Good afternoon siblings in Christ,
After coffee hour today, the vote to become a Reconciling in Christ congregation was closed. With 31 yes votes and 0 no votes, we will proceed with finalizing the RIC process as we publicly affirm and stand with our 2SLGBTQIA siblings as a church.
We started this process in 2019 and were ready to vote in 2020 after a positive survey. Due to Covid, we ceased the process, but had changed our welcoming statement and began to act as if we were an RIC congregation. The only thing missing was making it official.
After Easter, we resurveyed the congregation and allowed anonymous feedback and after receiving so much positive feedback, the council chose to move forward confidently. A newsletter article outlined the process and the question to be voted on and reminders were placed in my weekly Wednesday(ish) e-mailings. Members had the opportunity to vote in person or email the response to me. All we asked were for a “yes” or “no” with initials to distinguish votes.
What happens now? As stated earlier, you will not see much of a change as we have been acting like an RIC congregation for the last several years as the Synod is already an RIC Synod. One sentence about anti-racism will be added to our welcome statement and a small cross or heart symbol rainbow colored will be present on our media. That is what most people will notice.
Behind the scenes, we will be registered as an RIC congregation at Reconciling Works, a site that identifies LGBTQIA friendly congregations. I will also be making a donation on behalf of the congregation to the group. It will be announced of social media on the Reconciling Works site.
This is an excellent step in the life of Our Saviour as we continue to connect with our DNA as a church. We value inclusivity and continue to stand against hatred. This is who we are. This is what Jesus meant by loving neighbor.