WASHINGTON — Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez is urging area Catholics to join him for a special midday Mass June 16 on the solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus that will start a day of prayer prior to the scheduled honoring by the Los Angeles Dodgers of an LGBTQ+ drag group that dresses as nuns.
“Please join me! And please share this invitation with your friends and loved ones and neighbors,” Archbishop Gomez tweeted June 13. He said those gathered for Mass at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in Los Angeles “will be praying in a special way for our city and our country, for an end to prejudice, and for renewed respect for the religious beliefs of all Angelenos and all Americans.”
The Dodgers’ decision to invite, disinvite, then re-invite the group called the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence to present it with the team’s Community Service Award at their Pride Night game June 16 has caused controversy, protests, and calls for prayer.
Archbishop Gomez June 8 urged Catholics to pray the traditional Litany of the Sacred Heart ahead of the June 16 event as a way to “stand together in prayer” in opposition to this. Leaders of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops made a similar request June 12, asking Catholics to recite the prayer in “reparation for the blasphemies against our Lord we see in our culture today.”
Demonstrations against the event have been organized by Catholic Vote and other groups. Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas, planned to lead a Eucharistic procession the afternoon of June 16 at one of the Dodger Stadium parking lots as part of a prayerful protest sponsored by Virgin Most Powerful Radio.
Also, Catholic parishes in the Los Angeles Archdiocese are planning either Holy Hours or times of prayer the night of June 16.
A statement about the upcoming Dodgers’ event on the archdiocesan website says that the team is “honoring a group that mocks women religious, and worse, desecrates the cross, profanes the Eucharist, and disrupts holy Mass has caused disappointment, dismay, and pain in our Catholic community, as well as among our fellow Christians and people of goodwill.”
It adds that the archdiocese “stands for the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which means we stand against any form of bigotry, hate, or sacrilege.”