This introductory chapter sets out the book’s main themes. This book represents an effort to memorialize and broaden the discussions begun in the scholarly presentations from a previous volume that comprised one focus of the “More than a Monologue” series of conferences held in the fall of 2011. The conferences were meant to represent more than the most often heard monologic voice, that of the institutional church, on the subject of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) issues and persons both within and outside of the church. In the first volume, subtitled Voices of Our Times, contributors reflected on their personal and professional experiences of Catholic responses to and engagements with sexual diversity. This volume continues the conversation by bringing together academic writings by theologians, ethicists, legal scholars, literary critics, and advocates. The chapter also reviews the historical development of official Catholic statements about LGBTQ issues as well as the development of theological responses to those teachings.
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