Resource Database


This is a basic resources list for LGBTQ+ persons, families, friends, and for those who minister with them. Their being listed does not necessarily mean that Fortunate Families agrees with all of the views presented in these materials.

wdt_ID Book Author Title Synopsis
1 Barnes, Hazel (Editor) Taylor, Sandra Author) And GOD saw it all was very good: Catholic LGBT in Europe Telling Their Stories “The stories of the LGBT Catholics in this book will make a difference in your life” assures Sister Jeannine Gramick in her prologue. Here you will find 34 personal stories divided into the six themes of: Family - Is Catholicism home? - A religious life? - A long journey - Significant events - Working for understanding and acceptance. The lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and non-gender-binary authors are aged from their 20s to their 80s and come from all walks of life in 13 European countries: Albania, Belgium, Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Italy, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, and Spain. These stories are for reading silently and for reading out loud, by all people - whether religious or not, whether LGBT or not. The authors share their stories of being LGBT and Catholic to help increase awareness, understanding and acceptance of LGBT Catholics and to ease the journeys of those still working on how to live out being both LGBT and Catholic.
2 Owens-Reid, Dannielle and Kristin Russo This Is a Book for Parents of Gay Kids: A Question and Answer Guide to Everyday Life Written in an accessible Q&A format, here, finally, is the go-to resource for parents hoping to understand and communicate with their gay child. Through their LGBTQ-oriented site, the authors are uniquely experienced to answer parents' many questions and share insight and guidance on both emotional and practical topics. Filled with real-life experiences from gay kids and parents, this is the book gay kids want their parents to read. (San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books. 2014)
3 Bowman, Alisa, and Angello, Michele Raising the Transgender Child: A Complete Guide for Parents, Families, and Caregivers. 2017 Offers much-needed answers to all the questions parents and other adults ask about raising and caring for transgender and gender diverse children: Is this just a phase? Did I do something to cause this? How do we protect these children? Who should I tell, and how? Will anyone love my child? The guide (Angello, an expert in the field of transgender parenting, and Bowman,a bestselling writer and parent advocate) provides a wealth of science-backed information alongside friendly and practical wisdom that is sure to comfort, guide, and inspire the family and friends of transgender and gender diverse children.
4 Colt, and Ehrensaft, DianeKeo-Meier The Gender Affirmative Model: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Supporting Transgender and Gender Expansive Children.  2018 Provides mental health professionals with a guide to the gender affirmative model, learning how to enable children to live as their authentic gender with the necessary social supports. The authors, Keo- Meier, a clinical psychologist and transgender queer two-spirit man, and Ehrensaft, a developmental and clinical psychologist, also address the multifaceted psychcological, social,, and community challenges faced by transgender and gender expansive children, as well as the potential mental health struggles that can arise as a result of bullying and more subtle forms of societal discrimination.
5 Nealy, Elijah C. Transgender Children and Youth: Cultivating Pride and Joy with Families in Transition 2017 parents, teachers, and mental health professionals. These days it is practically Forimpossible not to hear about some aspect of transgender life. Whether the bathroom issue, trans people in the military,, or on television, trans life has become front and center. A therapist and former executive director of the NYC LGBT Community Center, and a trans man, Nealy’s guide covers everything from family life to school and mental health issues, as well as the physical, social, and emotional aspects of transition.
6 Lee, Airton Gender: Your guide: A Gender- friendly primer on what to say and what to do in the new Gender culture 2018 From the differences among gender identity, gender expression, and sex, to the use of gender-neutral pronouns like singular they/them, to thinking about your own participation in gender, Gender: Your Guide serves as a complete primer to all things gender
7 Robertson, J. Brandon Gospel of Inclusion.  A Christian Case for LGBT+ Inclusion in the Church.
Pastor and public theologian Brandan Robertson offers a compelling assessment of the biblical texts, cultural context, and modern social movements to suggest that the entire thrust of the Christian gospel calls the church towards the deconstruction of all oppressive systems and structures and towards the creation of a world that celebrates the full spectrum of human diversity as a reflection of God's creative intention.
8 Bayly, Michael J. Creating Safe Environments For LGBT Students: A Catholic Schools Perspective 2007 The book offers step by step directions for a series of five staff training sessions. The sessions are designed to guide participants through recognizing the need for Safe Staff who can compassionately respond to LGBT youth (and all youth questioning their sexuality), defining the role of Safe Staff members, understanding the needs of LGBT youth, reconciling the LGBT reality with the teachings of the Catholic Church, and establishing safe environments in Catholic high schools. The guide includes spiritual readings, handouts, discussion topics, and role play scenarios for each session. It provides a much needed tool to help Catholic schools address the issue of sexuality and the needs of LGBT students within the Catholic educational system.” Education Review, March 2007
