Where to wed • Pride Weddings & Celebrations 2011

Many local gay-affirming churches are happy to help couples jump the broom

A NEW IDEA | The new Interfaith Peace Chapel at the Cathedral of Hope, designed by gay architect Phillip Johnson, performs same-sex ceremonies.

Some folks are happy with a private ceremony expressing their love, but others appreciate the sanctity of a officiant declaring their union in the eyes of God. Here are some churches that embrace same-sex couples.

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AGAPE MCC — 4615 E. California Parkway (SE Loop 820), Fort Worth. 817-535-5002. Agapemcc.com. Revs. S. David Wynn, Sr., Teri Lubbers and Robert Myers. Require pre-service counseling.

Ascension Lutheran Church — 4230 Buckingham Road, Garland. 972-276-0023. Ascensiontexas.org. Pastor Kurt Friederich. Blessing service for church members; no weddings for non-members.

Bethany Presbyterian Church — 4523 Cedar Springs Road. 214-528-4084. Called “an open, caring, inclusive, multicultural ‘More Light’ congregation.”

Cathedral of Hope/Interfaith Peace Chapel — 5910 Cedar Springs Road. 214-351-1901, ext 109. Cathedralofhope.com. Senior pastor, Rev. Dr. Jo Hudson. Contact Brian Parman, director of the Interfaith Peace Chapel, for information. The Sanctuary of the Cathedral of Hope, United Church of Christ features beautiful faceted glass windows and can accommodate up to 750 guests. Reception accommodations are also available.

Celebration Community Church — 908 Pennsylvania Ave., Fort Worth, 817-335-3222. Celebration-community-church.com. Pastor Carol West; ask for wedding/holy union coordinator. Non-denominational Christian congregation.

Center for Spiritual Living — 4801 Spring Valley Road, Suite 115. 972-866-9988; CSLDallas.org. Senior minister Rev. Petra Weldes; Rev. Dr. Marsha Meghdadpour. Marriage or commitment ceremony. United Centers for Spiritual Living.

Community Unitarian Universalist Church — 2875 E. Parker Road, Plano, 972-424-8989. Communityuuchurch.org. Rev. Patrick D. Price. The Unitarian Universalist Church performs weddings and supports full marriage equality.

Congregation Beth El Binah — Resource Center Dallas, 2701 Reagan St. 214-521-5342, ext. 1784. Bethelbinah.org. Email Sandy Horwitz, shorwitz@bethelbinah.info or Diane Litke, dlitke@bethelbinah.info. Reform Jewish congregationReform Judaism recognizes marriage between two Jewish men or women; however the rabbi will perform an interfaith service.

First Unitarian Church of Dallas — 4015 Normandy Ave. 214-528-3990. Dallasuu.org. Rev. Dr. Daniel Chesney Kanter; Associate Minister, Rev. Aaron White. The Unitarian Universalist Church performs weddings and supports full marriage equality.

Grace Fellowship in Christ Jesus — 411 S. Westmoreland Road. 214-333-9779. Pastor Tony Hoult. Perform holy unions.

Harvest MCC — 3916 E. McKinney St., Suite B, Denton. 940-484-6159. Harvestmcc.org. Performs weddings or holy unions.

Metropolitan Community Church of Greater Dallas — 1840 Hutton, Suite 100, Carrollton. 972-243-0761. Mccgd.org. Revs. Colleen Darraugh, Steven Pace, Kay Seitz. Provides pre-marital counseling and performs weddings or holy unions. The church facility is available for non-members to rent.  The MCC can also connect couples with musicians, photographers and caterers.

Midway Hills Christian Church — 11001 Midway Road. 214-352-4841. Midwayhills.org. Rev. Terry L. Zimmerman. Performs union ceremonies.

Promise MCC — 2527 W. Colorado Blvd. 214-623-8400. Promisemcc.org. Senior pastor Rev. Jon Haack. Performs weddings or holy unions.

Trinity MCC — 1846 W. Division St. Suite 305, Arlington. 817-265-5454. Trinitymcc.org. Performs weddings or holy unions.

Unity Church of Christianity — 3425 Greenville Ave. 214-826-5683. Dallasunity.org.  Rev. Steve Colladay. Performs holy unions, commitment ceremonies. The minister is openly gay and supported by the congregation.

White Rock Community Church — 9353 Garland Road. 214-320-0043. Whiterockchurch.org. Pastor Douglas Shaffer. Contact wedding coordinator Mary Marshall for information. Performs holy unions, commitment ceremonies or weddings — “whichever the couple is comfortable with.” Activities center for receptions.

Unitarian Universalist Church of Oak Cliff — 3839 W. Kiest Blvd. 214-337-2429. Oakcliffuu.org. Rev. Mark Walz. The Unitarian Universalist Church performs weddings and supports full marriage equality.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 6, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Local briefs • 12.24.10

CoH plans Christmas Eve services

Cathedral of Hope United Church of Christ will hold five Christmas Eve services beginning at noon Friday, Dec. 24, with “A Shopper’s Christmas Eve” in the Interfaith Peace Chapel. Shoppers can buy gifts in the Sources of Hope gift shop, have their packages wrapped and worship during their lunch hour.

The Children and Families Service, with sing-alongs, puppets and more begins at 5 p.m., followed at 7 p.m. by Mass en Español in the Interfaith Peace Chapel.

Traditional candlelight communion worship services will be held at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m.

Services are free and open to all.

Pavillion holds Stocking Stuffer drive

The stocking stuffer benefit for Legacy Founders Cottage hospice continues through Friday, Christmas Eve, at Barbara’s Pavillion in Oak Cliff.

