Religious advocacy group the Catholic League has called for a boycott of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ pride night which features an award ceremony to honour the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (SPI) – an order of drag nuns.
In the lead up to the major league baseball team’s 10th annual LQBTQ+ pride event later this month, the Catholic League’s campaign will encourage listeners not to attend, through five days of ads on the Californian station KABC radio.
The radio script states that the group is “asking Catholics not to attend the game” in which an “anti-Catholic group, the ‘Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence,’ will be given an award.”
“We are not asking Catholics to boycott all games. Just this one. By doing so, we will send an unmistakable message that bigotry against Catholics should not be tolerated,” it reads.
The LA Dodgers came under fire from both the Catholic community and the LGBTQ+ community after flip-flopping on a decision to partner with the drag group for their 16th June pride night.
After initially announcing the partnership, the Dodgers revoked their decision following an outcry from Christians who argue the performers' content is blasphemous and offensive. Further backlash from LA pride groups led the team to issue an apology to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and re-invite them to “take their place on the field” at the event where they will be honoured with the Community Hero Award for their “lifesaving work that they have done tirelessly for decades.”
The SPI responded to the boycott campaign online, saying: “Though it is not our place to comment on the choices of organizations not our own, we, The Los Angeles Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, fully support the LA Dodgers on Pride Night and on every other night they magnificently play baseball. We unequivocally support our own LGBTQTIA2S community, as always."
Founded in 1979, SPI are a parody “order” that use religious imagery and satire to raise money for charities and LGBT advocacy organisations. The group's most popular fundraiser involves a “hunky Jesus” contest and takes place on Easter Sunday. According to Influence Watch, the non-profit has raised approximately $1.5 million for charitable causes.
Catholic charities USA (CCU) is one of numerous charitable organisations run by the Catholic church. According to the charity’s latest data, in 2021 alone it provided services to 15,000,000 people in the United States, fed 12 million people, provided shelter for almost one million people and provided disaster relief of over $116 million.