I am incredibly honored to be part of this list. 2012 was such a great year in so many ways for those of us advocating for the equality of all people. What is especially cool is that so many people are beginning to argue for LGBTQ equality precisely because of their faith, not in spite of it. The whole year, especially after the city council speech went viral, was like none other that I’ve ever experienced before. My thanks to so many of you for helping make it so meaningful. I remain so grateful to be part of this journey with you. Here’s an excerpt from the article on Huffington Post. Head over there to see the entire list!
In 2012, the voices of Christian faith for LGBT equality have advocated for change across the country. Keep reading to see Believe Out Loud’s top ten moments of the year!
10: The First Lesbian was approved for ordination in the Presbyterian Church (USA), following a historic policy shift last summer allowing for the ordination of gay and lesbian clergy. Rev. Katie Ricks wrote: “At each new step forward in the ordination process, I realized that the “goal” that I had achieved was not the most amazing thing that had happened. Rather, I learned to put my life into the hands of God. I learned to trust in a community of companions to guide and walk alongside me on this journey of faith.”
9: Matthew Vines became a national sensation for his compelling research and presentation on what the Bible says about homosexuality. The twenty-two year old Kansan went to Harvard University, but after two years, he decided to take a leave of absence to study the Bible and homosexuality. Matthew’s presentation continues to support the Christian community as it expands its viral reach on YouTube.
8: The U.S. Episcopal Church overwhelmingly voted in support of the ordination of transgender people and made it illegal to discriminate against them in the 1.9 million member church. “TransEpiscopal,” a group of transgender Episcopalians including the Rev. Dr. Cameron Partridge,spearheaded efforts that lead to this historic policy shift.
7: While the United Methodist Church closed its General Conference in Tampa, Florida, without voting to include gay and lesbian people in the life of the church, delegates continued to work for LGBT equality. Bishop Melvin Talbert invited his fellow Methodist to participate in an act of biblical obedience: ”I call on the more than 1,100 clergy [who have signed marriage initiatives] to stand firm in their resolve to perform marriages for same-sex couples and to do so in the course of their normal pastoral duties, thus defying the laws that prohibit them from doing so.”