Candidates for Dignity/Washington Board of Directors

April 23, 2015 by  
Filed under News Archive

Dignity/Washington has six candidates running for open seats on the chapter’s Board of Directors. Please see the candidates photos and a brief statement from each below. You must be a member of Dignity/Washington in order to vote. The vote will be on Sunday, May 10.

Dan B
Daniel Barutta, Chapter President
With great appreciation for all the wonderful support Dignity/Washington members have given me during my three years as Chapter President, I humbly ask for your support for a fourth term as your President.
You all have helped me grow by leaps and bounds in my Catholic faith and have helped expand my leadership skills. In return I would greatly enjoy showing my gratitude by focusing on these three major areas: expanding our diversity efforts, ensuring the upkeep and renovation of our wonderful Dignity Center and working on improving our community infrastructure as a non-profit organization.
As for my qualifications for the position, an old song comes to mind with the lyrics: “if you don’t know me by now….”. Seriously for those of you new to the community please don’t hesitate to speak with at mass or whenever you see me.
Again, Thank You all so much – I have been truly blessed to be your President!


Tom Bower
Tom Bower
I have been a member of Dignity/Washington since 1977, was on the board during the early years of the organization and rejoined the board ten years ago. I have served as Secretary, Vice President, helped organize Anniversary dinners, and am a lector, Eucharistic Minister, and member of the Liturgy Committee. My continuing thought on rejoining the board was that I would offer historical observations to current plans, not as a statement of this is what we have done, but as insights that could help instruct current opportunities. We are now more forward looking than at any time in the past and that is a good thing.

Several years ago the D/W board decided to put our future in the hands of the Holy Spirit and place renewing the community physically and fiscally as our primary goal. By the grace of God and a generous unafraid membership we have put ourselves in a sound financial position and are now attracting new, younger, and more diverse individuals (sexual and racial minorities) to our services and organizational processes. A good idea and enthusiasm are the needed credentials for activities and leadership, not just experience which is used as leavening to provide structure for growth. There is still much to do for us to be seen as a force for good by the Church hierarchy and for us to be a valued voice for Christ’s teachings by the LGBT community, but, with your vote, I will continue to work as hard as possible to make both of those goals reality.


Jake H
Jake Hudson
It has been an honor and a pleasure to serve on the Dignity/Washington board of directors. I continue to be enriched by the activities of the community and the work of many devoted people. The past year has seen much work to reaching out to women, youth, and people of color and I hope to continue those efforts. I will also continue in my role as treasurer to maintain the sound fiscal policies that have served the community well.


Dave Lamdin head shot
David Lamdin
I have been a member of Dignity Washington and Dignity USA since 1975. I have also been a member of Dignity Northern Virginia since its founding in 1992. I have served as the Treasurer of D/NoVA since 2006, and I have been the DW Bookkeeper since 2011. I have been on the DW Liturgy Committee and in charge of scheduling the presiders and other ministers for many years. I am pleased to have the opportunity to offer my services to my DW faith community.


Jim S Oct 2013
James Sweeney
1) Dignity Washington has unique opportunities in 2015 to be a voice on GLBT issues in the American Catholic Church. There will be a papal visit to DC and Philadelphia in September, a worldwide Synod on the Family in Rome in October and an annual gathering of all American Catholic bishops in Baltimore in November. As the largest local chapter in the USA located at the center of the action, we at Dignity Washington should engage the American Catholic bishops this year on both a local and national level. Our first goal should the elimination of “inherently disordered”.

2) We should develop new programs to address the changing spiritual and material needs of the numerous aging members of our congregation

3) We have done an impressive job of attracting younger men and have given them opportunities to develop leadership and organizational skills. Many of these young men relocate out of DC and will carry these skills to other local chapters of Dignity and perhaps even found new ones. We should continue to develop and encourage these young men; they are the future.

4) Our efforts to encourage the participation of women in Dignity Washington have not been as fruitful and remain the great weakness of our congregation. We should redouble our efforts to recruit female participation and offer women the same opportunities to develop their leadership and organizational skills that we offer to young men.


KTH photo
Kevin Hennessy
Mark and I have been Dignity Washington members since 1998. I have had the privilege of serving on the Board for two terms already, including as Treasurer during the second term. I currently serve as a lector. I look forward to re-joining the Board and serving in a more in-depth manner again.

