The Catholic Church is still silent on gender identity issues. It’s left trans Catholics in limbo.

by Eloise Blondiau
March 11, 2019


He converted to Catholicism eight years ago and chose the confirmation name Thomas, after the English saint Thomas More, who died for the unity of the Catholic Church. He is the kind of person who meets a priest for coffee and within 10 minutes is asked if he has considered becoming a priest. At age 34, he has multiple degrees in theology, works for a church-run nonprofit, and hands out Communion every Sunday at his parish.

Still, Thomas said he does not think he will enter the priesthood anytime soon. “It’s been heartbreak after heartbreak,” he said.

Thomas is transgender, which rules him out of consideration for the priesthood. He works for a Catholic employer who does not know his gender identity, so to protect his job, he asked to be identified in this story only as Thomas, the name he chose when he completed the Catholic rite of confirmation, which all Catholics take to mark their commitment to the faith as adults.

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