The word “Gospel” is derived from “Good News”. Pope Francis’ first Apostolic Exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), emphasised this aspect of the Gospel message, and insisted that evangelization and proclaiming the Gospel is a task for all Catholics, not just for ordained clergy. In taking on this task in accordance with our own constitution, we are in effect, bringing good news to LGBT+ Catholics – and carrying out Pope Francis’ instruction (and have been doing so, since well before he issued it).
Specifically in terms of sexuality and gender, we seek to reassure our people that it is indeed possible to reconcile their sexual orientation or gender identity with their Catholic faith – and show them how this can be done.
We do this by a range of means. Our existence provides a simple counterexample to the claim that one cannot be both Catholic, and gay (or lesbian, bisexual or transgender). One can, and we are. The overwhelming majority of our members identify as both Catholic, and openly LGBT+. Many of these are also fully active, practising Catholics, out and proud in their local parishes, where they make valued contributions to parish life.
The idea that “gay Catholic” is an oxymoron, that it is impossible to be both a practicing Catholic and LGBT+, rests on a partial, inaccurate and incomplete reading of what Church teaching actually says. Quest aims to counter this by promoting a more complete and balanced understanding of Church teaching, by drawing attention to where matters of sexuality and sexual ethics fit in the broader context of the Gospels and Catholic teaching as a whole, and to the many neglected but supportive elements that also exist.