At the beginning of this year, I decided to start attending Courage. For those who don’t know what Courage is, it’s “a spiritual support group of Catholic lay men and women who aspire to live chaste lives in accordance with the Roman Catholic Church’s teaching on homosexuality.” This definition of the group was taken from ‘Courage – A Handbook’, which was published by the Church of St. John the Baptist in New York, NY.
To be honest, I wasn’t sure if this support group was for me. I found out about a year ago that there was a chapter of this group roughly 45 minutes from where I live. I decided to email the person whom the Church I attend flyer said too. I was told that in order to get into the group you had to go through an interview process with the priest who runs the group. I really didn’t want to go through all that just to meet some people who were also looking for the right answers on how to live one’s life as gay Catholic. So I never called the priest.
About a year later, I decided to email the guy again to see if I could get into the group. I don’t really know what prompted me to do this again. I would say one of the reasons was I had been dealing with loneliness more at that time then my first attempt to join Courage. I believe another part was that I was headed away from the path God wanted me to be on and He gave me a loving push in the right direction again. But whatever the reasons were, I did get a hold of the priest in charge of the group and found out the details of where and when the group met. To my relief, there was no interview or probing questions to be accepted into this group.
So far I have attended three meetings of Courage and I can say I am glad I did. I think one of the greatest things about this group is just knowing that there are others out there who are dealing with the same issues as I am. There are others who are seeking to not only live a rich and rewarding life, but to do it in a manner that God intended us to live. There is just comfort in knowing that one is not the only person trying to figure all this out and that there are others willing to help lead us who need it in the right direction.
If you have read some of my previous blogs, you would seen that I said that I wasn’t sure of the answer to whether or not it was right in God’s eyes for me to date or have an intimate/physical relationship with another man. I am still not convinced that he doesn’t want this. But saying that, I do plan on living a chastise life. I don’t want to do any random hook ups or rush into something and be having sex by the third date. If I do have sex again, it will be with a person I am in love with and a healthy relationship has been established.
The questions for this blog entry are: Do you attend courage? Do you attend a different group, maybe Dignity? Would you travel more than 30 minutes to attend a support group for being a gay Catholics? Feel free to respond to these questions by posting a comment. I and others would greatly appreciate it.
If you want information on Courage, I have a link to their website in the Resource section. There is also a lot of other useful information there as well.