We really mean it. We know that so many people have been hurt by the church, especially by the attitude about homosexuality that so many Christian churches espouse. It might be intimidating to walk back through the doors of a church, and people have asked before whether we really mean what we say about welcoming all people. We believe that everyone is created in the image of God, and that God has made us with a spectrum of sexual identities. The United Church of Christ has long been at the forefront of the conversation about LGBTQ rights, articulating a theology than does more than just tolerate difference. We were the first Christian denomination to ordain gay and lesbian folks. Across the country our denomination has fought for the legalization of equal marriage and stood with those who faced discrimination. We are proud of this legacy. Our congregation and staff includes beloved LGBTQ members who participate in the full life and leadership of the church, several of whom have appreciated the opportunity to raise their kids and express their commitment as family in a community of faith.
But what, you might ask, about those troubling Bible passages. Out of the entirety of scripture, there are 7 passages that are used to clobber LGBTQ folks. It’s pretty clear that this is not the pressing issue on the mind of Biblical authors. Additionally, those 7 scriptures speak far more to rape, prostitution and coercive relationship than to the loving and co-equal partnerships that predominate in same-gender relationships, just as they do in hetero relationships.
If you want to talk more, our pastor would love to hear from you.