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Let's open the hearts and minds of Polish Catholics together.
Sign of Peace A Project of K | KBFUS Funds
Support the Sign of Peace campaign - thanks to your donation KPH will organize meetings with Catholic communities in rural towns around Poland and change the hearts and minds of the society as it's very core.
Poland has a population of 38 000 000 people. Almost 35 000 000 people in Poland are Catholic. And so far the Catholic values of love, support and respect have not been voiced in support of LGBTI individuals. One in three LGBTI people experienced physical abuse or violence, one in two psychological abuse, threats or blackmail.
"My adolescence was a period when I (...) fell madly in love. This kind of youthful fascination with a person, on the
amplitude of life and death. (...) And I remember this one confession when I confided in the priest about my love. And I
remember what the priest responded with. He said that: if your eye, your hand, cause you to fall into sin, gouge out your eye, cut off your hand, because it is better to enter the Kingdom of Heaven crippled than to lose your life. I took it very seriously then. (...) And like some people get tattoos to remember about some things, I have other kinds of marks from my adolescence, because I took those words of that priest very literally. That physical pain was easier to bear than the psychological pain I felt at that time." - Anna Strzałkowska, Gdańsk.
In 2016, KPH, Tolerado Association and the Group of Polish LGBT Christians Faith and Rainbow launched the "Sign of Peace" - a nation-wide campaign under the patronage of the largest Catholic media outlets.
Two hand in a handshake, one with a rainbow bracelet, one with a rosary around the wrist, became the symbol of the Sign of Peace. Large scale posters filled the streets of 10 major cities and the voices of Catholic, straight cisgender allies have been heard for the first time in history.
"It is a very flat understanding of love when someone thinks that its only objective is to procreate. The purpose of love is loving (...) That's how he [Karol Wojtyła, later Pope John Paul II] understood love. My own conclusion is that, regardless of issues of identity or sexuality, if there is love between people, (...) such love is real and needs to be expressed, also expressed physically. Sexuality is what makes the expression of love authentic." - says Halina Bortnowska, a student and friend of Pope John Paul II.
The voices of lay Catholic authorities have moved the hearts and minds of Catholic people. Media monitoring data proves that the Sign of Peace had media visibility worth 2,2 mln USD allowing for at least 30 000 000 contacts with the campaign. The issue of looking at LGBTI people through the perspective of Catholic love, support and respect was discussed in workplaces, schools, public transport and households. And brought us a few steps closer to opening up the society to diversity.
"I want [LGBT] people to know that there people inside the Church who - accept is too weak of a word - who feel deep approval and respect for their lives. There is not enough of that. I want more of that. I want it to be clear." - says Natalia de Barbaro, psychologist and poet.
Now we wish to take it even further. We want to bring our Catholic allies to towns in rural Poland and start a heartfelt conversation with the local communities in places where mainstream media don't reach. We will change Poland at it's core. We will change the understanding of the Catholic faith through it's roots.
Donate today to see real change happen.