A Reconciling Congregation
St. Luke voted on June 28th, 2015 to become a Reconciling Congregation, welcoming all people. We updated our Mission Statement to read:
We are a growing church family welcoming ALL people,
Nurturing faith in the Living God,
And inspiring action for the transformation of the world.
We celebrate the gift of diversity of race, ethnicity, belief, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical and mental ability;
We strive to be a living expression of the love extended through Christ.
What does it mean to be a Reconciling Congregation in the United Methodist Church?
It means that we have made a commitment to being in loving Christian ministry with all people without prejudice, to truly have “open hearts, open minds, and open doors,” to work toward the time when our congregation, our denomination, and our society live the all-inclusive love that our faith demands. As a sign of that commitment—and a vehicle for helping to achieve it, we have officially affiliated ourselves with the Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN) and share its guiding principles:
Reconciling Ministries Network is a Christian and United Methodist organization. Its work is guided by the following core principles:
Reconciling Ministries Network is committed to the justice imperative of the Gospel and grounding its ministries in the Wesleyan practice of personal and social holiness. RMN is committed to utilizing inclusive language and respectfully recognizing the diverse approaches to scripture, tradition, reason, and experience of the congregations and communities with whom it relates.
Reconciling Ministries Network is committed to reconciliation that leads to the healing and transformation of animosity into a loving relationship amongst all God’s children. Authentic reconciliation requires peace with justice.
Reconciling Ministries Network aspires to fulfill our baptismal covenant to resist oppression in whatever form it presents itself in our movement, church, and world. RMN has a commitment to ending institutional racism, sexism, and economic injustice by working at the intersections of oppression and focusing on an ongoing examination of internal processes and external actions at all levels including its selection of issues and organizing strategies.
Integrating Sexuality with Spirituality
Reconciling Ministries Network believes that human sexuality is a good gift given by God. RMN is committed to supporting the integration of healthy, loving expressions of sexuality and spirituality for everyone. In particular, since the Church so often has sought to deny their full humanity, we celebrate the sexuality and spirituality of LGBT persons and pledge to provide resources that lead to a deeper understanding of God’s precious gift.
Reconciling Ministries Network acts in hospitality across theological divides and is committed to the creation of community, interconnectedness, and deep relationships.
Reconciling Ministries Network is committed to policy change and the creation of long-term solutions and practices that create full inclusion in The United Methodist Church and our broader society. RMN works for full equality in membership, ordination, and marriage for God’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender children.
Reconciling Ministries Network is committed to the stewardship of its organizational resources—the people, time, talent, and treasures—that God provides for transformation of our church and world.
Reconciling Ministries Network is committed to operating in a way that mirrors the change we hope to create in the world. Towards that end, we commit to honesty, integrity, excellence, equality, justice, dignity, civility, diversity, inclusion, and creativity. This includes continuous soul searching in all organizational practices and the provision of ongoing continuing education to all staff and board members to enhance skills and develop growth.