McNeill, John J. and Charles Chiarelli Gay and Lesbian Liberation Collection
Span Dates: 1925-2001
Volume: 10 linear ft.
The majority of the John J. McNeill and Charles Chiarelli Gay and Lesbian Liberation Collection consists of material related to the events leading up to and his dismissal from the Order of Jesuits, as well as his continuing work in the field of gay and lesbian acceptance in the Catholic Church. It also includes some biographical details as well as manuscripts of his books. There are two scrapbooks, which are primarily material from his publicity tours for his book, The Church and the Homosexual.
There is extensive correspondence, primarily from men, who have been affected by John’s ministry as part of the Jesuits, his dismissal from the order, or his work as a psychotherapist after his dismissal. There are engagement calendars from 1983 – 1997 (1990 and 1991 are missing). A calendar from 1976 is also included. There are cassette tapes of his speeches and a large number of videocassettes. The collection also contains research and manuscript materials for McNeill's Ph.D. thesis on Maurice Blondel.
McNeill, a seminal leader in the gay and lesbian religious movement in the Catholic Church and the wider American community, became a Jesuit in 1948 and studied the philosophy of Maurice Blondel. In 1976 he published The Church and the Homosexual and was silenced by the Vatican. In 1987, he broke his silence to become a teacher, lecturer, writer, and psychotherapist and was soon after dismissed from the Jesuits. See our biographical sketch in the Profile Gallery of this website.
A finding aid is available online through the Online Archive of California.
His collection is held at the Graduate Theological Union Library in Berkeley, California.
McNeill, John J.,
Catholic gays -- United States ,
Church work with gays -- United States,
Clergy -- Political Activity,
Ex-priests, Catholic -- United States,
Gay Clergy -- United States,
Gay liberation movement -- Religious aspects,
Gays -- Religious Life,
Gays -- United States -- History -- 20th Century -- Sources,
Jesuits -- United States,
Kirkridge Retreat Center,