9 Sadowski, Michael Better Schools For LGBTQ
Students: Safe is not Enough 2013
While progress on LGBTQ issues in schools remains slow, in many parts of the country schools have begun making strides toward becoming safer, more welcoming places for LGBTQ students. Schools typically achieve this by revising antibullying policies and establishing GSAs (gay-straight student alliances). But it takes more than a deficit- based approach for schools to become places where LGBTQ students can fulfill their potential. In Safe Is Not Enough, Michael Sadowski highlights how educators can make their schools more supportive of LGBTQ students’ positive development and academic success” Amazon.
10 Shane, Kryss Educator’s Guide to LGBT+
Inclusion, 2020
Setting out best practices and professional guidance for creating LGBT+ inclusive learning in schools, this approachable and easy to follow book guides teachers, educators, administrators, and school staff toward appropriate and proven ways to create safer learning environments, update school policies, enhance curricula, and better support LGBT+ youth as they learn.
11 Savage, Dan and Miller, Terry It gets Better – Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying and Creating a Life Worth Living Growing up isn't easy. Many young people face daily tormenting and bullying, and this is especially true for LGBT kids and teens.
It Gets Better is a collection of original essays and expanded testimonials written to teens from celebrities, political leaders, and everyday people, because while many LGBT teens can't see a positive future for themselves, we can.” Amazon
12 Edited by Lee Finke Queerfully and wonderfully Made Queer youth still face a multitude of challenges while growing up, and these have the potential to be amplified by religious beliefs. Addressing that issue head-on, this guide for Christians seeks to provide counsel, understanding, and gentle guidance across a series of 40-plus chapters that address everything from coming out in a variety of contexts, positive ways to deal with haters, and helping start the conversation about gender-neutral bathrooms at school, to living authentically.
13 Alison, James Faith Beyond Resentment: Fragments Catholic and Gay Discrimination against gays and lesbians extends from the highest echelons of the Catholic Church to the pews. For James Alison, a gay Catholic theologian, the key to moving beyond resentment is a radical re-conversion to the gospel message of God’s love and understanding that even those in power are our brothers and sisters. (New York, NY: The Crossroad Publishing Company. 2001)
14 Beardsley, Christina and O’Brien, Michelle This is My Body: Hearing the Theology of Transgender Christians Much has been said and written about trans people by theologians and Church leaders, while little has been heard from trans Christians themselves. As a step towards redressing the balance, this book offers a grounded reflection on people's experience of gender dissonance that involves negotiating the boundaries between one's identity and religious faith, as well as a review of the most up-to-date theological, cultural and scientific literature. (London, UK: Darton Longman & Todd. 2016)
15 Helminiak, Daniel A., Ph.D. What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality Does God's word in the Bible really condemn homosexuality? A top scholar shows that those who perceive Bible passages as condemning homosexuality are being misled by faulty translation and poor interpretation. Danial A. Helminiak, Ph.D., a respected theologian and Roman Catholic priest, explains in a clear fashion the fascinating new insights of these scholars. (Tajique, NM: Alamo Square Press. 2000)
16 Godfrey, Donal, S.J. Gays and Grays; the Story of the Gay Community at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church Most Holy Redeemer was changed from a dying parish to a vital place where gay and straight people together created something new. Father Donal Godfrey shows how this parish became prophetic and compassionate, through conflict and compromise at times; despite opposition from many sources, including the institutionalized homophobia of the church and society. Rather than becoming embittered, the parish opened up to be a place of healing and indeed sanctuary for many. (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2007)
17 Gushee, David Changing Our Mind “Every generation has its hot-button issue,” writes David P. Gushee, “For us, it’s the LGBT issue.” In Changing Our Mind, Gushee takes the reader along his personal and theological journey as he changes his mind about gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender inclusion in the Church. (Canton, MI: David Crumm Media, 2014).
18 Johnson, Luke Timothy The Revelatory Body: Theology as Inductive Art Scripture points to the human body and lived experience as the preeminent arena of God's continuing revelation in the world, says Luke Timothy Johnson. Attentively discerning the manifestations of God's Spirit in and through the body is essential for theology to recover its nature as an inductive art rather than — as traditionally conceived — a deductive science. (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. 2015)
