Thomas will preach at Sunday morning services; special service of induction scheduled for Sunday afternoon
The Rev. John H. Thomas, general minister and president of the United Church of Christ, will participate Sunday, Feb. 4, in a special service of induction during which the Cathedral of Hope will be officially welcomed as a member of the UCC denomination, Cathedral officials announced this week.
Thomas will preach at the Cathedral’s 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. services that morning. The induction service will be held at 3 p.m.
“This will be a very special day in the life and ministry of the Cathedral of Hope and of the United Church of Christ,” said the Rev. Dr. Jo Hudson, the Cathedral’s rector and senior pastor.
The Cathedral of Hope is the largest church in the world serving a primarily LGBT membership. The Cathedral was accepted into the UCC by a vote of the denomination’s North Texas Association last October, becoming the fourth-largest congregation in the denomination, and the largest congregation in UCC’s South Central Conference.
Thomas, who was elected at the UCC General Synod in Providence, R.I. in 1999, made headlines in 1995 when he came out in support of same-sex marriage, urging Congress to vote against a proposed federal constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. He later led the denomination as a whole to support gay marriage.
Thomas serves as one of five officers of the denomation, known as the Collegium of Officers. These officers guide the national ministries of the denomination.
As general minister and president, Thomas is the presiding officer of the Collegium. He is also the principal spokesperson of the General Synod and the official representative of the denomination in ecumenical and interfaith relations.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 2, 2007