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Archive for the ‘Current News’ Category

MCC Moderator: “Religion Will be an Excuse to Discriminate”

U.S. Supreme Court allows corporations to have religious freedom-opens the door to discrimination

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson is the Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC), which has ministries in over 40 countries. Dr. Wilson was part of the first LGBT faith delegation to meet with U.S. White House staff in 1979, and she served as a member of President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Today, the Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, global leader of Metropolitan Community Churches, condemned the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court on what is popularly known as the “Hobby Lobby” case. Dr. Wilson said, “The high court of the United States put all of our freedoms at risk today. Conservatives may now seek to deny a range of civil liberties and religion will be an excuse to discriminate.”

“Although this decision impacts women and adds unnecessary steps to accessing reproductive health care, the scope of this decision could be much broader. We are deeply concerned that this decision could turn back the hands of time for generations. Religious dogma may now impact sexual minorities, religious minorities and historically oppressed racial groups. Any group that has been told to ‘stay in your place’ based on the Bible is a target again. We have worked for 45 years to claim civil liberties for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. This decision makes our work harder but we will not rest until justice comes for everyone!”

The MCC Statement of Faith on Women’s Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice states in part:

[MCC] affirms that all people are entitled to the rights and resources that equip them to make their own decisions about their bodies, their sexuality, and their well-being, including the inalienable right of women to control their bodies. We call on all levels of government and civil society to honor and respect those rights. … It is not up to government, civil society, or organized religion to instruct them on what their choice should be. We honor that tradition by calling on all levels of government to ensure that all women have the right to choose their reproductive health care options and the means to exercise those options at their sole discretion.

For the full MCC Statement of Faith on Women’s Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice, click here:
http://mccchurch.org/statement-of-faith-on-womens-reproductive-health-rights-and-justice/

Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson & Rev. Pat Bumgardner sign ad on rape in conflicts and crisis

POLITICO_CHANGE_AD_6-11-14

Young Adults Gathering

YA Gathering 2014 Ad for HomepageRegistration is now open for the Young Adult Gathering in July!! The rate is $50.00USD. Register today! Click here to register 

Led by young adults, this Young Adult Retreat will be an experience of meeting and connecting with your peers, having spirited discussions, and working on strategies for empowering our young adults in their home churches and in MCC’s around the world. The retreat will take place July 17-July 20th in St. Louis, MO. The event will begin at approximately 7:00pm on the 17th and will end at approximately 12:00pm on the 20th. This retreat is intended for only those 18-35 years in age.

We will spend time identifying who we are as a young adult group, working to serve others through a service project, discussing the future of MCC with MCC leadership and taking time for Spiritual Connection.

The host church for the retreat is MCC of Greater St. Louis in St. Louis, MO. MCC of Greater St. Louis has graciously agreed to host our retreat in July and will provide lunch and dinner for retreat attendees on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the retreat. We will end our gathering by attending the Sunday morning church service at MCC of Greater St. Louis.

Our hotel for the gathering is the Sheraton St. Louis City Center Hotel (400 South 14th St., St. Louis, MO 63103). The room rate is $99.00 (+ tax). CLICK HERE to reserve your room today.

To keep costs low and make this retreat as accessible as possible we have set the registration rate at $50 per person.

REGISTER HERE

MCC of Greater Saint Louis

1919 S. Broadway

St. Louis, MO 63109 USA

314.361.3221  |  www.mccgsl.org

 

*Proposed Schedule – times and locations subject to change

Thursday – July 17, 2014

5:00pm – 6:45pm – dinner and registration at MCC of Greater Saint Louis (dinner provided by the church)

7:00pm – 7:45pm – worship – praise service

8:00pm – 10:00pm – EMPOWER – Small Group Activities

10:00pm – 10:30pm – large group gathers back at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

 

Friday – July 18, 2014

8:30 – 9:30am – breakfast onsite at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

9:30am – 10:00am – morning spiritual reflection at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

