Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw said he disagrees with the team's decision to honor an LGBTQIA+ group due to its form of protesting and believes the situation led to the franchise expediting its announcement to relaunch Christian Faith and Family Day.
During an exclusive interview with the Los Angeles Times on Monday (May 29), Kershaw, who has spoken publicly about his faith throughout his MLB career and founded Kershaw's Challenge, a faith-based charity alongside his wife, Ellen, said he disagrees with the Dodgers' decision to re-invite the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, a group that initially gained national attention by leading protests while wearing nun outfits.
“I don’t agree with making fun of other people’s religions,” Kershaw said. “It has nothing to do with anything other than that. I just don’t think that, no matter what religion you are, you should make fun of somebody else’s religion. So that’s something that I definitely don’t agree with.”
“This has nothing to do with the LGBTQ community or pride or anything like that,” Kershaw added, reiterating that his issue was solely with the group and not the LGBTQ+ community at large. “This is simply a group that was making fun of a religion, that I don’t agree with.”
Earlier this month, the Dodgers disinvited the group from its annual Pride Night festivities amid protest from conservative Catholic groups. The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence were scheduled to receive the Community Hero Award during the 10th annual event coinciding with the Dodgers' game against the National League East Division rival San Francisco Giants on June 16.
The Dodgers later apologized and re-invited the group to Pride Night amid protest from LGBTQ+ and civil rights groups, local politicians and some team employees. Kershaw said he believes the situation led to the Dodgers rushing the announcement for the return of Christian Faith and Family Day, an annual staple at Dodger Stadium prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was made through his social media accounts.
“I think we were always going to do Christian Faith Day this year, but I think the timing of our announcement was sped up,” Kershaw told the Los Angeles Times. “Picking a date and doing those different things was part of it as well. Yes, it was in response to the highlighting of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence [by the Dodgers].”
The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence initially appeared in the Castro District of San Francisco in 1979 when three men protested over local and LGBTQIA+ issues while wearing nun outfits. The nonprofit has since grown largely into loosely organized chapters worldwide with a mission statement that says it is devoted "to community service, ministry and outreach to those on the edges, and to promoting human rights, respect for diversity and spiritual enlightenment."
Kershaw is one of the most decorated pitchers in franchise history, winning three NL Cy Young Awards and leading the NL in wins three times, strikeouts three times and ERA five times, as well as winning the 2020 World Series. The Texas native currently has a 6-4 record and 3.32 ERA in 11 starts during the 2023 MLB season.