Sara Kelley

3 posts

Our Return: The Story that Stuck with Me

Returning to the U.S. after our trip to World Youth Day, many of my friends and family had such positive things to say to me. Members of my church and other progressive Catholic friends I have were so excited to talk to me about my experience, and share how they felt following along with our journey online. In fact, I received 100% positive responses from friends and family.

There was one story, however, that a friend from my church in Baltimore told me, that gave me pause. Being very excited and supportive of the trip herself, she told me she had passed on one of the stories that was written about us to her neighbor, who is an older (in his 80s) man, and who is a gay Catholic. She told me that his response was one of anger. He asked what kind of church she attended that would support this kind of thing, quoted the Church’s stance on homosexuality to her, and told her that we were going aga

Pilgrims receiving communion

Receiving Communion at World Youth Day

Lauren and I attend a parish that we love in Baltimore. We feel very welcomed as a couple there, and never have to worry about being turned away from Communion or any of that other lame stuff. Here at World Youth Day, I have felt a little bit more nervous about that other lame stuff. We have been donning loads of rainbow attire, after all: rainbow sashes, rainbow pins, rainbow stickers, etc. Since I make a point of not attending churches in the U.S. where this might be a possibility, receiving communion at the masses we attended this week felt like a big deal to me. 

Before the plunge

There are a lot of reasons I wanted to go on this trip, having confession on the beach is not the least of those reasons, but one of the things I think is most important is the dialogue that we will be having. If we had to sum up the goal of our trip into one word, I think that would be the word: dialogue. We are literally inserting ourselves into the biggest group of young Catholics we could find, so we can have some conversations.