This collection includes personal papers, correspondence, speeches,
articles both about and by J. McNeill, typed manuscripts of three books, Blondel research and thesis, video and audio cassettes,
engagement calendars, books and computer discs.
John J. McNeill (1925 -) was born in Buffalo, New York on September 2,1925. He attended schools in New York State and one
year at Canisius College, Buffalo when in 1943 he volunteered for an officer's training program (ASPA) in the Army as an engineer.
He spent six months in German POW (Prisoner of War) Camps. He served until November 29, 1945.
He earned several degrees: Canisius College, A.B. (magna cum laude) in 1948; Bellarmine College, M.A. and Ph. L., 1954; Woodstock
College S.T.L., 1960; Catholic University of Louvain, Ph.D. (with great distinction), 1964; and Institutes of Regional and
Health, postdoctoral study, beginning in 1975.
John joined the Society of Jesus (Jesuit Order) in 1948 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1959. He remained a Jesuit
until his dismissal in 1988. He was dismissed from the Jesuits due to his inability to continue to remain silent on matters
of homosexuality and lesbianism.
He has published several books: The Blondelian Synthesis: A Study of the Influence of German Philosophical Sources on Blondel's
Method and Thought, 1966; The Church and the Homosexual, 1976; Taking a Chance of God: Liberating Theology for Gays, Lesbians
and Their Lovers, Families, and Friends, 1988; Freedom, Glorious Freedom, 1995; and Both Feet Firmly Planted in Midair: My
Spiritual Journey, 1998. He has contributed chapters to many other books including Conscience: Its Freedom and Limitation,
1971 and published articles in several journals. He has been mentioned in many books and articles for his defense of gays
and lesbians. He has received numerous awards and honors, some of which are in this collection.
McNeill's academic work includes teaching at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, LeMoyne College in Syracuse, New York,
and at Fordham University in New York. He also was a professor of Christian Ethics at the Woodstock Jesuit Seminary and Union
Theological Seminary specializing in Sexual Ethics. John was also active in the beginnings of Dignity, an association of gays
who continue to be active in the Catholic Church.
He is considered to be seminal in the field of gay and lesbian acceptance within the Catholic Church. At the time of this
writing, John still works actively in this field.
Copyright has not been assigned to The Graduate Theological Union. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts
must be submitted in writing to the Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Graduate Theological Union
as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must
also be obtained by the reader.