Last Updated: Monday, 02 April 2007
A WORD ON OPEN AND AFFIRMING FROM OUR PAST CLERGY:
The Rev. Ted Walker (pastor from 1949-71) wrote:
Most churches have a sign out in front of the building that says “All Welcome.” In a way, I suppose, it should not be necessary to ask a church to declare itself “Open and Affirming” to homosexual persons. However, so much prejudice and misunderstanding has been manifested toward this group of our friends and neighbors that it is imperative that a church should say out loud, “We love you and welcome you into our fellowship. We affirm your humanity in Christ’s name.”
The Rev. Fred Lyon (pastor from 1971-74) wrote:
I believe in an entirely inclusive God who calls us to be God’s people in word and deed, regardless of sexual orientation and practice. I believe this same God calls all persons into the church, to be in community, engaged in the church’s purpose and mission without qualification. And I believe that God wants us to extend hospitality and welcome to all persons in ways that the kingdom may come upon the earth.
The Rev. Kent Siladi (associate pastor 1981-85) wrote:
One of the things I remember about my time (in Brookfield) was the willingness of many people to engage in difficult subjects that were critical to the day. I remember the study groups and conversations about issues like peace, homelessness and hunger as well as other topics that were willingly embraced as important to talk about as people of faith. The process of Open and Affirming is one which in my opinion invites consideration of the question, “How do we understand what it means to be a community of God’s people in this time and place?”
The Rev. M. S. Desmond (pastor from 1975-97) wrote:
My prayers are with you and are joined with the parents and siblings, and children of those who have long endured the pejorative slangs and arrows of our bigotry and prejudice. It’s about time we got about the business of letting everyone know we are not only a church for all seasons . . . but a church for all people: Open and Affirming. The children have it right in the song about God’s love for little children: “Red and yellow, black and brown, etc.” God loves them all, and so do we . . . and with love and nurture God’s children grow up and we love them still. We do. Now we have the chance to make that statement a matter of record which we have been attempting to live through all these years. God is filled with hope.