ReconcilingWorks is excited to share the good news and invite you to help us welcome our newest and FIRST Reconciling in Christ (RIC) partner in the state of Alaska: Epiphany Lutheran – Episcopal Church (Valdez, AK)!
Their welcome statement reads:
“We invite you to join us to grow in faith as we gather together to ask difficult questions and learn from each other’s journeys. We love, celebrate and affirm who you are, just as you are. We rejoice in diversity of thought, race, class, ethnicity, age, religious background, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, educational background, and physical and mental ability. Centered in Christ, we are committed to being a community of equity and justice that breaks down barriers. We welcome you to join in service, advocacy, and compassionate action through God’s command to love our neighbor.”
The milestone of becoming Reconciling in Christ (RIC) comes after a two-year journey or listening to church members and educating both their faith community and larger community through a ministry team called “Love How You Are.” Hear from the Love How You Are chair, Sam Foist-Swart:
“We are excited to share that our church, Epiphany Lutheran-Episcopal Church in Valdez, Alaska, voted unanimously to be a welcoming, affirming, and celebratory congregation for our LGBTQ+ friends, neighbors, lovers, partners, families, and crushes (the first church to officially adopt an RIC welcoming statement in Alaska!). Congregants have long served this way, but the unanimous vote is a powerful witness”
Rev. Pabo-Eulberg shares,
“This church praises God for those who have participated in this work of inclusion! Quite a few church members have shared how proud they are to be a part of Epiphany because of this affirmation of LGBTQIA+ folks.“
As Epiphany joins the now 950 RIC Partners in the ELCA and ELCIC, who are committed to making an impact in the lives of LGBTQIA+ people, ReconcilingWorks extends our gratitude! These partnerships and public witnesses are life-changing and life-saving.
As we all work side by side, we make our faith communities and larger communities a safer and more welcoming place for all God has named beloved!