We Are A Welcoming Congregation
Accepted Articles at Annual Meeting May 16, 2010
Article 1 for vote:
We, the members of First Church and Parish in Dedham , MA , commit to being a Welcoming Congregation.
Explanation of Article 1 -
Following the direction of the UUA’s definition of a Welcoming Congregation the First Church and Parish in Dedham , MA commits to the following:
We strive to be inclusive and expressive of all of the many expressions of human sexual identity, affectional orientation and individuality at every level of congregational life—in worship, in programs, and in social occasions.
We do not assume anyone’s affectional/sexual orientation and/or gender identity. Vocabulary of worship reflects this perception; worship celebrates diversity by inclusivity of language and content.
Our programs, including religious education, promote an inclusive understanding of the experience of all people including BGLT persons.
The bylaws and other official documents of the First Church and Parish in Dedham, MA include an affirmation and nondiscrimination clause affecting all dimensions of congregational life, including membership, hiring practices, and the calling of religious professionals.
We will express our openness to the BGLT community both through communications and by actively supporting BGLT affirmative groups.
We offer and support marriages, memorial services, and other family celebrations for BGLT persons.
We welcome BGLT couples and recognize all committed relationships, and affirm caring and affection without regard for sexual orientation.
We seek to nurture ongoing healthy dialogue between all people including individuals of different affectional/ sexual orientations and gender identifications to create a deeper trust and sharing.
We encourage the presence of a chapter of Interweave (Unitarian Universalists for BGLT concerns).
We affirm and celebrate BGLT issues and history during the church year.
We serve as advocates for all people and work to promote justice, freedom, and equality in the larger society by following legislative developments and by speaking out when the rights and dignity of BGLT people are at stake.
We commit to use appropriate methods to advertise our status as a Welcoming Congregation. This may include such means as displaying a rainbow flag (subject to applicable laws and regulations) or identifying First Church and Parish in Dedham as a Unitarian Universalist Welcoming Congregation.
Article 2 - Bylaw addition:
In its membership requirements, hiring practices, and other activities, First Church and Parish in Dedham, MA will not discriminate based on race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, disability, affectional or sexual orientation, age, language, citizenship, economic or national origin and without requiring adherence to any particular interpretation of religion or to any particular religious belief or creed..