Dodgers apologize to Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence after controversy

people in nun-like costumes waving pride flag
Members of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence lead people on a march around City Hall, which is lit in the colors of the rainbow flag to honor the LGBT victims of the worst mass shooing in United States history, on June 13, 2016 in Los Angeles, United States. Photo credit David McNew / Getty Images

The Dodgers apologized Monday for withdrawing their Pride Night invitation to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence last week, a move that sparked criticism from various local organizations and officials.

First heard in an interview with KNX News, the Sisters announced that they would accept the apology and appear at Pride Night.

The Sisters were initially set to be honored with a community service award for their charitable work, which began in 1979 in response to the AIDS crisis. But after backlash from Catholic organizations, the Dodgers withdrew the invitation last Wednesday.

The decision to uninvite the group, which describes itself as an “order of queer and trans nuns,” was widely criticized by LGBTQ rights supporters, including the Los Angeles LGBT Center, LA Pride, and countless state and local politicians.

On Monday afternoon, the Dodgers reversed course and once again reinvited the Sisters.

“After much thoughtful feedback from our diverse communities, honest conversations within the Los Angeles Dodgers organization and generous discussions with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, the Los Angeles Dodgers would like to offer our sincerest apologies to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, members of the LGBTQ+ community and their friends and families,” the Dodgers said in a statement.

Sister Unity, a member of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, said the controversy was a misunderstanding due to a lack of familiarity with the group’s work.

“The sisters are very, very enthusiastically welcoming this invitation,” Sister Unity told KNX News. “We understand that the Dodgers are people, you know, it’s not a monolith. It’s run by people. And some people are familiar with us, who had invited us in the first place, and some people in their organization were not familiar and were very alarmed by the concern of the Catholic representatives who had voiced concern.”

Sister Unity said the Dodgers apologized to the organization’s leadership at an in-person meeting over the weekend, which included the CEO of the Dodgers Foundation, several senior vice presidents, multiple California politicians, and the heads of local LGBTQ organizations.

“We think it’s a sincere apology. In our community we’re used to people giving lip service but not really serving deeply,” Sister Unity said. “But the Dodgers seemed so sincere because they've worked with us for ten years and they have asked us, not just the LGBT community but the Sisters, to continue an ongoing relationship.”

The mayor of Anaheim also invited the Sisters to attend the Anaheim Angels’ Pride Night following the Dodgers controversy. The Sisters have not officially responded yet, but Sister Unity says the group will most likely accept the invitation.

Featured Image Photo Credit: David McNew / Getty Images