Dodgers apologize, reinvite Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence to Pride Night

The Los Angeles Dodgers apologized Monday and reinvited the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence to their Pride Night event on June 16.

The Dodgers announced May 17 that they had disinvited the human rights and LGBTQ+ advocacy group from the festivities in response to criticism from conservative political Catholic groups. The team reversed that decision in an announcement alongside the apology.

“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 Dodgers would like to offer our sincerest apologies,” the statement reads.

The Dodgers also announced that the Sisters had accepted their invitation while vowing to "continue to work with our LGBTQ+ partners to better educate ourselves, find ways to strengthen the ties that bind and use our platform to support all of our fans who make up the diversity of the Dodgers family."

Sisters accept Dodgers' apology

The Sisters released their own statement confirming that they had accepted the Dodgers' apology.

“A full apology and explanation was given to us by the Dodgers staff which we accept,” the statement reads, per KTLA. “We believe the apology is sincere because the Dodgers have worked for 10 years with our community and as well they have asked us to continue an ongoing relationship with them.”

Who are the Sisters?

The Sisters are a self-described "order of queer and trans nuns" who vow to "use humor and irreverent wit to expose the forces of bigotry, complacency and guilt that chain the human spirit." A group with 44 years of community service, they were founded in 1979 in San Francisco with a focus on providing care for gay men with HIV/AIDS.

The group has since expanded with chapters nationwide and a self-described devotion to "community service, ministry and outreach to those on the edges, and to promoting human rights, respect for diversity and spiritual enlightenment." They dress satirically in nuns habits during community events.

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at a 2016 Pride parade in West Hollywood, California. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at a 2016 Pride parade in West Hollywood, California. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)

What prompted the cancellation

Critics including the Catholic League and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (R) took offense to the group while labeling the Sisters as "anti-Catholic." Rubio wrote a letter to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred declaring that the group "mocks Christians through diabolical parodies of our faith."

The Dodgers responded to the criticism by removing the Sisters from their Pride festivities, citing "the strong feelings of people who have been offended."

“Given the strong feelings of people who have been offended by the sisters’ inclusion in our evening and in an effort not to distract from the great benefits that we have seen over the years of Pride Night, we are deciding to remove them from this year’s group of honorees,” the Dodgers' May 17 statement reads.

The Dodgers' tweet of the statement has since been deleted.

The decision prompted protest from Los Angeles politicians and groups, including the Los Angeles LGBT Center, the ACLU of Southern California and L.A. Pride, which all withdrew from Dodgers Pride Night in response to their initial decision. The Los Angeles LGBT Center announced Monday evening that it would rejoin the Sisters at Pride Night.

ACLU of Southern California and L.A. Pride had not responded to the news as of the time of this post.