10:00am – 10:15am – break

10:15am – 12:15pm – ENGAGE – large group activity

12:15pm – 1:15pm – lunch provided by MCC of Greater Saint Louis on-site

1:30pm – 2:30pm – ENGAGE – tools and resources for ministry

2:30pm – 3:30pm – workshop on Sexuality and Spirituality

3:30pm – 5:30pm – large group social activity

5:30pm – 6:30pm – dinner provided by MCC of Greater Saint Louis on-site

7:00pm – 8:00pm – worship – creative service with hands on experiences

FREE TIME and social time the rest of the evening

 

Saturday – July 19, 2014

8:30 – 9:30am – breakfast onsite at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

9:30am – 10:00am – morning spiritual reflection at MCC of Greater Saint Louis (Rachel Meyer Lead)

10:00am – 10:15am – break

10:15am – 12:15pm – EMBODY – create action plans

12:15pm – 1:15pm – lunch provided by MCC of Greater Saint Louis on-site

1:30pm – 4:30pm – service project community outreach (AmeriCorps)

4:30pm – 5:30pm – shower and clean up

5:30pm – 7:30pm – dinner and conversation – gather with MCC Leadership Rev. Mona West (in person),

Rev. Nancy Wilson (via skype) dinner provided by MCC of Greater Saint Louis on-site

8:00pm – 9:00pm – worship – Rev. Mona West will lead us in a service of blessing and communion

FREE TIME and social time the rest of the evening

 

Sunday – July 20, 2014

8:30 – 9:30am – breakfast onsite at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

9:30am – arrive at MCC of Greater Saint Louis for morning worship

10:30am – lead and participate in worship at MCC of Greater Saint Louis

12:00pm – closing prayer and pot-luck lunch

Earth Day 2014

EarthDay2014CELEBRATE THE EARTH 
EARTH DAY OBSERVANCE 
April 22, 2014

 

The first Earth Day was observed in 1970, marking the first occasion when millions of Americans united to demonstrate their concern for the deteriorating state of the environment.  More than forty years later, we join many others from all around the world in celebrating and advocating on behalf of the Earth. The importance of protecting the Earth and her increasingly scarce resources and fragile environment has become ever more apparent as we observe that the Earth’s climate has been warming and that the exploitation of the Earth for fossil fuels in the form of oil, coal, and natural gas has not waned.  In its most recent report last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) found that “the atmosphere and ocean have warmed, the amounts of snow and ice have diminished, sea level has risen, and the concentration of greenhouse

gases have increased.”  Further, the IPCC concludes that the warming trend is unequivocal, reporting that “each of the last three decades have been successively warmer at the Earth’s surface than any preceding decade since 1850.”  Now more than ever, citizens and policymakers need to act to make possible a sustainable future for generations to come.

 

In the face of the reality of rapid ecological crises and degradation, we believe that as people of faith we are called to tend to God’s good creation, seek justice for the vulnerable and oppressed among us, and be good stewards of the bounty and beauty of the Earth.

 

This year, the focus for Earth Day is on Green Cities, an effort to encourage lawmakers, businesses, and citizens to make sustainable investments in clean energy and advocate for public policies that promote energy efficiency and limit greenhouse gas emissions.  The IPCC has concluded that efforts to eradicate poverty and achieve sustainable development and equity can be improved by limiting the effects of climate change.  The Moderator’s Public Policy Team agrees and calls on our elected officials and concerned people of faith to advocate for policies and practices that help us create a healthier environment for a sustainable future for all.

 

On Earth Day, April 22, we can all do our part to act as good stewards and advocates for the environment, ensuring that later generations will be able to benefit from all the beauty and bounties of the Earth.  You can reaffirm your commitment to protecting the environment by volunteering, letting your representatives know that you support sound environmental policies, or making a small lifestyle change to reduce any negative impact on the environment.  If everyone chooses to do something small, together, we can create a better world for future generations.