19 Kiely, Robert Blessed and Beautiful: Picturing the Saints This book offers a powerful and searching meditation on the lives of the saints and the images of them painted by Renaissance artists in Italy. Robert Kiely, a distinguished scholar of modernist literature and a historian and critic of exceptional sensibility, has a keen eye and uncanny ability to capture details of significance and to prompt the reader to look again and to see with fresh eyes that the lives of saints and the Renaissance depictions of them are anything but dull, uniform, or narrowly orthodox. His beautifully written and thoughtful book treats saints seriously as human religious figures (not icons of perfection), brought to life by great Italian paintings in dialogue with scripture, legend, and poetry. (New Haven, Connecticut: Yale University Press, 2010)
20 Martin, Colby UnClobber: Rethinking Our Misuse of the Bible on Homosexuality UnClobber reexamines what the Bible says (and does not say) about homosexuality in such a way that breathes fresh life into outdated and inaccurate assumptions and interpretations. (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2016)
21 Martin, James, S.J. Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT
Community Can Enter Into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity (Revised and Expanded)
Adapted from an address he gave to New Ways Ministry, a group that ministers to and advocates for LGBT Catholics, Building a Bridge provides a roadmap for repairing and strengthening the bonds that unite all of us as God's children. Martin uses the image of a two-way bridge to enable LGBT Catholics and the Church to come together in a call to end the "us" versus "them" mentality. Turning to the Catechism, he draws on the three criteria at the heart of the Christian ministry—"respect, compassion, and sensitivity"—as a model for how the Catholic Church should relate to the LGBT community. (New York, NY: HarperCollins.
22 Moore, Gareth A Question of Truth: Christianity and Homosexuality A Dominican priest challenges the teaching of the Catholic Church on its own grounds. He scrutinizes the Church’s arguments, which are based on both the Bible and natural law, and finds them wanting. (New York: Continuum, 2003)
23 Scott, Laurie Suzanne God Doesn't Make Mistakes; Confessions of a Transgender Christian Meet Laurie Suzanne Scott. She is, indeed, both an evangelical Christian and transgender. Raised in a devoutly Christian home, she endured the unbelievably difficult and complicated odyssey of finding her identity as a woman …without losing her identity in Christ. A journey she barely survived. In her book, Laurie tells her story of growing up playing a role as unnatural to her as the body she was born with. (Austin:Tek-Chic Systems, 2018)
24 Chu, Jeff Does Jesus Really Love Me?: A Gay Christian's Pilgrimage in Search of God in America This book is part memoir and part investigative analysis that explores the explosive and confusing intersection of faith, politics, and sexuality in Christian America. The quest to find an answer is at the heart of Does Jesus Really Love Me?—a personal journey of belief, an investigation, and a portrait of a faith and a nation at odds by award-winning reporter Jeff Chu. From Brooklyn to Nashville to California, from Westboro Baptist Church and their “God Hates Fags” protest signs, to the pioneering Episcopalian bishop Mary Glasspool—who proclaims a message of liberation and divine love, Chu captures spiritual snapshots of Christian America at a remarkable moment, when tensions between both sides in the culture wars have rarely been higher. (New York, NY: HarperCollins Publishers. 2014)
25 Edman, Elizabeth Queer Virtue: What LGBTQ People Know About Life and Love and How It Can Revitalize Christianity In Queer Virtue, Edman posits that Christianity, at its scriptural core, incessantly challenges its adherents to rupture false binaries, to “queer” lines that pit people against one another. Thus, Edman asserts that Christianity, far from being hostile to queer people, is itself inherently queer. Arguing from the heart of scripture, she reveals how queering Christianity—that is, disrupting simplistic ways of thinking about self and other—can illuminate contemporary Christian faith. Pushing well past the notion that “Christian love = tolerance,” Edman offers a bold alternative: the recognition that queer people can help Christians better understand their fundamental calling and the creation of sacred space where LGBTQ Christians are seen as gifts to the church. (Boston, MA: Beacon Press. 2016)
26 McNeill, John J. Both Feet Firmly Planted in Midair: My Spiritual Journey With the publication of his groundbreaking The Church and the Homosexual in 1976, John McNeill placed himself in the vanguard of scholars who were challenging long-held assumptions about the Bible and homosexuality. Through his continued scholarship, spiritual reflection, and untiring activism, McNeill has brought hope and affirmation to thousands of gay and lesbian Christians. Both Feet Firmly Planted in Midair is McNeill's autobiography. (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press. 1998)