Patrons are asked to donate gifts to fill up the gigantic stockings at the bar and then donated to the Founders Cottage. Wish list items includes paper towels, Lysol, coffee, gift cards for groceries, disposable adult diapers (medium), cleaning supplies, hard candy, trash bags, Ziploc bags, disposable tableware, wipes, non-powdered latex gloves, games, etc.

Barbara’s Pavillion also has Christmas stockings on hand that patrons can purchase and decorate, with proceeds also benefiting Legacy Founders Cottage.

ONE Church in new location

The ONE Church, the only LGBT-affirming Apostolic Pentecostal church in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, now holds services each Sunday at 6 p.m. at Resource Center Dallas, 2701 Reagan St.

The church also holds prayer service each Thursday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., followed by Bible study from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., also at Resource Center Dallas.

Tuesday Night Fellowship is from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Buffalo Wild Wings on Lemmon Avenue at Douglas Avenue.

For more information go to the church’s website at Dallas1Church.org.

Sadlek wins MTAR award

The MetroTex Association of Realtors has announced that Mark Sadlek from Republic Title is the 2010 Affiliate of the Year award winner. The announcement came at MTAR’s annual awards and charity event.

Sadlek has served on the MetroTex board of directors and is a MetroTex Leadership Academy Graduate, currently serving on the Leadership Committee.

He also serves on the Human Rights Campaign’s Board of Governors and as co-chair of the Federal Club. He co-founded and chaired Leadership Lambda Inc. in Dallas and has done planning and fundraising for Design Industry Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA).

“I have been amazed with Mark’s dedication to MetroTex this year,” said 2010 MetroTex President Kay Weeks of Ebby Halliday Realtors. “His contributions to our organization reflect his professionalism and devotion to the real estate industry.”
MetroTex has honored one of its affiliate members with this award annually since 1982.

Stonewall Denton elects officers

DENTON — Stonewall Democrats of Denton County, now completing its third year, has elected new officers for 2011.

Eloy Machuca of Flower Mound was elected as the second president in the chapter’s history. Outgoing founding President John McClelland did not seek re-election.

“I was honored to have lead this chapter and in becoming the first openly gay elected official in the county in my final year,” said McClelland. “Our members put a lot of faith in me. I felt it was the perfect time to get some new blood on our executive board.”
Joining Machuca will be Vice President Courtney Medina of Flower Mound, Treasurer Tod King of Lake Dallas and Secretary Stacey Langley of Denton.

“Our new officers are representative of our chapter being male, female, Caucasian, Hispanic, gay, straight and bisexual,” said Machuca. “Stonewall is intended to fight for everyone.”

Stonewall Democrats of Denton County has been instrumental in holding a Pride Weekend in the city of Denton, organizing rallies for the Prop 8 rulings, providing scholarships for community organizations and promoting progressive Democratic candidates.

Estate-planning seminar set

Attorney John McCall and Sparkman Hillcrest Family Service Director Ron Boson are sponsoring a free estate-planning seminar on Jan. 2 at 2 p.m. at Oak Cliff Coffee in the Bishop Arts District. Complimentary coffee and refreshments will be served. Seating is limited so call 214-942-1100 to reserve a seat.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition December 24, 2010.

—  Michael Stephens

Local Briefs • 08.13.10

Landmark dinner inaugural

Lambda Legal is holding its inaugural Landmark Dinner at the W Hotel-Victory Park on Aug. 14. The gala celebrates the organization’s many landmark rulings including Lawrence v. Texas, the Supreme Court decision invalidating criminal sodomy laws across the country, and the Iowa case that secured marriage equality in that state.

Paul J. Williams will be master of ceremonies. A former Lambda Legal plaintiff will deliver the keynote address and Joe Pacetti and Christian Iles will present a diamond jewelry show and auction.

Although the dinner is sold out, Lambda Legal supporters are invited to the White Party Gala following the dinner. The gala will be held in the W Hotel Ballroom at 10 p.m.

Included in the ticket price is a show by the “King of West Hollywood,” D.J. Casey.

Tickets are $30 and may be purchased in advance by contacting the Lambda Legal office at 214-219-8585 or at the door.

Lambda Legal is the nation’s oldest national organization pursuing equal rights for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV through high-impact litigation, public education and advocacy.

Gay Pride gospel celebration

Cathedral of Hope United Church of Christ and Art for Peace & Justice will host the first annual “Gay”ther Homecoming on Sept. 18 as part of Pride weekend celebration. They will host an array of talent performing familiar hymns and gospel songs from the past.

More than 40 singers, songwriters and instrumentalists from across the nation will perform solos, group performances and audience sing-alongs.

Marsha Stevens, Mark Hayes, Susie Brenner and Rob Parker as well as two LGBT gospel groups, Out 4 Joy and Voices of Hope, will be among the performers.

Amy Stevenson, Danny Ray, Lonnie Parks, Shelly-Torres West, Kim Wisdom, and Rusty Johnson are among the Dallas talent that will participate. Timothy Seelig will be the director for the evening.

“As the invitations to participate have gone out across the U.S., the response has been phenomenal,” said Seelig.  “Everyone contacted has responded with immediate enthusiasm.  We will include as many musicians as the stage will hold!  Most of these talented folks have experienced a huge amount of hurt at the hands of the religions of their youth.  This is our opportunity to stand proudly and sing the songs we thought were lost.”

The evening’s proceeds will benefit the soon- to-be-dedicated Interfaith Peace Chapel designed by noted architect Philip Johnson.
Tickets are $15 for general admission and are available at H4PJ.org.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 13, 2010.

—  Kevin Thomas