Southern Baptist Convention Denies Transgender Reality

The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) voted on June 10 to deny the experience of transgender people and block efforts for transgender rights. In the process, the SBC voiced its continued support for patriarchal and heteronormative gender norms, calling “distinctions in masculine and feminine roles…ordained by God as part of the created order.” Read more

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Oregon Makes 18!

On May 19, a Federal judge in Oregon struck down that state’s ban on same sex marriages, making Oregon the 18th state (counting the District of Columbia) to recognize same sex marriage. The order is effective immediately. Freedom to Marry coverage is here. The decision is here.

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Five Steps to LGBTQ Advocacy & Outreach

STEP 1: STAY CURRENT Effective advocacy begins with a solid grounding in the issues. Public policy debates, pending legislation and court decisions, and denominational action on LGBT concerns all provide excellent fodder for sermons, congregational forums and public outreach. Following is a list of e-newsletters available from faith-based and secular organizations on the front lines […]

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10 Ways to Go Beyond Welcoming and Affirming

Being a welcoming and affirming congregations requires going beyond publicly proclaiming that “all are welcome.” If lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) people enter your faith community, will they actually experience welcome? Many congregations that profess to welcoming LGBTQ people don’t talk much about LGBTQ issues or aren’t prepared to address the needs of […]

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10 Ways to Serve Transgender Congregants

Add a nondiscrimination clause to the congregation’s bylaws and hiring policies protecting gender identity and gender expression. Learn the language of gender identity and transgenderism. “Transgender” and “transsexual” are not synonymous, and terms such as “transvestite” and “hermaphrodite” are no longer in favor and may be offensive to some. The definitions provided in this guide […]

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10 Ways to Serve LGBTQ Families

Use inclusive language in all written and oral communications to recognize the diversity of family structures. Don’t use language that suggests that “family” only means a mom and a dad. Feature photographs of same-sex couples and their children in the congregational directory, on your web site, etc. Recognize and honor diverse families in worship services, […]

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10 Ways to Serve LGBTQ Youth

1. Ensure that all clergy and staff who work with youth are trained in adolescent growth and development and adolescent sexuality, and that this training includes sexual orientation and gender identity issues. 2. Offer faith-based, age-appropriate sexuality education to youth in your congregation. Our Whole Lives, created by the Unitarian Universalist Association and the United […]

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