This September 2021, the University of Notre Dame Press will publish Gay, Catholic, and American: My Legal Battle for Marriage Equality and Inclusion by Greg Bourke. For a limited time, we are giving away a limited number of SIGNED advance copies! Enter to win by filling out the form at the bottom of this post. This offer expires May 21st and is limited to US residents.
Can’t wait to start reading? Reviewers, bookstore employees, librarians, and other members of the book industry can request an e-galley through Edelweiss here. We encourage you to leave a review if you enjoyed the book.
“Recounting confrontations with the Catholic Church to the Boy Scouts and then fighting the State of Kentucky all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States, Gay, Catholic, and American is the powerful story of a man and his family fighting tirelessly for positive change rooted in their belief in the fullness of charity.”—Jim Obergefell, co-author of Love Wins
In this compelling and deeply affecting memoir, Greg Bourke recounts growing up in Louisville, Kentucky, and living as a gay Catholic. The book describes Bourke’s early struggles for acceptance as an out gay man living in the South during the 1980s and ’90s, his unplanned transformation into an outspoken gay rights activist after being dismissed as a troop leader from the Boy Scouts of America in 2012, and his historic role as one of the named defendants in the landmark United States Supreme Court decision Obergefell vs. Hodges, which legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015. After being ousted by the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), former Scoutmaster Bourke became a leader in the movement to amend antigay BSA membership policies. The Archdiocese of Louisville, because of its vigorous opposition to marriage equality, blocked Bourke’s return to leadership despite his impeccable long-term record as a distinguished boy scout leader. But while making their home in Louisville, Bourke and his husband Michael De Leon have been active members at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church for more than three decades, and their family includes two adopted children who attended Lourdes school and were brought up in the faith. Over many years and challenges, this couple has managed to navigate the choppy waters of being openly gay while integrating into the fabric of their parish life community. Bourke is unapologetically Catholic, and his faith provides the framework for this inspiring story of how the Bourke De Leon family struggled to overcome antigay discrimination by both the BSA and the Catholic Church and fought to legalize same-sex marriage across the country.
Greg Bourke has had a long corporate career in information technology and management. He currently works as a health economist. Bourke and his husband Michael De Leon were named 2015 Persons of the Year by the National Catholic Reporter and have been active in establishing LGBTQ alumni networks at the University of Notre Dame, University of Louisville, University of Kentucky, and other organizations.
“Greg Bourke’s story is one of perseverance and tenacity, of refusing to settle for less and daring to dream big. LGBT Catholics and those who desire more welcoming institutions will be encouraged and inspired by reading this book.”—Michael J. O’Loughlin, national correspondent for America: The Jesuit Review