 

To help you further reflect on God’s earth as gift, we are please to share the following resources:

This statement was prepared by the Public Policy Team of 

Metropolitan Community Churches/The Global Justice Institute, Rev. Pat Bumgardner, Chair.

For more information, contact the Public Policy Team at rmccadvocacy@mccchurch.net.

We do not celebrate the death of Fred Phelps….We choose love

WilsonMeme_nolink
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Instituto “Darlene Garner “ / “Darlene Garner” Institute




Second Trimestrer/Segundo Trimestre 2014
Second Trimestrer/Segundo Trimestre 2014
Flyer del segundo trimestre copia final.pdf
Date Updated: 28 May 2014

Boa notícia! ¡Buenas noticias! Good News!

El Instituto “Darlene Garner “de Formación del Liderazgo Iberoamericano, es un proyecto de la Oficina para el Desarrollo del Liderato  y de la Red Iberoamericana de las Iglesias de la Comunidad Metropolitana. 

O Instituto “Darlene Garner”   de Treinamento de Liderança  Iberoamericana é um projeto do Gabinete do Desenvolvimento de Liderança e da Rede Iberoamericana das Igrejas da Comunidade Metropolitana.

The “Darlene Garner”  Institute for Ibero-American Leadership Formation  is a project of the   Office of Formation and Leadership Development and  of the Ibero-American Network.

El Instituto ofrece: un certificado de pastor laico/laica, un certificado de requerimiento mínimos conducente a la ordenación en ICM, educación continua para pastores ICM y estudios libres

O Instituto oferece um certificado de pastor leigo,  um certificado de requisito mínimo para a ordenação em ICM, a educação continuada para os pastores ICM e estudo independente.

The Institute offers a certificate of  lay pastor,  a certificate of minimum requirement for ordination in ICM, continuing education for  MCC pastors and independent study

Los idiomas del Instituto son español y portugués.  Los profesores recibirán las tareas en ambos idiomas y además intentaremos colocar las lecturas en ambos idiomas.

As línguas do Instituto são o Espanhol e Português. Os professores receberão tarefas em ambas as línguas e também  haverá leituras em ambas as línguas.

The languages of the Institute are Spanish and Portuguese. Professors will receive tasks in both languages and there will also be readings in both languages.

Si usted no está en Iberoamérica pero sirve a la comunidad hispana en los Estados Unidos o Canadá, el Instituto es también su recurso educativo.

Se você não estiver na Iberoamérica, mas serve a comunidade hispânica nos Estados Unidos ou no Canadá, o Instituto também é o seu recurso educacional.

If you are not in Ibero-America but serves the Hispanic community in the United States or Canada, the Institute is also your educational resource.

En este enlace encontrará la oferta completa:

Neste link você vai encontrar as ofertas acadêmicas de 2014:

In this link you will find the academic offerings of 2014:

http://www.gifttool.com/registrar/ShowEventDetails?ID=1668&EID=16998

Global call to protest against Nigeria’s anti-gay laws

Nigerian LGBTI activists are calling on people around the world to hold protests against homophobic legislation

11 FEBRUARY 2014 | BY ANNA D’ALESSIO

goodluckGay people in Nigeria are calling on the world to help them protest against anti-gay laws.

Signed into law by Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan in January this year, the Solitary Alliance is hoping international pressure could help repeal the legislation.

The law prescribes 14 years of imprisonment for LGBTI people in the country, and also criminalizes the witnessing or aiding of same-sex relationships.

Michael Ighodaro, gay rights activist and human rights advocate, said: ‘Aside from the fact that sections of this law are in direct violation of our fundamental human rights – freedom of expression and assembly, freedom to have a private and family life – and set back the provision of healthcare services, they effectively signify that it is open season to attack the LGBT community.’

Since the signing of this law, a number of people have been arrested.

Gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans and intersex people, as well as their friends and family, are living in fear against state-sanctioned violence.

