This year we are pleased to offer a series of resources to encourage your observation and celebration of Pride Month.
Resources have been divided into four different sets aimed at helping congregations develop ways in which they can appreciate the 2SLGBTQIA+ community during Pride month, which takes place in June of each year. These resources are far from exhaustive, but offer a survey of possibilities for engaging conversation. Here is an outline of what is on offer.
In the Introduction Folder you will find a document called “Terminology” which offers some help with the 2SLGBTQIA+ acronym and its meanings. In addition, “A Brief History” provides a short overview of the history of Pride in the United States and Canada. Both of these documents are short and are essential: it is advisable to take time with them before proceeding. In addition, you will find “Arts and Media Conversation Starters,” a short curated list of reading and/or viewing that might serve to start conversation in congregational settings around Pride identity.
Ready to Start
These resources are for congregations who have never done this work before and/or may need significant refresher. Here and in the other folders, you will find some documents prepared by Reconciling Works, an American community working for full inclusion of 2SLGBTQIA+ in faith communities. These resources focus on specific strategies for communities to increase their welcome and become actively supportive of the 2SLGBTQIA+ people in their own community and the wider communities around them.
Ready to Engage Further
This folder contains resources for those congregations who have already done some work and are looking to explore further. Again, some Reconciling Works initiatives offer a deeper reach in creating inclusive environments.
Ready to Celebrate
This folder offers worship resources and some support for those looking to be advocates and allies. Here, you will find worship devotional and worship resources including a sermon. The folder also includes a litany, created for a specific moment, but adaptable as a means by which to offer apology and accountability for past harm. Mostly, this folder offers ways to celebrate allyship and to live fully into being visibly affirming (beyond having a Pride flag).
Ready to Go Deeper
Although you will find some theological reflection in any of the folders, this fourth folder offers some resources for thinking and reflecting on identity. Included throughout these folders are essays from the July 2022 Issue of Consensus, a journal published jointly twice a year by Martin Luther University College and Lutheran Theological Seminary in Saskatoon. This particular issue was given over to voices of lived experience. It shares the work of rostered ministers and lay leaders, including those who identify as 2SLGBTQIA+ and those who are allies. Here you will find two theological reflections on Queer experience. In addition, there is “2SLGBTQIA+- Sexuality in Changing Canadian Lutheran Contexts and Identities” by Rev. Karen Kuhnert, a helpful article for providing some important contextual history within our church.
Note also that the Government of Canada offers a webpage that provides “Information and resources related to the Government of Canada’s work to improve equality for 2SLGBTQI+ communities”. Some of the answers to questions that may arise from community conversation may be found here, with regard to legal and political rights and realities.
Wherever you find yourselves, we hope that you will be informed and enriched by your exploration. Thank you for wanting to spend some time in Pride month helping to create a more fully-inclusive church. God’s peace to you as you journey!