DE PERE, Wis. (WFRV) — Students from St. Norbert College peacefully protested a community church on Sunday.
The students protested outside the Old St. Joe’s Catholic Church located on 123 Grant St. in De Pere starting around 4 p.m.
Organizers say they were protesting a mass taking place. They say college administrators changed the theme of a mass that was originally intended to celebrate solidarity between the catholic church and the LGBTQ community.
The students say the theme of the mass was changed because of “catholic religion not agreeing with the theme of the event.”
According to the protesters, “National Coming Out Week” is St. Norbert’s first LGBTQ-themed week celebration. The week-long event is in celebration of “National Coming Out Day,” which was on Friday, Oct. 11.
President of the LGBTQ+ Spectrum Alliance at St. Norbert College Randi Groff says the protest is helping to promote an important word: solidarity.
“Solidarity means unity,” Groff says. “It means we’re all here for a common purpose, that we’re all here to support and love each other. Not necessarily that our views have to align with each other, but that we both have genuine love and support for each other.”
Protesters were promoting solidarity by writing messages of “love and inclusion” on the sidewalk.
The protesters finished up by having a prayer vigil outside the church around 6 p.m.