662 Guelph Line, Burlington, Ontario L7R 3M8 | 905.634.1809   

 

Declaration to Welcome and Affirm
All Who Are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Queer and Their Families
at St Christopher's Anglican Church in Burlington, Ontario

 

We have learned that
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (hereafter LGBTQ) people have experienced discrimination, prejudice, exclusion and even violence for loving who they love and being honest about who they are.
  • Sexuality and gender identity are not choices but a matter of inherent identity.
  • The process of 'coming out' and living honestly in society is one fraught with fear and stress.
  • LGBTQ children and teens, and the children of LGBTQ parents are especially vulnerable and at risk.
  • Our Holy Scriptures have been and continue to be misused, misunderstood and misrepresented as words that judge, hurt and condemn.
We acknowledge that
  • We are part of a Church that has failed to support and protect its LGBTQ members and the Queer community who are our neighbours.
  • We have allowed hatred, violence and injustice to go unchallenged.
  • Historically the Church has shared a message of hatred, exclusion and condemnation for LGBTQ people.
  • Fear, prejudice, oppression and persecution have been generated by the Church in the past and continues to be promoted by most Churches today.
  • Many have left our Church and others see us as irrelevant and hateful.
We celebrate that
  • The Diocese of Niagara has already authorized a rite for the blessing of same sex couples.
  • We have been able to meet our LGBTQ local community through our presence at Burlington Pride.
  • We are blessed with the presence of LGBTQ people involved in our ministry and life together here at St. Christopher's.
  • We have added LGBTQ resources to our library and run an educational program here at St Christopher's.
  • LGBTQ people have come to St Christopher's because we fly the Pride flag.
We affirm that
  • God loves everything God has created.
  • Our diversity, sexuality and gender identification are gifts from God, and in living and worshipping together, we encounter the fullness of life promised by Jesus of Nazareth to all people.
  • Our diversity, our sexuality and our gender identification are gifts by which God's image is more fully revealed in us and in our community.
  • All LGBTQ people are welcomed and affirmed as full members of our Church, in community life, in leadership and in our ministry.
  • Regardless of sexuality and gender identity, all faithful and loving relationships are blessed by God and are blessings from God.
We condemn
  • All acts of hatred, bullying, intimidation, discrimination, inequality and violence against people because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

 

We intend to continue to be a welcoming, affirming, accepting, understanding and loving
faith community where LGBTQ people and their families feel safe, and participate fully.

 

We will do this by:
  • Educating ourselves about the issues facing the LGBTQ community.
  • Learning by practice how to become a welcoming, positive and affirming faith community.
  • Building bridges to our local LGBTQ community and promote healing for past wrongs.
  • Speaking out against all hatred directed towards the LGBTQ community and all forms of discrimination
  • Working prophetically for justice and equality for the LGBTQ community.
  • Requiring groups and agencies who use this facility to sign a statement that they will not discriminate on the basis of sexuality or gender in events or meetings held at St. Christopher's church

 

© 2008 St Christopher's Burlington