Over the past couple of weeks, Unitarian Universalist congregations from across the country have celebrated Pride and the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in a plethora of amazing ways. Here are some shining examples:
Capital Pride Parade in Washington, DC
Elizabeth Fogarty of the UU Church of Arlington says, “What was really wonderful was that it was a whole group of UU congregations coming together for the Pride Parade and Festival. No one congregation took the lead or did all the work. It was truly a shared effort. Not only did we Stand on the Side of Love for GLBT equality, but we reached beyond our individual congregations to do it.”
Marching on the Side of Love in Iowa
The UU Fellowship of Ames and the First Unitarian Church of Des Moines joined together to march with their Standing on the Side of Love banners at the 2011 Pride March. Between the two congregations, they had 132 participants, wow!
Third Annual Gay Rights March in Racine, Wisconsin
Olympia Brown UU Church and the LGBT Center of Southeast Wisconsin co-hosted Racine, Wisconsin’s third Gay Rights March in honor of Pride Weekend. OBUUC minister Tony Larsen says that the congregation organized the first march in 2009 in honor of the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. They specifically tailored it to be a “gay rights” event instead of a “pride” event to make it safe space for community members who may not be out to participate.
The event had interfaith participation from a local Episcopal church and Mayor John Dickert even turned up to give a speech and issued a proclamation declaring June 26, 2011 as “Gay Rights Day” in Racine. It was also the inaugural event for the congregation’s brand new Standing on the Side of Love banner!
For more photos and video of the event, check out the local news coverage.
Standing on the Side of Love with Ugandans in Georgia
Congregations in Aiken and Augusta, Georgia celebrated Pride weekend by hosting Rev. Mark Kiyimba, head of the Unitarian Universalist Association in Uganda and outspoken opponent of the country’s recent anti-homosexuality bill.
In Aiken, the Sunday morning service featured Rev. Kiyimba and they later screened the documentary “Homosexuality: Africa’s Last Taboo.” The congregation in Augusta held a “Walking in the Light of Love” service followed by a screening of “Missionaries of Hate.” What a great example of standing on the side of love across oceans and continents!