Our History

D/NoVA is a chapter in the national organization DignityUSA and supports the DignityUSA’s vision statement; but D/NoVA is a completely separate organization independently incorporated under the laws of the Commonwealth of Virginia and retains the option to surrender in writing its DignityUSA chapter charter at any time and for any reason without any effect on the D/NoVA organization or its Bylaws.
Since receiving its charter in 1992, D/NoVA has sponsored a weekly Saturday evening mass in the Roman Catholic tradition for the local GLBT community of Northern Virginia at Immanuel Church-on-the-Hill in Alexandria, Virginia. As D/NoVA celebrates over 20 years of service to the GLBT community of Northern Virginia, it is unfortunate to note that the past 20 years have seen the Roman Catholic Church increasingly alienate its GLBT members, silence its critics inside the Church, and aggressively attack those outside the Church with opinions different from its own. In 2006, while D/NoVA joined many, many other enlightened religious leaders and congregations throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia in supporting Equality Virginia's efforts to defeat the amendment to the Virginia Constitution to ban gay marriages, the Bishops of Arlington and Richmond actively supported passage of the amendment.

D/NoVA takes pride in and celebrates its successful efforts towards gender equity. Female members are encouraged to and do take an active role in the management and operations of the chapter. Many of our Presidents and other office holders past and present have been female.

In addition to its activites seeking social justice, D/NoVA has supported efforts to ban offical, organized discrimination against gay high school students in Virginia, and supported other religious groups, communities and causes. We are a supporter of New Ways Ministry and a member of the Northern Virginia AIDS Ministry (NOVAM) which seeks to help those suffering with the disease, and we have engaged in other charitable works such as furnishing supplies to the Carpenter's Shelter for homeless children, families and adults in Alexandria, VA. Our monthly collections of food and other items supports the Food Pantry at Our Lady Queen of Peace Church in Arlington, VA.

These and other activities are in keeping with D/NoVA's goal to seek to provide, facilitate, and /or sponsor religious, educational, community service and charitable activities to unite GLBT individuals as well as all Roman Catholics regardless of their sexual orientation, gender, age, race, ethnic origin, political affiliation, or any other classification, in a way that is consonant with Christ's teaching, to be an instrument of Christ, to develop leadership, to worship together in full communion, and to be recognized as a positive example of Christian community by the Church and by society.

D/NoVA seeks to openly express our Christian faith through the tenants of our Roman Catholic faith, to achieve Christian maturity, and to demonstrate our love of God through our actions, our interactions, and our example. D/NoVA seeks to focus and demonstrate our faith by sponsoring a weekly Mass, the sacraments, scripture, personal prayer, and the love of neighbor, in a warm, welcoming environment for the GLBT community, their friends and relatives, and the greater society.

D/NoVA aims to provide a place and time for religious services that include the sacraments, prayer, worship, and fellowship. D/NoVA aims to provide Liturgical (including Worship and Music) and Social Ministries.

D/NoVA aims to provide the basis for performing charitable (religious) acts which may include but are not limited to AIDS Ministry, Hospital Ministry, Homebound Ministry, Homeless and Abandoned Ministries, and Ministries to Gays and Lesbians.

D/NoVA aims to educate members, friends, and outside community in matters of faith as well as concerns of the GLBT communities so that sexuality and spirituality are integrated rather than exclusive. This may include but not be limited to Outreach Ministries such as Personal Contact, Seminars, Speaker Events, Printed Material, and Networking.

D/NoVA aims to educate the Church and society of the importance of inclusivity in all matters through our own example and in such a way so that all people feel welcome and comfortable in their knowledge that anyone can achieve the goals they work toward without being excluded based on classification, real or imagined. To limit anyone by using exclusive actions, statements, words or deeds, limits everyone from achieving their full potential.

D/NoVA aims through education and example to eliminate all forms of harassment, particularly sexual harassment, from society. All harassment and particularly sexual harassment is degrading not only to the person on which it is perpetrated, but also to the society as a whole. Harassment of any form shall not be allowed at any D/NoVA function, event or activity whether the function, event or activity be public or private, religious or secular, social or personal.

We pray and work for that day of reconciliation when the Roman Catholic Church will not consider its GLBT children as "intrinsically disordered," but will welcome and accept all people as children of God endowed and blessed with uniques gifts, talents and orientations that need to be nurtured, celebrated and developed for the praise and glory of God.