What does it mean to be a welcoming congregation, especially to people in the LGBTQ community?
During the summer of 2017, the Inclusive Church Taskforce hosted a series of brunches at the church to build community and focus us towards what it means for us to not just be welcoming in general, but to intentionally welcome people of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities.
Throughout the 2017-2018 program year, the Inclusive Church Taskforce will lead us deeper into this work, which includes education, relationship building, and discernment. If we decide to take on the “Reconciling in Christ” designation see (reconcilingworks.org) this will mean that we will write a welcome statement and will be publicly accountable to our commitments.
Please consider being a part of the process. The following members of Mount Olive comprise the taskforce: Randi Beyerl, Becky Lashinski, Jake Johnson, Mickaela Pasch, David Johnston, Elmer Odland, Paula Freitag, and Tom Rigby.
- In May, the Inclusive Church Taskforce presented a draft of their welcome statement and received over 150 replies to their survey. Their next steps are to reflect on the survey feedback, revise the welcome statement as necessary, and work with the church council to determine a timeline, strategy, and goals for our congregation going forward toward becoming a Reconciling In Christ (RIC) congregation. RIC is a designation for Lutheran communities that publicly welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. If you’d like a recap on what has been covered, or more resources to dig deeper on your own, please contact one of the taskforce members.