27 McNeill, John J. Freedom, Glorious Freedom Freedom, Glorious Freedom is the third volume in John McNeill's landmark trilogy on gay and lesbian spirituality. It deals with the presence of the Spirit of God, the Spirit of love in our daily experiences, and how to arrive at the glorious freedom of the children of God. McNeill shows how lesbian and gay Christians can achieve full spiritual maturity and self-acceptance. McNeill discusses freedom of conscience and discernment of spirits, ancient teachings of the Christian church that have a special urgency for lesbian and gay people who need to free themselves from all the homophobic authorities and deal with God on a direct and personal basis. The liberating process of coming out of the closet is seen as a spirit-filled effort to achieve the glory of God by becoming fully alive. McNeill offers a twelve-step spirituality as a spiritual process of liberation from all addictions in order to experience the love of God in its fullness. The epilogue expresses in detail a philosophical vision, looking both to the past and to the future, of how gay liberation fits into the Spirit-directed evolution of human history and its role in the ongoing struggle for human liberation. (Boston, MA: Beacon Press.
28 McNeill, John J. Sex as God Intended: A Reflection on Human Sexuality as Play Noted biblical scholar John McNeill offers further insight into the role of sex in the Bible and how the original viewpoints by Church Fathers has been twisted by the Catholic Church over the years. This book also offers a series of essays by current scholars in honor of McNeill. (Maple Shade, NJ: Lethe Press. 2008)
29 McNeill, John J. Taking a Chance on God: Liberating Theology for Gays, Lesbians, and Their Lovers, Families, and Friends Taking a Chance on God explores how lesbians and gay men can claim both a positive gay identity and a fulfilling life of Christian faith. (Boston, MA: Beacon Press. 1988)
30 McNeill, John J. The Church and the Homosexual, 4th Edition In this "brave and good book which shatters bad myths" (Commonweal), McNeill shows that the Bible does not condemn homosexuality, and argues that the Church must not continue its homophobic practices. (Boston, MA: Beacon Press. 1976)
31 Corvino, John What’s Wrong with Homosexuality? For over the last twenty years, John Corvino—widely known as the author of the weekly column "The Gay Moralist"—has traversed the country responding to moral and religious arguments against same-sex relationships. In this timely book, he shares that experience—addressing the standard objections to homosexuality and offering insight into the culture wars more generally. (Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2013)
32 Fortunate Families The book is an excellent resource that "Explores the lived experience of Catholic parents who love their gay children and their Church" that "includes illuminating stories, survey results, and a discussion of church documents." (Tatford Publishing, 2006)
33 Listen to Your Heart: A Daily Devotional of Calling, Purpose and New Life Listen to Your Heart is a devotional that includes daily Bible verses and reflections to help readers find calling and purpose in their lives. The content comes directly from the author's own journey through pain, misery and despair to new life. This book will give you a daily dose of inspiration to help carry you through your struggle to transformation and wholeness. Each reflection also suggests a "song of the day" written and recorded by the author, which will further enhance your healing experience. (Bill Tonnis, 2020)
34 Family Acceptance Project – San Francisco State University
35 Harman, B.T.
36 Karslake, Daniel G. - Director and Producer
37 Karslake, Daniel G. - Director and Producer
38 Martin S.J., Fr. James
39 Q Christian Fellowship
40 Rick, Barbara
41 Schutz, Susan Polis
42 Sharma, Parvez
43 St. Mary’s College Notre Dame, IN McMahon Aquinas Chair
44 in Philosophy, the Department of Philosophy, the Department of Gender and Women's Studies, and the Campus Compact Fund for Positive Engagement
45 St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church, New York City
46 Walton, Greg
47 WomanVision
48 Children’s Books and Resources
49 Cooper, Scott
50 Parnell, Peter and Richardson, Justin
51 Daniel Errico and Shiloh Penfield
52 Daniel Haack and Stevie Lewis
53 Christine Baldacchino (Author) Isabelle Malenfant (Illustrator)
54 Stacy B. Davids
55 Jessica Love
56 Theresa Thorn
57 Bao Phi and Basia Tran
58 Miriam B. Schiffer and Holly Clifton- Brown
59 Meryl G Gordon (Author) Holly Clifton- Brown (Illustrator)
60 Jessie Sima (Author)
61 Robb Pearlman (Author) Eda Kaban (Illustrator)
62 Lise Frances
63 A.J. Sass
64 Lindsey Stoddard
65 Leslie Connor
66 Leslea Newman (Author) Carol Thompson (Illustrator)
67 Rafael Lopez
68 Terry Miller (Editor) Dan Savage (Editor)
69 Corinne A. Grinapol (Author) Who Hq (Author) Gregory Copeland (Illustrator)
70 Interfaith Voices
71 Corinne A. Grinapol (Author) Who Hq (Author) Gregory Copeland (Illustrator) Who Was Harvey Milk?
72 Interfaith Voices
73 Jesuit, Institute, South Africa, Expanding, Horizons, series
79 O’Loughlin, Michael
America:The Jesuit Review
80 “On Being” with Krista Tippett
81 Vine and Fig
83 Canales, Art (2016)
84 Canales, Arthur D.
85 Derouen, Luisa and Gramick, Jeannine
86 Dever, Deacon Ray
87 Martin, James,S.J.
88 Massingale, Bryan
89 Parodi-Brown, Joseph. A. (2019)
90 St. Amand, Colt and
92 Beloved Arise
93 Vine and Fig Collective
95 American Psychological Association
96 American Psychological Association
98 Psalm 139:
King David
99 Micah 6: 6-8 Micah
100 1 John 4:16-
St. John
101 Romans 8:38-
St. Paul
102 Romans 13:10
103 1 Corinthians 13
104 Galatians 5: 22-23
105 1 Peter 4:8 St. Peter
Book Author Title Synopsis

