Words of Affirmation
Thoughts and accounts from the Affirmation and Equality Ministry
Gresham United Methodist is committed to providing safe space to explore, a place to serve and an atmosphere of healing for those who have been rejected or dismissed due to their sexuality, identity or gender. Unfortunately, communities of faith have been sources of pain and judgement for many in the LGBTQ community. Gresham UMC is dedicated to the inclusion of all who seek to journey with God.
Our social understanding of gender and sexual has changed over the years. As a society we are more aware, educated and experienced with expressions of sexuality beyond the limitations of male and female, gay or straight.
Many still struggle to understand or even embrace LGBTQ issues or individuals. There are still many in the country and the world that advocate laws and practices of oppression. Some states have enacted new laws restricting conversations or activities that highlight LGBTQ issues and concerns. Transgender individuals are the most recent target of hate and violence. As a society, we have a long way to ago to embrace everyone with the love of Christ. We still place judgment before grace, and hate for that which we do not understand before God’s love.
The bible is like a time capsule. It highlights social norms and practices, largely in the Jewish/Hebrew communities over a period of 4000 years. Many norms and practices change within scripture; however, one universal is God’s love to humanity, God’s willingness to walk along side of creation to help us reflect love, grace, hope and mercy. At Gresham UMC, we try to live out the example of Jesus Christ and love everyone. We try to be a place and space that is safety and caring. We do not always get it right, but we continue to commit ourselves to inclusion and living God’s love.