Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Transgender Rights Forums in Queens and Brooklyn

There are two forums in the NYC area that will be discussing the violent hate-crimes that have recently happened, especially towards transgender people in our community.  ESPA Pride in the Pulpit has asked us to share this information.

Transgender Hate Crimes: Victims, Their Families and Advocates Speak Out!
Wednesday October 7th, 7:00 PM
Brooklyn Law School’s Forchelli Conference Center
205 State Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Queens Transgender Rights Forum:
Tuesday October 13th 7:00 - 9:00 PM
Queens Pride House
76-11 37th Avenue. Suite 206
Jackson Heights, New York

Friday, September 25, 2009

[PR Integrity USA] - Integrity President to be Honored by Diocese of Los Angeles

Outgoing IntegrityUSA President Susan Russell will be honored on Sunday 27 Sept by being named Canon in the Diocese of Los Angeles. Susan has appeared on countless panels and national broadcasts, advocating eloquently and tirelessly for the full inclusion of gay men and lesbians in the Church. Bishop Sergio Carranza will preside at the service, which begins at 4 p.m. Canon Jim White will preach. The evensong and reception are open to all.

IntegrityNYC joins many in thanking Susan for her hard work in this Church and with inter-faith collaborations. We also join in congratulating Susan and the people of the Diocese of Los Angeles.

The following is a Press Release from Integrity USA as posted on "Walking With Integrity" on Friday, September 25, 2009 - Original Post.

September 25, 2009

The Reverend Susan Russell, Integrity's soon-to-be past-president, will be made an honorary canon of the Diocese of Los Angeles in recognition of her advocacy for the full inclusion of LGBT people in the work and witness of the Episcopal Church at a festival Evensong on Sunday, September 27 at St. John's Cathedral.

“Susan is a major opinion maker in the Episcopal church and her steadfast ministry has made history in this denomination. We celebrate the recognition of her work, dedication, and grace with the Diocese of Los Angeles,” said the Reverend David Norgard, newly elected Integrity President. Norgard's three year term as president of the 33 year old Episcopal LGBT advocacy organization begins on October 1st when Russell steps down after six years in office.

"As a native of Los Angeles and a daughter of this diocese," said Russell, "it is a high honor to be recognized in this way by the church of my birth and baptism. But more than just a recognition of my ministry, I hope that Sunday's service will be be a beacon of hope to all LGBT people who wonder if that sign outside saying "The Episcopal Church Welcomes You" really means it. Because in the Diocese of Los Angeles, we do."

"I am deeply grateful to be part of a diocese that sees activism as an asset and does not shy away from being a prophetic voice on behalf of "the least of these" who Our Lord calls us to serve in His name. We have come very far indeed from the church I grew up in -- where girls couldn't be acolytes, much less priests or honorary canons! But there is still much work to do -- and I look forward to all that we will do together here in the Diocese of Los Angeles as we move forward together into God's future."

Russell currently serves as a Senior Associate at All Saints Church, Pasadena. Ordained in 1996, she served congregations in Altadena and San Pedro prior to joining the All Saints staff in 2002. In addition to her tenure as Integrity President, she also served as a member of the National Board of the Episcopal Church Women (2000-2003), is a member of the Human Rights Campaign's Religion Council and serves as a spokesperson for California Faith for Equality. In 2008 she was featured in the award-winning short documentary film "The Constant Process" -- produced and directed by Mormon filmmaker Douglas Hunter.

The Rt. Reverend Sergio Carranza will preside at the 4:00 p.m. service, which will include music by the St. John's Choir and a sermon by Canon Jim White. St. John's is located at 514 W. Adams Blvd, Los Angeles 90012.

For further information contact:
Louise Brooks, Communication Director
Integrity USA -- 626.993.4605

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

TransEpiscopal: Today, in Your Hearing

From TransEpiscopal:
As Congress gears up to begin hearings on the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA) tomorrow (September 23, 2009), I am grateful to recall how decisively The Episcopal Church declared its support for transgender civil rights in general, and a fully inclusive ENDA in particular, this summer at its 76th triennial General Convention.
Continue Reading HERE.

Monday, September 21, 2009

iNYC Celebrates Strides at General Convention

IntegrityNYC hosted a Solemn Eucharist at St. Luke in the Fields Church in Manhattan's historic Greenwich Village. About 60 people from across New York City and New Jersey gathered in thanksgiving for the strides made this summer by the Episcopal Church's General Convention on LGBTQ issues.

The Rt. Rev. Catherine Roskam, Suffragan Bishop of the Diocese of New York, presided; David Casey (Grace), Convener of IntegrityNYC, preached; The Rev Hugh Grant, Curate, and The Rev Caroline Stacey, Rector (St. Luke's) assisted; The Rev. Dn. Kent Curtis (All Saints), served as Deacon; The Altar Guild and Acolyte Guild of St. Luke's offered their time and talents in the service; Shauna Leeks (St. Barts) and Michael Cudney (Holy Apostles and iNYC Steering Committee) read the lessons. Ms. Leeks, Wayne Seifried (Ascension), Chap Day (St. Luke's, iNYC Steering Committee, and Province II Coordinator Elect), and Michael Mallon (St. Luke's and iNYC Steering Committee) served as Ushers; and John Bradley (St. Lukes and Polyhymia) and David Shuler (St. Luke's) provided music.

