Gay-rights activists protest at Holy Name Cathedral

Mon. February 15, 2010 12:00 AM by News Staff

protests outside holy name cathedral

photo credit // gln, via flicker cc
Chicago, IL - Braving the bitterly cold temperatures, more than 100 protesters marched outside of Chicago's Holy Name Cathedral Sunday, Valentine's Day, to highlight the role the Church's leadership has played in promoting inequality.

The Gay Liberation Network organized the Freedom-to-Marry Day picket to bring to light the work that Chicago's Cardinal Francis George has been doing, behind the scenes, to limit, stall and stop LGBT rights.

The protestors shouted, "Hey, hey, ho, ho, homophobia has got to go!" and, "Holy Name, holy shame!" as churchgoers arrived at Holy Name Cathedral. Some protestors reportedly urged church members to withhold their weekly tithes.

"We want to drag the church's bigotry out of The Closet," GLN co-founder Andy Thayer told the Chicago Tribune.

According to GLN, Cardinal George attempted to kill LGBT inclusion as a protected class in the Illinois Human Rights Act, which now protects gays and lesbians from housing and employment discrimination.

Cardinal George is the head of the national Conference of Catholic Bishops which funded the Prop 8 campaign against marriage equality in California.

In 2007 Cardinal George wrote in a column for the Archdiocese of Chicago newspaper that same-sex behavior "brings people's salvation into jeopardy."

Congressman Gutierrez's office recently told a GLN representative that opposition from the Catholic Church, presumably directed by Cardinal George, was the reason that all LGBT protections were stripped from the current immigration reform bill he's sponsoring.

Colleen Dolan, spokeswoman for the Chicago Archdiocese, told the Tribune that the protesters were misdirected.

Michael Lehet contributed to this report.