LGBTQ Catholic Ministry Conference
Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., August 2-4
Each summer, Outreach gathers LGBTQ lay people, clergy, scholars, artists, educators, students and family members to build community, share best practices and worship together.
Our 2024 conference will be held at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., from August 2-4. Sign up for our email list to be notified about updates and our full schedule when it’s available.
Last year’s conference: Outreach 2023 in images
During a homily in September 2016, Pope Francis described a major theme of his papacy: fostering “the culture of encounter.” As reported by L’Osservatore Romano, the pope said that, on the street, “people pass each other, but they do not encounter each other.” Francis (and Christ) calls Catholics to something different—a way of meeting people, a way of entering into dialogue that reflects a true Christian compassion.
There is no doubt that Jesus was an extraordinary communicator who drew people towards him through mercy and garnered the trust of the Apostles in his wisdom. In imitating Christ, the pope asks Catholics to truly meet the other with “not just seeing, but looking; not just hearing, but listening.”
Our second in-person conference, hosted by Fordham University from June 16 to 18, 2023, provided a live forum to share best pratices on LGBTQ pastoral ministry, to build a diverse community of believers and to worship together. We welcomed panelists and attendees from the U.S., Argentina, Australia, England, Italy, Spain, Malta, Belgium and Germany. We heard stirring keynotes from Tania Tetlow, the president of Fordham; Marianne Duddy-Burke, the executive director of DignityUSA; and Juan Carlos Cruz, a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors. And we were graced with the presence and support of Archbishop John C. Wester of Santa Fe, N.M., who celebrated our closing Mass at the Church of St. Paul the Apostle.
Below, you will find pictures of the culture of encounter in practice. The 2023 Outreach conference gathered hundreds of people from around the world and brought them face-to-face, where the French philosopher Emmanuel Levinas writes that we become responsible for one another. Encountering the face of the other draws us closer to Christ and demands us to discover others with tenderness; we encounter “the word of God in the face,” says Levinas. Please enjoy the faces below as a reflection of the People of God.