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Please sign this petition for HR 998, the “Student Non-Discrimination Act”

We are all asked to sign a number of petitions each year in relation to various advocacy efforts. This petition for H.R. 998, the “Student Non-Discrimination Act, is extremely important for the welfare of LGBT youth across America. Please sign and share.

You can also send a note to your United States representative or senator at POPVOX.

Brent Childers
executive director

Global Justice Institute Executive Director Rev. Pat Bumgardner Interview: December 17, 2011

Listen to the Rev. Pat Bumgardner, click on the link to view video.

Global Justice Institute Executive Director Rev. Pat Bumgardner Interview: December 17, 2011

Global Justice Institute Executive Director Rev. Pat Bumgardner Interview: December 17, 2011

Rev. Pat Bumgardner, Executive Director and Board Chair of the Global Justice Institute, a nonprofit international human rights group, on the Obama administration’s new and unprecedented efforts to address the on-the-ground reality of daily life for oppressed sexual minorities in many parts of the world. She is also Senior Pastor at Metropolitan Community Church of New York. Learn more about the Global Justice Institute here:http://mccny.org/wordpress/resources/global-justice-institute/

To download this audio, click here:http://stateofbelief.com/audiofiles/State_of_Belief_121711_Pat_Bumgardner.mp3

To read the transcript, click here:http://stateofbelief.com/component/content/article/369

Listen to the entire December 17th, 2011 State of Belief Radio program here:http://stateofbelief.com/show-archive/368-december-17-2011

Hear Rev. Pat Bumgardner’s previous appearance on State of Belief Radio here: http://stateofbelief.com/show-archive/266-december-25-2010

Share your thoughts on this topic on our Facebook page here:http://www.facebook.com/StateofBelief

URGENT: Stop New Hampshire from abolishing marriage equality

T

Watch Craig’s powerful video – then, join him in telling the NH legislature to keep this disastrous bill from ever becoming law. Time is running out before the vote starts.


Watch Republican Craig Stowell explain why he’s standing up for his gay brother, Calvin.

Our team has been working around the clock in New Hampshire to stop this bill from passing – with phone calls, door-to-door canvassing, and meetings with legislators – but it’s just not enough. We need to show New Hampshire that the rest of the country is watching.

You don’t need to live in New Hampshire to know what’s happening there is wrong. You don’t need to be a Democrat or a liberal either. We all have a stake in equality, so we’re calling on the whole country to rally against the hate unfolding before our eyes.

And you need to be heard, now – before the legislature casts its first votes.

Despite national polls showing majority support for marriage equality – including more and more pro-equality Republicans like Craig – not a single Republican presidential candidate spoke out against the New Hampshire bill while campaigning in the state’s primary.

It’s cowardice, plain and simple, and it’s not going to stop until we make legislating bigotry a losing proposition.

Watch Craig’s moving dedication to his brother and then sign our petition to the New Hampshire state legislature.

With your help, we’ll send a message to right-wing politicians everywhere, and make sure this terrible bill never gets enough votes to become law.

For all our families,

Kevin Nix
Campaign Media Director

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

This link is specific to you, so please take action before you forward to your friends. Having trouble clicking on the links above? Simply copy and paste this URL into your browser’s address bar to reach the action page:
https://secure3.convio.net/hrc/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=1309

© 2012 The Human Rights Campaign. All rights reserved.
Human Rights Campaign | http://www.hrc.org/
1640 Rhode Island Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036-3278
Phone: 202-628-4160 TTY: 202-216-1572 Fax: 202-347-5323

Christmas 2011

Something You Can Do for Global Justice Today

TORTURE IS A MORAL ISSUE

Dear Friend,

Despite significant opposition from groups across the political spectrum (far left to far right) and a concerted effort by those of us in the faith community, Senate and House negotiators have drafted a final version of the National Defense Authorization Act that includes specific authorization for the use of long-term indefinite detention without trial.  The same bill also includes provisions that will make it more difficult to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay.  Both supporters and opponents of these provisions have argued that the bill would allow for the indefinite detention without trial of American citizens captured in the United States who are suspected of an affiliation with terrorism.

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is on the verge of passing Congress with these provisions intact.  The only way to stop these provisions from becoming law is for President Obama to veto the bill.  He has previously threatened to veto it – now it is time for him to follow through.