"America is not the same place it was 50 years ago...or even 10 years ago; and neither is the Episcopal Church" proclaimed David Casey. "When we get All the Sacraments for All the Baptized, we will still not be done! We will still have to deal with homophobia and hetero-sexism in the same way that Women in the Church are still facing Sexism and People of Color in the Church are still facing racism." pulling from the Gospel of Mark, David pointed to the marginalized youth, especially those outside of the Church who will still need our help, support and love.

A collection was taken in honor of "The Church". The Church is a ministry offered by St. Luke's to the LGBTQA Youth in Greenwich Village. Greenwich Village is a destination for thousands of LGBTQA young people who come from all over the city and beyond looking for a safe place to express themselves without fear of homophobic violence or moral condemnation. In 2001, St. Luke’s began opening their doors to these young people on Saturday nights by offering a hot meal, workshops in the visual and performing arts, and the services of social workers and caring adult volunteers. Today the program serves 20-30 young people each week and more than 600 youth ages 14-21 are currently enrolled. The Reverend Mary Foulke, who oversees the program, estimates that at least 1/3 of the attendees are homeless.

An intimate reception followed in St. Luke's Laughlin Hall. Pictures were taken by Jon Nally.

The Rev. Hugh Grant and David Casey greet attendees.

The iNYC Steering Committee and Bishop Roskam
L-R: Chap Day, David Casey, The Rt. Rev. Catherine Roskam, Michael Cudney, Marlin Mattson, and Michael Mallon (not pictured Rachel Furer, Dale McNeil)

Monday, September 14, 2009

Celebratory Eucharist - 20 Sep, 4pm - St. Luke's

Sunday, 20th September 2009 (4:00pm)
Church of St. Luke in the Fields
487 Hudson St (at Grove)

This Summer General Convention passed some amazing resolutions.

IntegrityUSA was there the entire time advocating among the delegates to do the right thing, and they came through!

iNYC is hosting this Celebratory Eucharist in thanksgiving for these resolutions and in gratitude to the Diocesan delegates who helped make these strides possible!

This is our time to Celebrate the welcoming and affirming Episcopal Church in our own area! Come join us!!!

Celebrant: Bishop Roskam, Diocese of New York
Preacher: David Casey of iNYC
Acolytes: St. Luke in the Fields
Music: John Bradley and David Shuler

The Resolutions:
C056 – Authorizes “generous pastoral support” for blessing marriages, unions & partnerships and collection of liturgical resources for consideration at GC2012
C048 – Urges support of fully inclusive ENDA legislation pending in Washington
D012 -- Support for Transgender Civil Rights
D025 – Supports inclusive ordination processes for ALL orders of ministry
D032 -- Non-discrimination clause including gender identity and gender expression for lay employees
D076 -- Support for immigration equality for gay couples
D090 -- Church paper work to be made more accessible to flexibility in gender identity and pronoun preference
C023 – Urging support for repeal of DOMA (“Defense of Marriage Act”) passed in Deputies and was referred by Bishops to Executive Council – where we expect affirmative action will be taken to take the voice of the Episcopal Church to Washington on this important issue.

Please RSVP Below:

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

In the News - Congregation Embraces Transgender Minister as His Secret is Revealed

The Portland Tribune, Regal Courier
By: Christine McFadden
Date: 30 Aug 2009
PORTLAND - The Rev. David Weekley grows uncomfortable in his chair.

As soon as he raises the topic of gay rights to his conservative clergyman friend one day at lunch, he knows it’s a mistake.

He knows that the United Methodist Church long ago retained the right to turn away openly gay clergy members.

So Weekley listens to his friend espouse the opinion of the church, and buries his secret deeper. No one can ever find out that Weekley, a married father of five in Southeast Portland and a Methodist clergyman of 27 years, was born female.

Until now, there has been just one openly transgender Methodist clergyman in the U.S. to retain his ordination (That man, Drew Phoenix, 50, had his ordination challenged by members of the church after coming out publicly in 2007 to his congregation in St. John’s of Baltimore United Methodist Church in Maryland.)

Today, Sunday, Aug. 30, Weekley – who leads the congregation at the Epworth United Methodist Church in the Sunnyside neighborhood in inner Southeast Portland – became the second.

Read the full article at theRegal Courier

August 2009 Mixer - A Success

iNYC: IntegrityNYC had a good turn out last night at the August Mixer at Nowhere Bar. Thanks to all that were able to make it! There was a good dozen of us who hung out almost to 9pm. If you missed it, don't worry we will have more events like this in the future.

And speaking of that: We do have a Celebratory Eucharist planned for 20 Sep at 4pm at St. Luke in the Fields. We have an Episcopal presence (details to come shortly), and all we'll lack is YOU.

If you are interested in helping with the Eucharist, we will be looking for Readers, Ushers and some volunteers for the Choir. Email Chap Day to volunteer, or for details.

Please save the date, and expect to see a Socializr, Facebook invitation soon.