The Solitary Alliance, Nigeria calls on the rest of the world to join in a Global Day of Action on 7 March to stand against homophobia and the violation of human rights.

Ighodaro added: ‘The world has been silent on the passage of the bill, the silence is like saying Nigeria gays are not as important as gays in Uganda or Russia.’

‘That’s why we are calling on everyone to come out on [7 March] to show solidarity to Nigeria’s LGBT community, to show that the world has not neglected us.’

- See more at: http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/global-call-protest-against-nigerias-anti-gay-laws110214#sthash.dTRhsOnj.dpuf

Fin de Año 2013

FindeAno_noclick

¿Te gustaría conocer más sobre las Iglesias de la Comunidad Metropolitana?

¿Qué significa “SER ICM”?

La Iglesia de la Comunidad Metropolitana (ICM) valora la inclusión, la comunidad, la transformación espiritual y la acción social. Estamos comprometidos  a difundir el Evangelio liberador de Jesucristo y responder fielmente al llamado de Dios por la justicia. El contexto de hacer justicia es la creación de la comunidad y la preservación de toda la creación.

Para suscribirte al boletín Headline News – Boletín electrónico Bimestral de ICM – ir aquí.

Para el Círculo de la Moderadora de ICM – Los miembros contribuyen cada mes directamente para apoyar el ministerio y visión de ICM – ir aquí.

Para saber cómo llevar a ICM a tu área enviar un email a revdarlenegarner@mccchurch.net

Para conocer sobre las oportunidades de la Iglesia Virtual de ICM favor de enviar un email  a revdarlenegarner@mccchurch.net

Sí tienes una Petición de Oración favor de escribir un email a prayers@mccchurch.net

Querido(a) Amigo(a) de ICM:

Mientras el año comienza a moverse a su fin, nuestros pensamientos se dirigen a la gratitud y a lo que significa para la mayoría de nosotros(as) –nuestras familias y amigos(as), nuestros compromisos más profundos, el tipo de mundo que anhelamos.

Como ustedes, este es mundo momento en que estoy inundada de peticiones de donaciones navideñas e invertir en formas que puedan bendecir a otros y confirmar mis propios valores de justicia, esperanza y compasión, incluyendo mi iglesia local de ICM.

Hoy más que nunca, me enorgullece el servir cada día como la Líder Mundial de las Iglesias de la Comunidad Metropolitana, un movimiento que salva vidas, que da a luz nuevas comunidades, que abre sus puertas a los refugiados – políticos, religiosos, y espirituales. Una iglesia que apoya a activistas en lugares difíciles y peligrosos, que encarna el amor y la inclusión radical en nuestro mundo dividido. Una iglesia que recientemente fue una poderosa testigo en el Consejo Mundial de Iglesia en Corea del Sur. Un movimiento que desde hace 45 años, ha estado hablando de un Jesús que nos enseña a amar a nuestro prójimo como a nosotros mismos. 

A principios de este año, recibí un correo electrónico de Vittorio, un joven italiano. Quien estaba ansioso por tener conexiones con personas de fe LGBT, sintiéndose aislado y desconectado. El disfruta participar viendo Founders MCC en Los Ángeles, California (USA), y al Rev. Dr. Neil Thomas, virtualmente pero aun anhela tener una comunidad local en la cual participar.

Dejaré que Vittorio hable de la alegría y gratitud que siente por nuestra respuesta a su necesidad:

marchingwithbanner
Vittorio Amaruso (Segundo de la derecha) participa en su primera Marcha del Orgullo mientras asistía a la Conferencia General en Chicago Chicago, Illinois, USA. Sosteniendo el cartel de ICM, incluye de izquierda a derecha: Rev. Elder Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderadora de ICM; Rev. Lisa Heilig, Pastora Interina de MCC of Our Redeemer; Vittorio, y Rev. Marian Cavagnaro, Pastora de Congregational Life at MCC de Palm Beaches.

