Voting on Open and Affirming (ONA) Congregation of the UCC
Voting Sunday, January 14, 2017
THOUGHTS: Sunday’s special congregational meeting (after worship) to vote on becoming an Open and Affirming (ONA) Congregation of the United Church of Christ is on my heart and mind. As part of the sermon Sunday I plan to share my journey from being a “sweet little Baptist girl”* who did not know there were individuals who had loving, intimate relationships with a person of the same gender to an ordained UCC minister who supports Marriage Equality and believes all people – regardless of gender or sexual orientation – must be welcome to participate in every aspect of church life as spelled out in a congregation’s Constitution, By-Laws, and Safe Church Policy.
THIS SUNDAY: I will use Psalm 139 as the jumping off point for the sermon. We’ll sing “Hymn of Promise (In the Bulb)” and “Blest be the Tie That Binds.”
DID YOU KNOW? Background for the vote to be Open to and Affirming of People who identify as LGBT was included in the January Star. In case you’ve missed it, here is Bethany UCC’s PROPOSED Open and Affirming Statement:
No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome at Bethany United Church of Christ, Baxter, Iowa.
We welcome you to share in God’s unconditional love, the grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and the strength received through the Holy Spirit.
We welcome you regardless of race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, age, gender identity, economic or marital status, or faith background.
Because we at Bethany believe in the two great commandments Jesus taught — love God and love others –- we invite you to come, worship, and serve with us.
At Bethany UCC, we invite everyone to come and experience the joy of full membership as we serve Jesus.