Last Saturday, eight of us met with Rev. Tracy Barnowe to learn a wonderfully relational (and easy!) way to reach out beyond our congregation to those who might share our values and vision. We’ll be meeting again in a few days to discern our next steps—so stay tuned on that front!
In her workshop, Tracy mentioned some of the ways a church like ours might be different from other faith communities. One of those relates to how we understand “salvation.”
For progressive Christians, “being saved” is less about the next life and more about this one. Tracy suggested that we can “save” people here and now not by having them confess Jesus as Lord and Savior but by actively working to make others safe from unsafe circumstances. (Tracy isn’t the first to say this but might have been the first to help us really hear this!)
Even before Tracy made her statement about working to ensure others’ safety, the Spirit was moving. Looking ahead to the opportunity we have to show up for LGBTQIA+ (and ally) programming at the Montrose Library, two weeks ago, I went online and purchased enough “You are safe with me” lapel pins for all of us to wear. I distributed them when we were at the Ute earlier this month. (If you want one, reach out!)
My motivation in sharing these pins was this: when we participate in the Library’s upcoming offerings, the pins on our jackets and sweaters can help make it clear that we care about the physical, emotional, and spiritual safety of our LGBTQIA+ siblings. Those pins can also help make it clear that we’re at the Library not simply as interested individuals but as a caring, concerned group. Having our pins visible gives us an easy way to talk to others—at the Library or wherever else we might go—sharing in non-defensive ways what’s important to us and why.
Those who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community don’t need to be “saved” so that they can be spared in some way. Like everyone else, our LGBTQIA kin is made in God’s image and are perpetually, and unconditionally loved. Even so, they can and do need to be helped to feel safe, and we are part of what God is doing to ensure that their unsafe circumstances are made safe, safer, safest by the power of love and justice.
If you haven’t ready, mark your calendar now for the upcoming Library offerings (all taking place in the main meeting room). If you need a ride, let me know!
|Monday, February 6||6:00 to 8:00 PM||Workshop: How to be a good ally|
|Friday, February 10||6:00 to 9:00 PM||Film: Flee|
|Friday, March 3||6:00 to 9:00 PM||Film: The Most Dangerous Year|
|Friday, March 24||6:00 to 9:00 PM||Film: Love, Simon|
|Monday, April 17||6:00 to 8:00 PM||Repeat Workshop: How to be a good ally|
With you on the journey,