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2013 Reconciling Anniversary Celebration!
Do you sometimes find yourself engaged in conversations with people on the other side of the LGBTQ Equality issue and wish you knew how to get to the next level of discussion rather than both sides just repeating well-rehearsed positions? Would you like consider the connection between sexuality and spirituality? Ever wish you were better equipped to make solid arguments about how people of faith are called to behave around LGBTQ Equality, including how to interpret commonly misunderstood Biblical scriptures? Do you long to have your mind and your spirit stimulated in the way that equips you to carry on the campaign for social justice?
Then please participate in the event being planned by the Affirming and Welcoming committee of First United Methodist Church of Boulder for March 9 and 10, 2013. We are very excited to have author, scholar and activist Jay Michaelson joining us for the stimulating weekend. Drawing on his Jewish tradition, his recent work on the Marriage campaigns in Maryland and Michigan, and the vast research he undertook in writing God vs. Gay? The Case for Religious Equality, Jay is able to bring together all of the major taboo subjects (sex, politics and religion) in a way that enriches us on multiple levels.
Our workshop on Saturday, March 9, begins at 9:30 am and concludes around 3:00 pm. Lunch and snacks will be provided (free will offering). In the morning, Jay will lead us in “How to Have More Productive Conversations, Even With Mean People.” In the afternoon, we will consider “What Does Sexual Diversity Teach Us About Spirituality?” Sign up now and bring your friends! LGBTQ Workshop Flyer
Workshop Registration Form
Then, on Sunday morning (March 10), Jay will join our Adult Forum at 9:00 am to specifically discuss his book, God vs. Gay? Copies of the book will be available for purchase by anyone interested. At our 10:30 am service, we will enjoy the always-inspiring sounds of the Resonance Chorus (led by Sue Coffee), make connections with our Jewish brothers and sisters, and hear Jay speak on “Why ‘Gay Rights’ is a Spiritual Opportunity for Straight People, Gay People and Everyone in Between.” Also, our Family Life Ministries will be holding a special Children’s Sunday School program on March 10th for the Reconciling Anniversary. Parents can enjoy Jay Michaelson’s presentation of his book God vs Gay, beginning at 9am in Adult Forum. There will be activities and snacks available to kids from 9am-9:45 in the nursery and the adjoining Sunday School room. Sunday School education will take place from 9:45-10:20am. The program will focus on the history, symbolism, and importance of FUMC’s inclusive ministries. There will be a K-2nd grade class and a 3-5th grade class.
We are moving forward on our own path of inclusion and social justice in support of same-sex marriage. To read our most recent press release CLICK HERE.
Faithfully Forward Toward Social Justice: In the United Methodist Church & Beyond
Hosted by the Affirming & Welcoming (Previously Reconciling) Committee
Saturday, March 3, 2012
9:30am Morning workshop for FUMC only
12:00 noon Lunch provided (RSVPs are helpful)
1:00pm – 3:00pm workshop with other
Rocky Mountain Conference congregations
Sunday, March 4th
9:00am Adult Forum discussion
10:30am Worship Service featuring Dr. Dorothee Benz and the Denver Gay Men’s Chorus
Join the Affirming and Welcoming Committee and Dr. Dorothee Benz (“just call her Benz”) as we celebrate First United Methodist Church’s 15th Anniversary of being a Reconciling Congregation.
As a principal organizer and mastermind of the We Do campaign in New York, Benz will help guide FUMC’s next steps in our calling toward full ministry to and with the LGBTQ community.
During our worship service, the Denver Gay Men’s Chorus, under the direction of Ben Riggs, will inspire us for our call to loving action. As always, all are invited to share in God’s bountiful and inclusive love through the morning communion service.
For more information, contact the church office at 303.442.3770 or Becca Tice at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dorothee Benz is a lifelong United Methodist, a member of Park Slope United Methodist Church in Brooklyn and the chair of Methodists in New Directions (MIND). As a young adult she had wanted to go into ministry, but the year she came out as a lesbian was the same year the UMC voted to bar gays and lesbians from ministry. Instead, she has devoted her life to social justice work.
Professionally, Benz has more than two decades experience as an editor, journalist, web manager and communications strategist working for economic, social, democratic and constitutional rights. Outside of paid employment, she is a leading strategist and organizer in the movement to end the United Methodist Church’s doctrinal prejudice and institutional discrimination against LGBT people.
Benz has a Ph.D. in political science from the City University of New York and a B.A. from Harvard University. Her writing and web design have won numerous awards, and she has published articles in Politics and Society, Dissent, Working USA, New Labor Forum, In These Times and elsewhere. Benz is a bodybuilder, backpacker, Adirondack 46er and sandcastler.
A Welcoming and Affirming Community; Part of the Reconciling Ministries Network
What is a Reconciling Congregation?
A reconciling congregation is a United Methodist local church that makes a public statement welcoming all persons, regardless of sexual orientation, to participate fully in its congregational life.
We are part of the Reconciling Ministries Network, organized in 1984, a growing movement of United Methodist individuals, congregations, campus ministries, and other groups working for the full participation of all people in the United Methodist Church.
FUMC Boulder officially became a reconciling congregation in 1997.
One of our most important core values is the belief that God loves all persons regardless of how they may be different from mainstream society. We follow Jesus’ teachings to include the marginalized as respected Children of God. As a sign of that belief, we became the only United Methodist church in Boulder County to publicly welcome gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender persons into full participation in our church family. We are a courageous faith community dedicated to diversity, inclusiveness, social justice, spiritual nourishment through many approaches, meaningful artistic experience and unconditional love. LGBTQA persons are at the core of our church leadership and the center of our love for all.
Located in the heart of downtown Boulder, FUMC Boulder is a vibrant church family that truly loves God by loving others. We affirm that the most profound life changing realities are characterized by words like these: kindness, acceptance, justice, compassion, forgiveness, mercy, generosity and love.
We believe there are many people in Boulder County who seek a community that walks with them in their search for meaning and purpose in life, a place that calls out and celebrates their talents and abilities, a place where questions are welcomed, not stifled. People want a community where they can learn, grow, worship and serve without strings attached or hidden agendas. We all long for those places where we can be ourselves and be in relationship with a caring and compassionate community.
If this sounds different from what you expect a church to be, we ask you to “Rethink Church”. We are respectful of traditions that ground us and add meaning to our lives; at the same time we remain open to contemporary calls to understanding, social justice and spiritual expression.
Why do we have to make this statement?
Studies have shown that the overwhelming perception within the lesbian/gay community today is that they are not welcome in churches. Because they have faced blatant discrimination within the church, their welcome has become the crucible for the inclusive Body of Christ. Like letting your light shine rather than hiding it under a bushel (Matt.5:15), this decision is an event to celebrate rather than a decision to be kept quiet.
We worship at 10:30 a.m. every Sunday and offer many different opportunities for smaller group interactions and growth throughout the week.
You will be welcomed. Come see for yourself.