“Mi nombre es Vittorio Amoruso. Vivo en Italia. Después de largo período de profunda reflexión y sentirme oprimido por la Iglesia Católica por ser gay, Decidí cambiar con la ayuda de mi familia. Solamente quiero ser yo mismo en un lugar que sea llamado IGLESIA. Después de descubrir la presencia de las Iglesias de la Comunidad Metropolitana, pedí a la Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, que me diera una oportunidad de ser parte de la Iglesia ICM en los Estados Unidos. Ella re-envío mi correo electrónico al Rev. Dr. Jim Merritt quien me ofreció la posibilidad de pasar dos meses como invitado Trinity MCC en Gainesville, Florida, descubrí que Dios tiene un amor incondicional y eterno para cada ser humano, incluyendo a las personas LGBT. ICM me salvó y ayudó a comprender el plan que Dios tiene establecido para mí. He sido llamado a ser un Pastor/Ministro de ICM y servir a la comunidad LGBT en Italia, donde ICM no tiene presencia.”

Rev. Jim Mulcahy, pastor de ICM que trabaja en Europa del Este y en Rusia me envió esta nota recientemente:

“Recibí esta nota de una joven mujer rusa que es parte de una familia muy tradicional quienes literalmente la matarían si se enteran que ella es lesbiana. ‘Hi Jim! Permíteme agradecerte nuevamente por tu visita a Moscú. El servicio del domingo pasado me dio la fortaleza de vivir. Es la primera vez que recibo la comunidad en una Iglesia no Ortodoxa. En tus acciones reconozco que Cristo partía el pan. Muchas gracias por tu sermón tan inspirador y lleno de amor, esperanza y sinceridad. Tus palabras me enseñaron a aceptarme y amarme.’ ”

Jóvenes como Vittorio y esta mujer de Rusia nos necesitan, en cada país, incluyendo Estados Unidos. Ellos necesitan que seamos ICM, con un mensaje fuerte e inequívoco, con nuestra celebración inspiradora, nuestras comunidades locales vibrantes y comprometidas con la justicia y la inclusión radical.

christmastree

Así que, para todos los Vittorios y todos los que conocemos debemos ser familia y comunidad para muchos como él, les invito a unirse en el recuerdo de ICM en esta temporada navideña con su generosidad. Cada donativo hará posible el salvar vidas y sanar corazones.

Gracia y paz,

2462[1]

Rev. Obispa Nancy Wilson
Moderadora de la ICM




 

Navidad

MCC_SpanishLogo2012_black

 

 

Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches Calls for Prayer and Personal Discernment as Zimmerman Trial Verdict is Released

Moderator of Metropolitan Community Churches

Calls for Prayer and Personal Discernment

as Zimmerman Trial Verdict is Released

 

Earlier this evening, a jury of six women found George Zimmerman, a now 26-year-old neighborhood watch volunteer, not guilty in the February 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

 

Trayvon Martin was 17 years old when, walking to his father’s home through a residential area in Sanford, Florida on a rainy evening , he was shot in the heart after an altercation with Zimmerman.   Wearing a hoodie and talking on his cell phone, having just purchased a package of Skittles and a can of iced tea, Martin became a symbol of young people of color across the United States who are often targeted by law enforcement, shop owners and other citizens as “suspicious.”

 

Approached and followed by Mr. Zimmerman for this reason, a physical fight ensued that would end in the death of a child, and come to symbolize our nation’s on-again/off-again struggle to accept and value its diverse citizenry.

 

As a community of largely LGBTI people of many religious, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, many of us know what it is like to be viewed with suspicion simply because of who we are.  Many of us still live in parts of the world where our sexual orientations or gender identities are sufficient to endanger our lives.

 

Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, Trayvon’s parents, appealed for peace in the wake of a verdict and said that they could finally see “the end of the tunnel.”

