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 Pro-homosexuality UM Organization Changes Name And Plans To "Galvanize Resistance" To Church Teachings



Reconciling Board Claims Historic Time for Church of Resistance

Reconciling Congregation Program Changes Name

For Immediate Release
October 30, 2000
Contact: Marilyn Alexander

CHICAGO--Meeting at the national Reconciling Congregation Program (RCP) office in Chicago, on October 13 –15, the Board members and staff spent three days in intensive education and visioning. Reviewing the RCP activities at and actions of the UMC General Conference 2000, and response from constituents through 20 recent Listening Posts across the country – the Board shaped a vision for the organization s future. A wide network of Reconciling United Methodists and Congregations were holding this Board meeting in prayer.

The Board claimed a new role in galvanizing efforts to make visible the inclusive membership within the United Methodist Church. They prayerfully decided to boldly expand and claim this movement. Over the last decade, 35% (roughly three million people) of United Methodists have repeatedly voiced support for the full inclusion of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender persons in the church. The Board recognized the need to connect, support, equip, nurture and resource the people of this movement. To give immediate identity, the Board adopted a new name for the organization -- The Reconciling Ministries Network. As the Welcoming Movement for the United Methodist Church, the network reflects its Wesleyan heritage of connecting faith communities, campus ministries, local congregations and affinity groups such as United Methodists of Color for a Fully Inclusive Church, Parents Reconciling Network and MOSAIC (Methodist Students for an Inclusive Church). It also honors the diverse ways people want to participate in the movement—some through healing and being in solidarity, others through challenging UMC policy and practice, and others through creating a "church of resistance" – a church within a church committed to developing ministry and resources for congregations and individuals who feel alienated from the denomination because of its exclusive policies.

The Reconciling Ministries movement will gather at a national Convocation July 26-29th, 2001 at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington. Convocation 2001-Revival! will be the largest ever gathering of United Methodists working for the inclusion of all God s children. This Revival, like camp meetings of old, is a place of breathing life into dry bones. Dynamic speakers, embodied worship, and workshops highlighting the many exciting LGBT inclusive ministries around the country will connect, nurture, and train those working for justice.

Founded in 1984, the Reconciling Ministries Network is a national organization of 166 United Methodist congregations, 25 campus ministries, 16,500 individuals and affinity groups which publicly welcome persons of all sexual orientations and gender identities into the full life of the church. For additional information you may contact the Reconciling Ministries Network office at 773-736-5526 or email RMN@rcp.org .

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Marilyn Alexander
Phone 773-736-5526
Fax 773-736-5475
E-Mail Marilyn@rcp.org

3801 N. Keeler Ave. Chicago IL 60641
PH 773-736-5526 FX 773-736-5475

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