Please contact the President and tell him that you support his vetoing the NDAA.

If you use Twitter, please Tweet: @whitehouse No indefinite detention; no Guantanamo: #VetoNDAA http://bit.ly/tvLNUi @NRCATtweets

If you can, please call President Obama at 202-456-1111.  You can say something like:

“Hello.  I’m _______ from _______.  I am a supporter of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture, and I am calling to ask President Obama to veto the National Defense Authorization Act.  I don’t think that we should pass legislation allowing indefinite detention or making it harder to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay.”

Finally, you can also email President ObamaYou can find a model email here.

Thank you for contacting President Obama.  A presidential veto is the last opportunity to stop this dangerous legislation.

Sincerely,

Linda Gustitus, President
Rev. Richard L. Killmer, Executive Director

Bill to provide benefits to domestic partners returns to Senate

source: http://federaldaily.com/articles/2011/11/29/bill-to-provide-benefits-to-domestic-partners-returns-to-senate.aspx?s=FD_301111

By FederalDaily Staff
Nov 29, 2011

Two Senate leaders this month reintroduced a bill to provide health and other benefits for domestic partners of federal employees.

Under the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act, sponsored by Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Ranking Member Susan Collins (R-Maine), same-sex domestic partners of federal employees living together in a committed relationship would be eligible for health benefits, long-term care, family and medical leave, and federal retirement benefits.

The bill specifies that employees and their domestic partners would be subject to the same obligations that apply to married feds and spouses, such as anti-nepotism rules and financial disclosure requirements.

The two lawmakers have introduced the bill in the last two Congresses; the measure won the approval of the Governmental Affairs Committee in 2009.

“We repealed the ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ policy in the military because we want the best men and women America has to offer to defend our country,” Lieberman said in a statement. “The same is true for federal employees: We want to attract the best men and women possible to serve in federal government.”

Collins called the changes outlined in the bill “fair policy and good business practice.”

“Today, health, medical, and other benefits are a major component of any competitive employment package,” she said. “Among Fortune 500 companies, for example, domestic partner benefits are commonplace.”

According to a 2009 UCLA Williams Institute study cited by the sponsors, more than 30,000 feds live in committed relationships with same-sex domestic partners who are not federal employees.

Please contact your Senator and demand that this bill passes.

Click on the link below to find out how to contact your Senator.

http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

MCC Headline News – Nov. 10, 2011

Headline News
Tearing Down Walls. Building Up Hope.
 

WAD2011 logo

1 December 2011

World AIDS Day is quickly approaching.  If you are like me, you had probably hoped we would have a cure by now and that it was accessible to all.  Sadly, that is not the case.  We are still dealing with an incredibly devastating disease where millions are infected and unable to get the treatment they need.  Governments are cutting spending, and the economic crisis has hit the most marginalized the hardest.  World AIDS Day reminds us to not get complacent.  The first World AIDS Day happened because of a Metropolitan Community Church. Rev. David Farrell, then pastor of MCC San Diego, had the very first service marking a week-long prayer vigil focused on remembering and praying for those infected with, living with, and those who had died from HIV/AIDS. Click here to read more by Rev. Elder Diane Fisher, Director of Outreach.

Click here for a video from our Moderator, Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson. We encourage you to use it during your worship service.

Click here for prayers written by members of our Outreach Health & Wholeness Team.

Click here for UNAIDS’ Strategy Goals by 2015, as referenced in Rev. Elder Fisher’s letter and Rev. Elder Wilson’s video.

Click here for more information about World AIDS Day.

Click here for the official WAD campaign website.

Click here for resources from the official WAD campaign. For resources specific to people of faith, click here.

Tweet with hashtag #WAD2011.

 

 

2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat
(Application Deadline Extended)

 

LMR 2012 logo

16-19 January 2012

DaySpring Conference Center

Ellenton, Florida

What is that nagging sensation??

Is the Holy Spirit urging you to join with others who want to change lives and change history?
Are you in need of inspiration and re-direction in your ministry, whether as a layperson or as clergy?
Would you enjoy hearing Rev. Elders Nancy Wilson and Don Eastman tell unpublished stories of MCC folklore?
Have you always felt a call beyond the local church to connect the global to the local?
THEN JOIN US . . .
Click here for details about the 2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat and to learn how to apply. Application must be received by 1 December 2011.

