The following comes from an Oct. 29 story on Catholic World News.

Bridging Refugee Youth and Children’s Services, a project of the United Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Migration and Refugee Services, has updated and expanded its training to workers in federally-funded refugee resettlement programs, in part to “address the needs of particularly vulnerable groups of children, including youth who may be gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered.”

The training is intended for those who work with youth in the custody of the US Department of Health and Human Services’ office of refugee resettlement / division of children’s services. The revised Tier One Training Manual – copyrighted by the United Conference of Catholic Bishops, and published with the assistance of a Department of Health and Human Services grant – notes that “it is important to be alert for homophobic remarks among the staff. If any are made, discuss in a non-judgmental way how these kinds of remarks may make a young gay resident feel.” If a “boy teases another boy, saying that he is gay, standing too close to him, and so forth, it would be a form of sexual harassment.”

“Exploring Complexities” – the new Tier Two Training Manual, also copyrighted by the United Conference of Catholic Bishops, and published with the assistance of a Department of Health and Human Services grant – presents a scenario in which two male minors are “rubbing each other with their feet on the other’s genital areas.” The training advises:

After allowing the staff to discuss this, you can suggest that the young men should learn not to engage in sexual contact in the residence, and they should develop a stronger sense of sexual boundaries – to keep sexual activities private, even after leaving the residence

You can mention that young people engage in sexual behaviors for all kinds of reasons, including to relieve tension or boredom, for the thrill of breaking rules and doing something prohibited, because they are lonely and want to connect with another person and sexual activity is one way to establish a connection, and simply because they are easily stimulated at that age.

In another scenario, three young men have reported that another minor male resident has been exposing himself to them on different occasions. The training advises:

Presuming these reports are true, why would Telmo engage in these kinds of behaviors? It is possible that he has simply never been taught appropriate sexual boundaries … While Telmo needs to understand that he should not expose himself to others and should keep from touching other residents inappropriately, he should not be shamed or humiliated for his actions. If Telmo continues to engage in these kinds of behaviors he may need to be transferred to a more restrictive setting.

The Bridging Refugee manual makes no reference to moral law or the practice of virtue.

To read the entire story, click here.


The following was sent to Cal Catholic by a reader on Oct. 29:

Committee on Migration members – notice that Archbishop Gomez, Bishop Vann and Ken Hackett (the new ambassador to the Vatican) are on the list.

Most Reverend José H. Gomez
Most Reverend Gustavo Garcia-Siller
Most Reverend Thomas Wenski
Most Reverend Kevin Vann
Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio
Most Reverend Anthony Taylor
Most Reverend John Manz
Most Reverend Luis Zarama
Most Reverend Eduardo Nevares
His Eminence Roger Cardinal Mahony
His Eminence Theodore Cardinal McCarrick
His Eminence Sean O’Malley, OFM Cap
His Eminence Cardinal Justin Rigali
Most Reverend Martin Holley
Most Reverend John Wester
Most Reverend James Tamayo
Most Reverend Ricardo Ramirez
Most Reverend Daniel Flores
Most Reverend Richard Garcia
Rev. Daniel G. Groody, C.S.C.
Mr. Loc Nguyen, Director
Sister Raymonda Duvall
Sister Gaye Moorhead
Mr. Allen Sanchez
Mr. Ken Hackett
Ms. Maria Odom