As a temporary pastoral response to the Special General Conference decision of February 2019, CityWell has displayed the symbol of pride for our LGBTQIA + siblings. This was a sign of solidarity, welcome, and support in response to expressed pain and hurt from the decision of the General Conference. As we take down the temporary signs, we are replacing it with a firm and considered statement of inclusion, as found on the CityWell website and here below. (attach link to the website statement here) We continue to support and pray for and with our siblings who have been hurt by the decision of General Conference. In the coming months we will have an opportunity to discuss further how a fully shared life together might support each other and all of God’s children in times of both want and plenty.
Here’s the statement:
Who is welcome here?
All of us.
At CityWell, we long for you to find a home where you belong among family. In this community, we are learning to live into the vast and hopeful implications of Jesus’ promise that by means of the cross he would draw all people unto himself (John 12:32), of God’s promise to pour out the Spirit on all flesh (Joel 2:28, Act 2:17), and of the reality that in Jesus there is a new humanity that defies and destroys all dividing walls of hostility (Ephesians 2:13-18). We acknowledge we fall short and are committed to repentance and restoration. We are learning to receive and rejoice in the full breadth and beauty of God’s diverse creation.
Our church family includes differences across race, ethnicity, culture, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, theological perspectives, and socioeconomic status. We affirm and celebrate the personhood and gifts of everyone, encouraging participation at all levels of church leadership as we live into our identity in Christ. We are learning to offer our whole selves to God and to each other through Spirit-empowered practices of welcoming, offering, listening and gathering. For even though “no one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is perfected in us” (1 John 4:12).