[WARNING: Links contain explicit material.]
April 20, 2018 (Joseph Sciambra) – On May 15, 2018, the official LGBT ministry Out at St. Paul, located at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church in New York City, will host a “Rooftop Social” at gay sports bar Boxers in Hell's Kitchen. According to Out at St. Paul:
Please join us for an OSP social on Tuesday, May 15, at Boxers Hell's Kitchen. This is a great opportunity to catch up with your old friends in the OSP community and to meet new friends as well. Please join us, especially if you are a newcomer to the OSP community! All are welcome.
Boxers regularly features viewing parts of “Ru Paul's Drag Race,” theme dance parties, and shirtless bartenders. One female tourist offered her impression of Boxers on Yelp:
We went here accidentally after hearing music blast from the doors. Curious as to what it was, we peeked in and discovered a whole new world. It was jam packed with men and women alike [more men than women ofc] and there was a well bodied man shaking his booty like Beyonce on stage. His undies were so low, I thought something might slip. Soon the dance floor filled up in front of him and everyone started dancing the night away.
This is not the first time Out at St. Paul has held meetings at gay bars. On March 22, 2017, Out at St. Paul hosted a “Spring Social” at the Hell's Kitchen gay bar Bottoms Up. Then, again, on January 31, 2018, they hosted their “Winter Social” at the Rise gay bar in Hell's Kitchen. The Rise bar is a well known gay bar in Manhattan that is often included on lists ranking the best gay bars in New York City.
In a video series entitled “Owning Our Faith,” featuring various LGBT members from the Out at St. Paul ministry, a “gay” Catholic man said the following:
I think what's interesting is that the Catholic Church probably thinks that it is accepting of gay people, because its message is 'gay people exist and we should love them and not discriminate against them.' But because the Church also tells gay people essentially that they need to be celibate, what the Church is saying is 'you cannot live fully. You can be gay but you can't live that life.' And so that inherently is discriminatory.
On June 9, 2018, Out at St. Paul plans to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art for the “Heavenly Bodies” exhibition. According to the group's Facebook notice:
Just [sic] us for a visit to the Met exhibition, “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination.” We will meet at the Met at 3 pm on Saturday, June 9 to consider how high fashion and Catholicism collide. Remember, you are intrinsically fabulous!
Out at St. Paul will also celebrate another “Pride” Mass at the site of the Stonewall Riots, in conjunction with the annual New York City “Pride” festivities, on June 21, 2018.
Jesuit author James Martin is a vocal supporter of Out at St. Paul. On July 16, 2017, Martin included the ministry on his book tour for Building a Bridge; he had previously spoken to the group on March 2, 2017. On March 17, 2018, during his speech at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, Martin singled out the ministry for particular praise.
Please contact the Archdiocese of New York:
Cardinal Timothy Dolan
1011 First Ave
New York, NY 10022
Published with permission from Joseph Sciambra.