University of Notre Dame expresses pride, welcomes gay athletes - New York News

University of Notre Dame expresses pride, welcomes gay athletes

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Notre Dame, an institution known for its catholic tradition, has a surprising new message. The university is now going all out with its stance on homosexuality.

“I’m a conference champion and I’m an out student at Notre Dame,” said an athlete on a YouTube video supporting gay athletes.

The video was posted by the “You Can Play” project and the University of Notre Dame. The video embraces the school’s LGBT community and features Notre Dame athletes and administration.

“Welcome home,” said Jack Swarbrick, Athletic Director at Notre Dame.

“You Can Play is a project dedicated to eradicating homophobia in sports,” said Brian Kitts, Co-Founder of You Can Play.

“Patrick Burke who is one of our co-founders is a Notre Dame alumnus and there have been nearly one hundred schools throughout the country that have participated in You Can Play,” said Kitts.

“I think the university intends to express its openness and tolerance for multiple points of view and put that out to reinforce that,” said Al Bucci in an interview with FOX 32’s Tisha Lewis.

Al Bucci is the Development Director at Notre Dame. He is also a former Notre Dame football player and Class of 1977 alumnus.

“We’re a Catholic University, we always reach out for people of all communities and even multiple faiths and so we embrace that and there was an opportunity based on one of our students who had a good story to tell,” said Bucci.

Some parishioners expressed concerns including Susan Tassone who said she’s a devout Catholic who attends mass every day.

“If you say you’re a Catholic or a Catholic University, then you’re Catholic and we have the values, we have our belief and our faith, then live by it. If you don’t believe that, then take out the word Catholic and call yourself whatever you want to call yourself,” said Tassone.

FOX 32’s Tisha Lewis reports there was no specific reason for the timing of the video but Notre Dame does say the video is the brainchild of two current athletes who identify as lesbian and gay.

10% of Notre Dame’s alumni live in Chicago making the city home to the University’s largest alumni population.

For more information and to view the video, visit HERE.

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