Resources and Website Links

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOUR SON OR DAUGHTER COMES OUT – A GUIDE FOR PARENTS  — Some advice from Kathy Godwin, board vice president for the organization PFLAG, which supports the LGBT community and helps to educate parents, families and friends.

(these are links, click on them to go to the doc)

Fr, James Martin, SJ, writes about building a bridge between the Church and the LGBT+ community in America Magazine. 

Chicago’s Cardinal Blase  Cupich – “dialogue is not a dirty word, it is OUR word!”  Cupich said he also has invited LGBT Catholics to come talk with him as part of his own desire for dialogue.

USCCB “Always Our Children.”



Pastor decides that young gay couple tragically killed would have joint funeral Mass in parish church. Diocese stands by the pastoral decision. 

Cardinal Cupich: Pope Francis’ ‘field hospital’ calls us to radically rethink church life


Always My Child: A Parent’s Guide to Understanding Your Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered or Questioning Son or Daughter by Kevin Jennings. [NY: Skylight Press, 2003]. Updated, good, general book for parents.

Are There Closets in Heaven? A Catholic Father and Lesbian Daughter Share Their Story.  Carol Curoe and Robert Curoe. [Syren Book Co., Minneapolis, MN, 2007]. “… testimony to the power faith and love can play in bringing families together.”

Coming Out to Parents: A Two-Way Survival Guide for Lesbian Women and Gay Men and Their Parents. Mary Borhek [Cleveland: Pilgrim Press, 1993]. Not specifically geared to Catholics, but may be the best of the general books for parents.

Creating Safe Environments for LGBT Student: A Catholic School Perspective. Michael J. Bayly. [Binghamton, NY: Harrington Park Press, 2007]. How to train the staff of your Catholic high school to meet the special needs of LGBT students.

Fortunate Families: Catholic Families with Lesbian Daughters and Gay Sons. Mary Ellen Lopata. [Victoria, BC: Trafford Publishing, 2003]. Specifically related to Catholic families, with stories and a full chapter on pertinent church teaching.

Setting the Table: Preparing Catholic Parishes to Welcome Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People and Their Families. James A. Schexnayder . “… offers helpful suggestions … on how the Church … may engage and integrate LGBT persons into the life and ministries of the Church.” Most Rev. Joseph M. Sullivan.

Sexual Ethics: A Theological Introduction. Todd A. Salzman and Michael G. Lawler [Washington DC: Georgetown University Press, 2012]. “… a Catholic book on sexual morality that ‘people in the pews’ and ‘my students’ can understand … and therefore more enlightening on common questions about sexual morality as they arise for Catholics in the contemporary world.”

Sexual Diversity and Catholicism. Edited by Patricia Beattie Jung, with Joseph Andrew Coray [Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 2001]. Essays exploring relationship between contemporary biblical scholarship and Roman Catholic magisterial teachings about the morality of homosexuality.

This Remarkable Gift–Being Gay and Catholic.  Maurice Shinnick [St. Leonard’s, Australia: Allen and Unwin, 1997]. Written by a priest, combines real-life stories and experience. Considered, prayerful, faithful analysis of Church teaching, especially in light of Vatican II.

What the Bible Really Says About Homosexuality: Millennium Edition Updated and Expanded. Daniel A. Helminiak [New Mexico: Alamo Square Press, 2000]. Concise, readable book solidly based on modern biblical scholarship. His conclusion: “If people would still seek to know outright if gay or lesbian sex is good or evil…they will have to look somewhere else for an answer.”

NB-— Fortunate Families provides this list but cannot endorse these or any books. We stand by Catholic Social Teaching about the dignity of the human person and the Gospel mandate to work together for the common good.