies of Christian parents with LGBT children talking about their life, faith, hope and a love that makes them see what it was invisible to their eyes until then. Feel free to download it from gionata.org.
Will you join and pray with us?
Full and updated list of cities hosting vigils > https://inveglia.wordpress.com/category/english/
INFO> LIST OF CITIES WHERE VIGILS AND SERVICES WILL BE HELD IDAHOT 2019 (updating)