On Sunday December 6, 2009 we celebrated becoming an Affirming Ministry within the United Church of Canada. One of over 50 ministries that have joined Affirm United in support and in celebration of the LGBTQ+, West Hill took this step after a year of exploration and following a unanimous vote supporting the motion at our June 2009 Annual Congregational meeting.
As a progressive congregation, West Hill has been a place of non-exclusivity and welcoming of diversity for many many years.
But declaring that we are an Affirming ministry is much more than receiving recognition for the openness that currently exists. In making a public, intentional and explicit (PIE) declaration, West Hill joined Affirm to stand alongside and in solidarity with those who have been marginalized due to their sexual orientation and gender identity or those who advocate for them. Our declaration also in some small way seeks to mitigate the effects of religious communities who have marginalized and continue to marginalize those who have walked the path of difference.
Part of that advocacy includes not remaining silent in the face of injustice. As allies, please consider how you might offer your voice to individuals or through organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community.