Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 10/5/2018 (628 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
The living apology project comes to Knox Knox United Church is opening its doors to "Iridesce: The Living Apology Project," a national story-gathering initiative looking back at the 1988 vote to not exclude gay and lesbian people from membership and ministry in The United Church of Canada. At the time of the vote it was impossible to foretell where that would lead the church. Now, 30 years later, the Iridesce Project is asking— Where has it taken us? Where is it going? How welcoming has the church been?
"It takes a brave church with an open heart to ask these questions," said project coordinator Aaron Miechkota. "But it’s time. We want to gather these important stories before they are lost forever. It’s a way that we as people with community spirit can learn and grow, with the hope of drawing the circle wide. Because there is room for everyone in God’s great big love."
Iridesce is about collecting stories from people, families and LGBTQ2+ people impacted by the vote right up to today. It is a joint project of the United Church with the social justice group Affirm United. The goal of Iridesce to help the church determine if, and how, it might live into a possible apology, and move forward together.
Iridesce is inviting the wholechurch to participate, not just LGBTQ2+ people, although their voices are an essential part of the conversation. The project is hoping to hear from the community, family and friends, ministers, students in ministry, volunteers, lay people, people who attend the United Church, or who have stopped going to church, from 1925 to 1988 to today. How have you, your faith, your community been transformed by this vote? "We hope a lot of folks will come out so we can remember this time together," Miechkota said.
"We’ll be asking, How was it for you in the years leading up to the vote? Perhaps you were opposed to it. Tell us about that experience for you and your family. Maybe you were overjoyed? We want to know about that too. I think it’s amazing that the people in our church want to listen and share, so we can truly be a place of welcome, and welcome back, for everyone."
You can participate in this event as a sharer or a listener in a safe space, and hear stories from across the country. The event will be held at Knox United Church from May 11 to 14. For more information, please don’t hesitate to email firstname.lastname@example.org.