Rainbow Sash Movement

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Rainbow Sash Movement Logo.jpg

The Rainbow Sash Movement refers to two organizations created by and advanced by practicing gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Catholics who believe they should be able to receive Holy Communion.[1][2][3]

The leaders of the US movement founded by Joe Murray must be Roman Catholic while the Australian movement are ecumenical about it.[citation needed] The two movements are completely separate from each other but share the same vision.

The Rainbow Sash itself is a strip of a rainbow colored fabric which is worn over the left shoulder and is put on at the beginning of the Liturgy. The members go up to receive Eucharist.[4] If denied, they go back to pews and remain standing,[3] but if the Eucharist is received then they go back to the pew and kneel in the traditional way.[5]

As Archbishop of Melbourne, and later as Archbishop of Sydney, George Pell attracted some attention in 2002 for refusing Holy Communion to self-declared practising gays.[3][6] Activists have appeared on Pentecost Sunday at St Patrick's Cathedral, Melbourne and St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney wearing rainbow sashes and requesting communion. Pell has consistently and steadfastly refused them communion, offering blessings which are usually refused.[7]

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