Why Does it Matter?

Why Does It Matter?
As a Reconciling Ministries Community, we want to make sure that all feel welcomed in our church, especially those who are marginalized. Our RMC mission statement speaks not only of sexual orientation and gender identity, it also includes race, age, ethnicity, physical or mental capacity, education, economic or marital status. We want to make sure that ALL are invited to be part of God’s family, that ALL are encouraged to become involved in the life and ministry of our church, that ALL have a seat at the grown-ups table, and no one is left out.
For several years our own Lynda Mounts attended another church in the denomination where she was raised. The pastor knew that Lynda was gay, and told her every time he saw Lynda that he was praying for her. She was pretty certain that he was praying that God would “save” her from the sin of homosexuality, as he understood it. He was very sincere in his beliefs, and his prayers were no doubt equally as sincere.
What Lynda needed then, what she needs now, is a church that will pray WITH her, walk WITH her. What marginalized persons need is a church home that will pray WITH them, walk WITH them. That’s a big part of what we want UMCV to be.
Why does this matter? Why does it matter how welcoming we are? It matters to the single parent who is working hard to raise their child. It matters to the millenial (22-35 yrs old) who wants to find meaning for their life. It matters to the parent of a trans child who wants desperately to provide healthy spiritual guidance along with love and nurturing. It matters to the person who lives with a disability and needs barriers removed. It matters to the couple who fall in love and need a church
 an abomination in God’s eyes, and have never darkened a church door since, afraid that God really doesn’t love them. It matters to the parents who have been told that their child’s sexual orientation damns them to hell, and that it is the parent’s fault. It matters to all who have been excluded and need desperately to know that they are beloved by the God who created them, and by those who claim the name Christian.
-Lynda Mounts/Barbara Mitchell

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