 

Registration Now Open for
Next L.E.A.D. Retreat
LEAD logo

The Office of Formation and Leadership Development is pleased to announce the second L.E.A.D. retreat, 17-20 February 2012. The L.E.A.D. (Laity Empowered for Active Discipleship) Certificate Program provides MCC laity with an opportunity for spiritual growth and the development of leadership skills. Persons who complete the L.E.A.D. Certificate will be placed on a Leadership List available to Elders, Senior Staff, and MCC Clergy for the purpose of creating a leadership pool from which to choose trained laity to serve in leadership positions in MCC at the local, denominational, and international levels.

To participate in the upcoming L.E.A.D. Retreat, individuals should complete the program application found here: L.E.A.D. App link. The cost of the retreat is $475 USD, which includes tuition, three nights’ lodging, and all meals. The location of the retreat at The Balcones Retreat Center, Marble Falls, Texas, is accessible from either the Austin or San Antonio airport. The deadline for applications to the program is 6 January 2012.

The L.E.A.D. Manual, which explains the program in more detail, can be obtained here: L.E.A.D. Manual link. To access our L.E.A.D. Brochure to print for your church, click here.

For questions about the L.E.A.D. program, contact either L.E.A.D. Coordinator: Barry Hundley via or Nancy Maxwell.
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Making Headlines!
World AIDS Day (1 December 2011)
2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat
Registration Now Open for Next L.E.A.D. Retreat
International Transgender Day of Remembrance (20 November 2011)
We Congratulate MCC of Greater St. Louis!
Governing Board Webinar

 

International Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR)
TDOR2011 banner 20 November 2011


With the International Transgender Day of Remembrance falling on a Sunday this year, we want to encourage each of our churches to participate. Rev. Elder Diane Fisher and Angel Collie have created a new TDOR Liturgy piece for your use in worship and/or in a special service.

Click here for more information and for a list of international events, as well as how to submit your event.

 

We Congratulate MCC of Greater St. Louis!

MCCGSL HSTS 2011 Finale

I was proud to be a Governing Board member witnessing MCC of Greater Saint Louis’ choir participation in Verizon’s “How Sweet the Sound” Finale on October 28 at Los Angeles’ Staples Center. There were nine choirs in this national gospel choir competition from various parts of the USA. It was an honor for MCCGSL to represent their geographical region, as well as MCC, in this event. The choir was commended for its diversity. There were about 50 MCCers in the audience to show our support. Thank you and congratulations, MCCGSL, for your achievement! – Rev. Onetta Brooks

HSTS 2011 Troy & Phillip

Visit the MCCGSL website
to read the press releases and watch a video of their regional performance, which won them the top prize of $10,000 USD!

 

 

Governing Board Webinar

If you missed the State of MCC webinar presented by the Governing Board a couple weeks ago, click here to access the recording. There was some great conversation about stewardship and programming resources in the chat window during the webinar. Click here to view a summary of that chat. (Thank you, Bryan Parker.)

2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat

Western Europe/United Kingdom Network


2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat

An important leadership development program is being offered by MCC, and I want to encourage the people of MCC in Europe to apply. The MCC Leadership Mentoring Retreat will take place in Ellenton, Florida (USA), 16-19 January 2012. Transportation can be coordinated from either of the two nearest airports: Sarasota/Bradenton (SRQ) and Tampa (TPA).

 

The application deadline has just been extended to 1 December 2011.

 

As a special incentive, MCC has offered a travel supplement of up to £250 to people from Europe who are selected by the Moderator to participate in the Retreat. Those who are selected to participate in the Retreat and want to receive the travel supplement should contact Rev. Elder Darlene Garner <> as soon as the notice of acceptance is received.

 

 

2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat
(Application Deadline Extended)
LMR 2012 logo

 

16-19 January 2012

DaySpring Conference Center

Ellenton, Florida

 

What is that nagging sensation??

Is the Holy Spirit urging you to join with others who want to change lives and change history?

 

Are you in need of inspiration and re-direction in your ministry, whether as a layperson or as clergy?

 

Would you enjoy hearing Rev. Elders Nancy Wilson and Don Eastman tell unpublished stories of MCC folklore?

 

Have you always felt a call beyond the local church to connect the global to the local?