Dignity Celebrates Paschal Triduum with Solemnity and Joy

Holy Thursday

Dignity Washington celebrated an ecumenical service with St. Margaret’s Episcopal church. Fr. Jeff co-celebrated Eucharist with Rev. Kym Lucas, Rector of St. Margaret’s Church. The liturgy began with a wonderful agape meal prepared by St. Margaret’s parishioners. The guests were treated to unleavened bread, hummus, Lamb stew and vegetarian kale and potato soup. The liturgy featured the washing of feet and ended with a procession of the Blessed Sacrament to the alter of repose in the side chapel. Parishioners from both St. Margaret’s and Dignity kept a vigil throughout the night.
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Good Friday

The Church paused to commemorate the Lord Jesus’ supreme sacrifice on the Cross with rites that are both ancient and ever new. The Service, co-led by Jake Hudson of Dignity/Washington and Monika Ruppert of Dignity/Northern Virginia, was highlighted by The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ: A Narrative in Nine Voices, written and directed by Silvio Menzano Weisner, that stirred our minds and hearts and prepared us for compassionate Prayers of the Faithful for believers and unbelievers, for church and civil authorities, and for all the downtrodden and suffering.

Then, the Cross, draped in red cloth, that Roman implement of capital punishment, was carried in our midst and elevated in honor. All were invited to approach it, with profound gratitude and humility, and to venerate it as the implement of our redemption through Jesus’ blood.

Communion was served and the Service concluded in silence as the Blessed Sacrament was carried in procession to the side Altar of Repose for adoration and continual prayer until the dawn. Thus ended the first full day of the Sacred Three Days that had begun the evening of Holy Thursday and would conclude on Easter morning.


Easter Vigil

Dignity/Washington met for the Great Vigil of Easter at the Universalist Church at 16th & S streets. The beautiful, romanesque sanctuary was darkened for the Liturgy of the Word, except for the light of the Pascal candle and individual vigil candles.

The Liturgy of the Word featured seven readings from the Hebrew scripture and the New Testament, and each reading was followed by a Psalm. The many talents of Dignity/Washington’s choir made the vigil a solemn and sacred liturgy. Our Dignity chapter is truly blessed with many talented musicians and vocalists; their music made the Easter Vigil a night that everyone who attended will remember.

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Easter Day

The Easter day liturgy was a fitting end to a beautiful spring day, which as the celebrant said in his homily, “reeked of resurrection”. The church was beautifully decorated with spring flowers. The liturgy included Fr. Jeff’s innovative homily that interspersed verses from the hymn “Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?” with reflections and the death and resurrection of Jesus.

During the liturgy, the congregation renewed the vows of Baptism and was sprinkled with holy water. It was a fitting end to an eventful Easter Triduum. Many thanks to the Liturgy Committee, choir, celebrants, and all who helped Dignity/Washington celebrate the Easter season.


Gay Passion of Christ Envisioned in Art

March 29, 2015 by  
Filed under News Archive


Kittredge Cherry writes about her new book “The Passion of Christ: a Gay Vision” which is based on the controversial paintings of New York artist Doug Blanchard in the HuffingtonPost. Blanchard re-imagines Christ’s passion set in the 21st century with Jesus as a Gay man. Cherry, a Lesbian Christian author and art historian, writes that:

“LGBT Christian visions are important now because conservatives are using religion to justify discrimination against queer people. Whenever anyone commits violence against another, Christ is crucified again — including when LGBT people are attacked or killed because of who they are”.

Follow the link below to view more of Doug Blanchard’s paintings and to read the whole article.

The Gay Passion of Christ Envisioned and Attacked

Holy Week Schedule

Stations of the Cross

Stations of the Cross at the Franciscan Monastery

See list below for Dignity/Washington services during Holy Week 2015. We welcome all who share and respect our beliefs in the sacramental nature of the Eucharist to participate fully in Holy Communion.

If you plan to attend any Dignity/Washington event and require accommodations, such as an ASL interpreter, please contact at least one week in advance.

