BLOG: VOICES FROM CEDAR LANE

LGBTQIA+ Social Justice Work at Cedar Lane

May 24, 2019
  • Marge Dimond

Upcoming LGBTQIA+ Engagement Opportunities

June is Pride Month - a time to celebrate members of the LGBTQIA+ community. The June celebration commemorates the Stonewall Riots, which took place on June 28, 1969. Police raided the Stonewall Inn in New York City’s Greenwich Village; but on that day bar patrons (gay men and drag queens) fought back -- a spontaneous incident, which is now viewed as the beginning of the gay rights movement in the United States.

2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, The theme for Capital Pride events this year will be "shhhOUT: Past, Present & Proud”; this theme reflects how far the LGBTQIA+ Community has come ever since the Stonewall uprising in 1969.

At Cedar Lane, the Together Diversity Team will be supporting the celebration of both this milestone Stonewall anniversary and the members of our own LGBTQ+ Community in a variety of ways.

  • A new “Progress” Pride Flag” (donated by Candice Haaga) has been hung in the main building vestibule area – along with an explanation about the flag’s meaning by its creator.
  • Saturday morning, June 8, 10 am: Join Rev. Archene Turner, Cedar Lane's Community Minister, and members of our LGBTQIA+ Affinity Group, at the Rise Up Stonewall Exhibit at the Newseum.  Details here.
  • Friday evening, June 21, 6:30 - 9:30 pm: Social Justice Film Series - presentation of “Stonewall Uprising" - click for event details
  • Sunday morning, June 23, 11:30 am: Tree of Life Coffeehouse - focus on celebrating Pride Month
  • Sunday morning, June 30, 10 am: Worship service organized by Rev. Archene and Rev. Abhi with a focus on celebrating the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. The Share-the-Plate offering at the service will benefit Casa Ruby in D.C. Ruby Corado (the founder and current director of the organization) will attend the June 30th worship service.

The UUA Welcoming Congregation Program at Cedar Lane

In 1989 the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), citing the principles of our UU faith (especially the one that affirms the inherent worth and dignity of every person), moved to adopt a Welcoming Congregation program plan for its member congregations.

At Cedar Lane (under the auspices of a designated leadership group), work was done during the early 1990s, which led to official certification for Cedar Lane as a Welcoming Congregation in 1995. With the introduction of a new UUA “Living the Welcoming Congregation” program in 2004, a LGBT Task Force group was formed to lead the way toward recertification in 2008. This year, Cedar Lane has responded to the recent introduction of a new UUA Welcoming Congregation Renewal Program. This program is designed to ensure that new members of the congregation understand the commitment Cedar Lane has made to welcoming LGBTQ+ people, and that all Cedar Lane members have opportunities to learn about the current needs and concerns of LGBTQ+ people.

Studying the new Welcoming Congregation requirements, our Cedar Lane Together Ministry Team has been pleased to discover that our ongoing LGBTQ+ social justice work at Cedar Lane has already been fulfilling those expectations on a yearly basis. However, starting with the upcoming 2019-2020 church year, the Together Team will be organizing specific plans for initiating the Welcoming Congregation Renewal Program at Cedar Lane in an “official” way.