Don’t bash welcoming churches
In the June 16th issue, the new pastor at Harvest Metropolitan Community Church in Denton was quoted as saying that the welcome of mainstream churches extends only so far. She goes on to say, “Try taking communion together with your partner, as a couple, and then kissing your partner afterwards. See how welcome they are to that.” The implication of her comments was that mainstream welcoming churches only goes so far, that gays are only somewhat welcome. This offends me as a member of a welcoming congregation, Trinity Presbyterian Church in Oak Cliff, where I am director of music.
I applaud the efforts of all Christians who make the effort to reach out to the GLBT community. We all face many challenges in trying to heal the wounds inflicted by those who do not affirm our sexuality. I do not feel that we need to inflict more wounds on each other.
The mainstream churches that I am aware of face many difficulties if not dangers in their pro-gay stance. Ministers face possible loss of credentials. Churches can, in extreme situations, lose their property. All of them face loss of non-accepting members and the financial consequences of those losses. In our own church, the pastor has had clergy from other churches decline to celebrate communion with her.
So, to me its not a “can I kiss my boyfriend or girlfriend at church” issue. Many of the mainstream welcoming churches are at the forefront of advancing gay issues at both the local and denominational level. The questions I would ask any potentially welcoming mainstream church are: Am I able to participate in worship as a gay person? Does the church listen to my voice? What does the church say about my relationship to God and to others? Are my talents appreciated and needed? I think the answer at many welcoming churches is positive on these and many other issues, and I invite you to try them out. I don’t think bashing welcoming churches is appropriate.
Director of Music
Trinity Presbyterian Church
Formulate solutions, Democrats
I take offense when pinheads like Richard Leggio (“Want better government? Make it,” Viewpoints, Dallas Voice, June 23) smear this country and the powers that be. We live in the greatest, most secure, economically and technologically advanced nation on God’s green Earth, and yet it’s never enough for people like you.
The reason Democrats can’t win is simple: they can’t govern and in turn, they can’t get elected. I know, I know, I may be setting myself up to eat these words come November. That’s a price I’m willing to pay. I’m not too worried though. Again, the Democrats have nothing except mud to throw across the aisle.
Stop focusing so much on what the GOP does or doesn’t do. Formulate your own plan, come up with your own solutions, and share those with the American people. Yeah, I don’t mind sharing that bit of strategy with you Democrats; commonsense isn’t in your rule book. See you in November!
aka Captain Cox at www.captaincox.com
HRC’s presence and work benefits all
In a June 23, 2006 letter to the editor, Mr. Wayne Norman asks if the Human Rights Campaign Foundation must meet the same requirements as local organizations in order to receive funding from the Black Tie Dinner. The answer is “yes”; the requirements are the same for all beneficiaries. HRC annually meets and far exceeds the requirements for beneficiary status through the devoted efforts of members of the local HRC Steering Committee and the Dallas-Fort Worth Federal Club.
Each of the 2006 Black Tie Dinner beneficiaries does an outstanding job of promoting the Dinner within their own organizations, to the clients they serve, and to the general public. HRC provides national support for this local dinner, assists in promoting this annual event throughout the nation, and consistently recognizes the efforts of our volunteers and our guests in achieving one of the most successful fundraising dinners in the nation. We know every beneficiary organization receives direct added benefit as the result of HRC’s valued contributions, and we are proud and grateful for the 25 year partnership Black Tie Dinner shares with HRC.
If Mr. Norman has additional questions about the Black Tie Dinner, we encourage him to visit our website at www.blacktiedinner.org, click on the Feedback link and send his inquiry to us directly.
Tom Phipps and Deiadra Burns
Co-Chairs, 2006 Black Tie Dinner
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This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, June 30, 2006.