 

The real end of the tunnel for all of us will be on that day when we stand face to face with the Creator God who made us all and pronounced all life good.  In the end, we will be invited to share one table together.  The Gospel of Matthew says people will come to that table from East and West, North and South, meaning from many directions.

 

I know the members and friends of Metropolitan Community Churches may be coming from many directions with regard to this case and all the issues it has raised, from racially motivated animosity to the use of firearms.   People around the globe suffer and struggle daily with the loss of children’s lives to violence — violence that is often times fueled by the failure to value the diversity of God’s creation.

 

Yesterday at the United Nations, another child targeted by violence, a 16 year old girl from Pakistan named Malala, spoke to the world saying that education is the key to a future of peace and good will for all of us.  Shot because she was a girl wanting to go to school in a culture devaluing its female children, she said, “They thought that the bullet would silence us,” but what really happened was that “weakness and fear died…and courage was born.’

 

I urge all of us on this night when many of us may be reacting with shock, disbelief and anger and others with support for a legally rendered verdict, to really search our hearts and minds and spirits for the ways prejudice and fear have weakened our commitment to the prophetic vision of a world where lions lay down with lambs, and little children play safely over adder’s dens.   I urge all of us as people of faith to recommit to the Biblical injunction against taking a life for any reason.   The legal standard for “self defense” can never replace Scripture’s call to love others as God loves all of us.

 

Pray with me this night for the family of Trayvon Martin who, regardless of a verdict, lost a child to fear and violence.  Pray for the day when all of us are at ease in the presence of difference and see only in each other’s faces a brother or sister in Christ.

 

+Nancy

The Rev. Dr. Nancy Wilson, Moderator

Metropolitan Community Churches

 

This statement prepared in conjunction with the Moderator’s Public Policy Team,

The Rev. Pat Bumgardner, Chair.  For more information or to arrange further comment

contact The Rev. Jim Merritt, Public Policy Team Communications, at

.

MCC stands in solidarity with ICM Brasil – Igrejas da Comunidade Metropolitana do Brasil and everyone in Brazil.

Dear leaders, members and friends of the Metropolitan Community Churches in Brazil:

In this important moment of mobilization in Brazil ,I would like to express my solidarity with you and my support of the demands being expressed at the protests throughout the country. Those valuable acts of courage make me feel proud of our people, our brothers and sisters in Brazil. I would love to be there with you to march, requesting not only for “Circuses” (Confederations Cup) to be offered but also for “bread” to be a reality for all (respect and dignity for indigenous peoples, sexual minorities, Afro-Brazilians, the Landless Workers) and to be available on every table and in every household.

Much more that the $0.20 increase in transportation fares is at stake in Brazil. People’s social unrest must be expressed, heard, respected. It shall not be silenced. Governments’ betrayals (independently of their political party) shouldn’t be tolerated by the people anymore.

As an Elder at the Metropolitan Community Churches, I demand in God’s name that the requests and demands of our beloved Brazilian peoples be answered. Brazil is much more than the World Cup. Brazil is much more than the Olympic Games organization that only benefits a few. Now is the the time for Brazil to take the lead, to make itself heard with a strong voice in the world, to demand a government that works with and for the people, not to benefit from them.

Dear Brazilian men and women, the whole world is looking at you, our hearts going to you in solidarity. Your legitimate demands will be able to create a Brazil that can help, support and treat with dignity and respect each and every one of its inhabitants. No one and nothing can stop you from protesting, for demanding that Brazil for which you have fought so hard to build, that so many men and women have worked for to make the country a place of human rights building a more human nation.

We trust that President Dilma’s government will be able to keep up with this historical moment that you are living as a courageous and brave people.

I want our MCC Churches in Brazil to know that during the protests on Thursday, each and every one of our leaders, members and friends will be with you, thinking about you, praying for you, and following any developments.

Another world is possible, a new Brazil is possible, too.

My solidarity and prayers are always with you.

Blessings,

Rev. Hector Gutierrez

MCC Elder