MA Art Museum celebrates DOMA win and loses Catholic Church funding

“We’re simply not going to support them institutionally as in the past.”

By Cathy Kristofferson, July 02, 2013

wamtweetLast week when the DOMA ruling was handed down by the Supreme Court, the Worcester Art Museum (WAM) excitedly posted and tweeted inviting all to marry at the museum.

Their website reads almost as an advertisement:

“The Worcester Art Museum hosts various events from corporate parties to weddings.”

Unfortunately the shared joy at the win for the LGBT community did not sit well with one of their sponsors. Their pronouncement got the attention of the local Catholic Church and so the public display of support for the LGBT community caused the pastor at St. Bernadette Parish in Northboro to say:

“We’re simply not going to support them institutionally as in the past. We’re just following the lead of the diocese on that.”

Photo courtesy Eric Limón Photography
Photo courtesy Eric Limón Photography

Lets not forget that in fact Massachusetts has had marriage equality since 2004.  The recent DOMA ruling gave MA couples those 1,138 federal rights and privileges same-sex married couples been missing out on.  Binational couples here are particularly impacted and now finally have parity under the immigration law with the right to petition for immigrant status for same-sex spouses.  It is highly likely that same-gender spouses have already taken wedding vows at the glorious venue.

WAM’s director of audience engagement, Adam Reed Rozan, responded to the Catholic Church’s statement:

“We welcome all guests to experience the joy of coming together with friends and family amidst 51 centuries of art. In this way, our museum becomes not only a repository of historical objects, but part of peoples’ personal narratives.”

The Worcester Telegram is also reporting:

“Laura J. Farnsworth, director of Greater Worcester Parents, Families, Friends and Allies of Gays (PFLAG), said she thinks it is horrible that St. Bernadette has taken the position. She said it is important that young people know that they are made the way God intended them to be and that they are loved.

“It’s kind of outrageous that the church could openly take that stance against equality,” she said. “I often wonder what is it going to take for them to truly repent and become the Christians they deem themselves to be.

This action on the part of the Catholic Church is nothing new to the LGBT community as the Church has positioned itself to actively lobby against equality at the highest of levels. This stinks of yet another vindictive and out of touch Catholic Church romp. What a shame!


2 thoughts on “MA Art Museum celebrates DOMA win and loses Catholic Church funding

  1. Reblogged this on JerBear's Queer News, Views & Memories and commented:
    I am a former citizen of Worcester and was active there in the LGBT community beginning in the late ’80s and ending when I moved out here to Santa Fe in August of 1996. I used to love to visit the Worcester Art Museum, an amazing institution with a great collection. I hope the community rallies around the WAM and supports them now.

  2. As I said in the reblog, I moved out here from Worcester. The sad irony is that while I was there I got to know several gay men connected with the diocese. I attended masses for men who died from AIDS. There were a lot of good people but the hierarchy forced them to look over their shoulder. I have no idea what’s happened in the many years that have passed but I am troubled by this story. It is a wonderful museum and I hope they attract new sponsors.

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