Oct. 11 is National Coming Out Day. With all the progress that has been made in recent years to ensure the acceptance and protection of the LGBTQIA+ communities, both in the church and in our country as a whole, you may wonder if something like National Coming Out Day is still relevant and needed. The answer is: absolutely!
Full acceptance is far from a reality in many faith and secular communities. People often still struggle with their sexual and gender identities in silence, feeling isolated and scared. Suicide, especially among younger LGBTQIA+ people is still a tragic reality. Later this year we will observe “Trans Day of Remembrance” to honor the memories of those trans individuals who have died in the past year, some from violence and some from suicide. Anti-LGBTQIA+ legislation is being introduced across the country, especially targeting young people. The struggle is far from over.
We in the LGBTQ Commission of the diocese want to encourage every parish and every member of the diocese, lay or ordained, to “come out” on 10/11, even if you are a straight ally! By proclaiming your support and acceptance of everyone on the rainbow spectrum, you may help an individual feel less alone. You may even inspire hope! Who knows – you might even save a life!
We’ve included a link to some resources you might find helpful. Include a prayer in the Prayers of the People this Sunday or next. Put a note in your bulletin or in your weekly email. Showing visible support is the best way to start!