INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A rally for equality was held outside the Archdiocese of Indianapolis on Saturday afternoon.
About 100 people showed up to the rally, which was organized by Shelly’s Voice, a student-run advocacy group formed after Roncalli High School suspended counselor Shelly Fitzgerald for her same-sex marriage.
Fitzgerald said, as of May, she is no longer an employee of Roncalli. After finding out about Fitzgerald’s marriage, the archdiocese determined she was in breach of her contract.
People at Saturday’s rally held signs that said “Love is love” and “Thank you, Brebeuf.”
Many speakers took part in the rally that aimed to promote growth within the Catholic Church and spread a message of acceptance.
“It makes me really sad that there continues to be division within the Catholic Church and we want to continue helping bridge that gap through love and action and hope that others will follow our lead,” Fitzgerald said Saturday.
The Archdiocese of Indianapolis released the following statement on the rally:
The Catholic Church and the Archdiocese of Indianapolis welcome and accept all individuals, regardless of sexual orientation. Each of us is created in the image and likeness of God, and we respect and uphold the dignity of all our sisters and brothers.
Catholic schools are integral to the mission of the Church to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ and to be places of learning where students encounter the living Christ. We welcome and are grateful to serve all students who attend our schools.
All teachers, guidance counselors and administrators who serve in Catholic schools are ministers of the faith. It is their duty to communicate the fullness of Catholic teaching to students, both by word and action inside and outside the classroom, and to ensure that students receive instruction in Catholic doctrine and practice. It is a privilege, not a right, to serve in this ministerial position. To effectively bear witness to Christ, whether they teach religion or not, all ministers in their professional and private lives must convey and be supportive of Catholic Church teaching.
We continue to pray that everyone will respect and defend the dignity of all persons, as well as the freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment for citizens and institutions to exercise their religious beliefs.