Check out Dignity/Washington’s Holy Week events on Facebook. Go to
D/W Holy Week Events on Facebook

Date Liturgy Time  Location More Information
Mar 28 Stations of the Cross 10:45 AM Franciscan Monastery 1400 Quincy St, NE Washington DC (10 minute walk from Brookland Metro station)
Mar 29 Palm Sunday 6:00 PM St. Margaret’s Church Eucharist with blessing of the palms
Apr 1 Tenebrae 7:30 PM St. Matthew’s Cathedral Dignity/Washington visits St. Matthew Cathedral for Tenebrae
Apr 2 Holy Thursday Agape Meal & Liturgy 6:30 PM St. Margaret’s Church Ecumenical Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper followed by adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in the side chapel
Apr 3 Good Friday 7:30 PM St. Margaret’s Church Liturgy of the Lord’s passion with veneration of the cross
Apr 4 Easter Vigil 8:00 PM Universalist Memorial Church 1810 16th St NW Washington DC
Apr  5 Easter Sunday 6:00 PM St. Margaret’s Church  Easter Sunday Mass

Tuesday Simple Suppers During Lent

February 27, 2015 by  
Filed under Events, News Archive


Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of Faith
Join us every Tuesday during Lent beginning February 24th
6:30-9:00 PM at the Dignity Center 721 8th Street, SE, Washington, DC

Session I (2/24): Amazed and Afraid. The revelation of God becoming human.

Session II (3/3): Happy are We. The Teachings of Jesus

Session III (3/10): Our tainted nature’s solitary boast: Mary, the mother of God

Session IV (3/17): A body both suffering and glorious. The mystical union of Christ and the Church

Session V (3/24): Word made flesh, true bread of heaven. The mystery of the liturgy and the Eucharist

Session VI (3/31): World without end. The Last Things

Confessions of a Gay Jesuit


The article below is the story of how a brave Gay man committed himself to service in the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) and encountered many other closeted Gay men within the Jesuit order. A similar article appeared in the Washington Post, but this article tells his first hand account of the spiritual journey of an LGBT Christian and his struggle to live an integrated, authentic life.

Confessions of a Gay Jesuit

Dignity/Washington Featured in The Advocate

January 15, 2015 by  
Filed under News Archive

Dignity/Washington was featured prominently in an article in The Advocate on the “Queerest Cities in America”. Washington DC came in at number 14 on the list.

Check out the complete list here:

Queerest Cities in America


Dignity/Washington's 2014 Capital Pride marchers

Dignity/Washington’s 2014 Capital Pride marchers end the parade energized and ready for more

Part-Time Bookkeeper Wanted

January 15, 2015 by  
Filed under News Archive

Dignity/Washington is searching for a part-time bookkeeper to work with the treasurer to ensure smooth financial operations for the organization. The successful candidate for this position should have a solid foundation in bookkeeping and accounting and a good working knowledge of electronic banking and QuickBooks, the accounting software Dignity/Washington uses.

The position is estimated at between 7 and 10 hours of work a week and can be done primarily from home. For more information, click the link below for a complete job description or contact Jake Hudson (treasurer) at the Dignity Center 202-546-2235.

Interested candidates should submit resume and letter of interest to by February 6, 2015.

Bookkeeper Job description

Advent Calendar 2014

December 17, 2014 by  
Filed under News Archive

Online Advent Calendar gives inspiration throughout the season of Advent.

Online Advent Calendar



Fr. Jim Smith on Catholic Worker Justice Nov. 15



On Saturday November 15 Father Jim Smith will present on Catholic Worker Justice– a look at the recent firings of LGBT Catholic teachers, organists, and administrators, and the new homophobic contracts that are now mandatory for job renewal in Catholic schools and parishes.

The presentation will take place at 3:00 pm at the Dignity Center, 721 – 8th St SE, Washington, DC 20003. The presentation, sponsored by Dignity/Washington, is free and open to the public. Feel free to invite friends and allies. Refreshments will follow the presentation.

Fr. Jim Smith has served Catholic parishes as priest or retreat and spiritual director for over 20 years. He is currently a consultant for parish-wide visioning and life-long formation planning, as well as Dignity/USA’s Associate Director.

Fr. Smith is also the author of Welcome the People: Ways to Gather & Nourish Adult Catholics (Twenty-Third Publications), and presenter of many spiritual reflection videos available through

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