AFFIRMING AT CANADIAN MEMORIAL UNITED CHURCH
In Spring 2017 Canadian Memorial began the United Church of Canada’s Affirming Ministries process. For the next year, we will engage in reflection and education on what it means to be fully inclusive of LGBTQ2SIA+ people. (Wondering what that means? Check out the ABCs of LGBTQ2SIA+)
We will explore and learn through the coming year during Sunday worship, film nights, storytelling circles, workshops, art, and events in the wider community related to the Affirm process. The main resource guiding the process is the Open Hearts document developed by Affirm United. Read Affirm United’s annual report here.
Why being Affirming makes a difference
Hillhurst United, Calgary AB: Affirming Church, Affirming Ministry: https://vimeo.com/138491906
Riverside United Church, London ON: Being an Affirming church: https://youtu.be/lcx6cImMlhY
Our draft process for the year and upcoming events are listed below.
What is Affirming? (Find out about what being Affirming means)
Why Affirming? (Discover the differences between welcoming and affirming)
Past Events (Read about our past Affirming events/activities)
Resources (A growing list of resources for learning about the LGBTQ2SIA+ community including differences between biological sex, gender identity, gender expression & sexual orientation, scripture and sexuality, allyship and more)
Draft Outline of CMUC’s Affirming Process for June 2017-2018
September 2017 – Storytelling Circles (personal stories of how issues of sexual orientation and/or gender identity have touched your life)
October/November 2017 – Shower of Stoles art exhibit at the Centre for Peace
November 2017 – Theological exploration of Biblical scriptures used to discriminate, also known as the “clobber passages” or “terror texts” / Film night
January/February 2018 –
– Educational workshop around gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, biological sex
– Exploring what would it mean for CMUC to be affirming?
March/April 2018 – Visioning for Affirming (vision statement/action plan)
June 2018 – Congregational vote
Interwoven through this time:
-Publicizing events related to LGBTQ issues and awareness
-Testimony from congregation once every month/2 months during September – May
– Monthly display table at coffee hour with resources, upcoming events, information
If you have any questions, ideas for events, connections, or would like to participate in helping host events/staff the display table/etc, please contact Toni Pieroni (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Emily Simpson (email@example.com)
For more information on the Affirming process, check out our links below, especially our Resources page which is regularly updated.
March 20 – ? Love, Simon in Vancouver theatres
Everyone deserves a great love story, but for 17-year-old Simon Spier, it’s a little more complicated. He hasn’t told his family or friends that he’s gay, and he doesn’t know the identity of the anonymous classmate that he’s fallen for online. Resolving both issues proves hilarious, terrifying and life-changing. Based on the novel Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli.
6-9pm, 5th Floor of YMCA, Burrard St.
12 – 3 pm. CMUC Sanctuary
Part of the Affirming process is to create language for the mission statement or vision statement that explicitly states the inclusion and affirmation of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Another key part of the Affirming process is creating an action plan that demonstrates how the congregation will live out its commitment to justice seeking for the LGBTQ2SIA community and/or other marginalized groups in the upcoming year(s). Please join us to be part of this intentional and exciting process.
Light lunch provided so please sign up in the office by April 25th.
Jack is a Cree Two-Spirit Transman and activist who captivates his audience by sharing his message of Embracing Two Spirits, Conquering Mental Health, and Finding One’s Identity.