 

THEN JOIN US . . .
Click here for details about the 2012 Leadership Mentoring Retreat and to learn how to apply. Application must be received by 1 December 2011.

 

 

Network Elder & Team Leader
Rev. Elder Darlene Garner
Skype: darlene.garner
Support Staff
Jason O’Neill
Skype: mccjason

Fellowship Sunday Thank You

A Message from
Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson
Moderator, Metropolitan Community Churches

An MCC 43rd Anniversary Thank You To 2011 Fellowship Sunday Pacesetter Churches

 

Dear MCC Leader:

I have three thoughts on my mind that I’d like to share with you today.

FIRST:

I trust your congregation had a wonderful Fellowship Sunday observance and celebration of MCC’s 43rd anniversary this month!

What a blessing to see so many ways God has blessed and guided Metropolitan Community Churches since that very first service with 12 worshippers in Rev. Troy Perry’s home on 6 October 1968!

By their very nature, anniversaries are times of thankfulness. I am so thankful today that God has called us to minister together as colleagues in this amazing, world-wide ministry that is touching lives in 40 countries around the globe.

SECOND:

I love hearing the many ways our Pacesetter churches observed Fellowship Sunday this year!

If you haven’t already done so already, I’d love for you to write to me and let me know how your church celebrated. What was memorable or unique? Did you have special music or testimonies? How did you receive your Fellowship Sunday Offering? Were you able to use the Fellowship Sunday Offering resources?

I encourage you to take a few minutes to write and share your church’s anniversary experiences with me.

THIRD:

I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to your church for being a MCC Pacesetter Church and for participating in the 2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign!

Please convey my deep appreciation to your congregation for their investment in MCC’s future and in MCC’s growing, emerging international ministry.

Thanks to the generosity of Fellowship Sunday Pacesetter Churches, the MCC International Task Force will be able to hold face-to-face meetings to complete their vital work, and I believe their work will lead to strategies and systems that will strengthen MCC’s global ministry for decades to come.

I’ve also prepared an online video message to say “thank you” for your church’s leadership and generosity:


Click the play button to view video.
(special thanks to Sunshine Cathedral in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, for producing this and many more videos.)
Please feel free to share this video with your church, or post it on your church’s website. Here is the direct link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5V2ipJ9xQ0&feature=player_embedded

As we begin our 44th year of MCC ministry, let me say again how honored I am to serve as Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches and how pleased I am that we are colleagues in this incredible ministry to which God has called us.

Please know that you and your church continue to be in my prayers, and I, in turn, welcome your prayers for God’s blessing and guidance.

As MCC looks to a hope-filled future, I encourage you to hold fast to this promise from God’s Word:

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has

imagined what God is preparing for those who love God!”

— I Corinthians 2:9

 

In the Spirit of Jesus,
Rev. Dr. Nancy L. Wilson
MCC Moderator

 

 

2011 Fellowship Sunday Offering Campaign

We are on our way to our goal of $25,000 USD. It’s not too late to donate, if you or your church has not participated yet.

Ways to Remit Your Donation to MCC:

  1. Send in your Fellowship Sunday offering with your tithe payment and make a note to let us know how much is designated for this offering.
  2. Mail in a check to MCC, PO Box 1374, Abilene, TX 79604, USA. Be sure to note “Fellowship Sunday offering.”
  3. Click the link below to make a donation online.
    Donate Now

Ecumenical Retreat for Gay & Bisexual Christian Men

MCC
Gratitude in Three Movements:
Forgiveness, Acceptance, Thanksgiving
An Ecumenical Retreat for Gay and Bisexual Christian Men
Led by Robert V. Taylor and Chris Glaser
Robert V. Taylor
Robert V. Taylor
Chris Glaser
Chris Glaser
Using a new format to increase dialogue between the co-presenters as well as among the men, we will consider three “movements” of  gratitude, given our proximity to Canadian Thanksgiving in October and American Thanksgiving in November.
The first movement is that of Forgiveness, which helps us “clean house” to make room for gratitude.
The second movement is Acceptance, the practice of welcoming our identities and our experiences.
The third movement is Thanksgiving, giving expression to our gratitude in word and deed.
November 10 – 13, 2011
2495 Fox Gap Road
Bangor, PA 18013
For more information about the retreat, Click Here.
To register, Click Here.
For a full write-up of this program, suitable for posting, Click Here.