3 cville faith leaders
Three Charlottesville faith leaders who embrace LGBTQ individuals.

Finding Faith: A Challenge for LGBTQ People

Cville Pride is an a-religious organization, but if you’ve come to our festival, you’ve witnessed the Spirit Grove, as we affectionately call it – a collection of local vendors representing Buddhists, meditators, the Jewish temple, spiritual groups, and Christian churches.

sojourners tent at pride festival
The Sojourners tent at the Cville Pride Festival.

For many LGBTQ people who grow up in a faith tradition, the coming out process often involves the loss of and rejection from that religious community. Sometimes, LGBTQ individuals can remain a participant in a tradition, as long as they remain somewhat closeted. Either way, the shaming and damning of LGBTQ people by religious bodies not only harms individuals emotionally and spiritually, but it affects the ways our culture views us and gives our politicians validation for creating and upholding discriminatory laws that keep us vulnerable and sidelined.

Even in 2017, it’s rare to find a congregation (let alone a whole denomination or religion) actively offering open, affirming arms to LGBTQ people. (Possibly the reason for the cliche about gay people spending Sunday mornings at brunch?) Which is why we at Cville Pride believe it’s so important to have a festival that includes and celebrates these rarities. It’s why we offer free safe-space training to congregations that are willing to take it, and it’s why we list places of worship on our website.

For many festival attendees, taking part in the inter-religious ceremony, having communion, getting blessed by local faith leaders in attendance is the first time they’ve connected with religion in a long time.

If you attend a religious gathering that would like to have safe-space training and/or participate at the festival, please let us know!

Local Church Hold Pride Picnic

And for those of you looking for a spiritual way to celebrate Pride Month, we’re happy to share that Sojourners is holding their annual Pride Potluck Picnic this Sunday:

Meg Day is an internationally renowned poet who is on the faculty of Franklin & Marshall College. Meg will preach about Poetry in Proclamation. Our annual Pride Potluck Picnic in the Park follows this service. Bring a dish to share and a lawn chair or blanket as you’re able.

SOJOURNERS UCC

1017 ELLIOTT AVENUE

(CORNER OF MONTICELLO & ELLIOTT AVENUES)

Worship service Sunday, 10:00 am

434-977-1481,

churchoffice@sojourners-ucc.org,

www.sojourners-ucc.org,

www.facebook.com/SojournersUCC

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