Momentum Builds for the October 11 Event
San Francisco, CA, September 24 – 70 religious leaders added their names this week to the growing list of endorsement for the National Equality March. The March has provided leaders from America’s broad religious spectrum a vehicle to demand full and equal protection for LGBT people in all matters governed by civil law in all 50 states.
“Part of what hinders our reality of full federal equality is the notion that one religious freedom trumps another,” said Robin McGehee, co-director of the March. “It is heartwarming to highlight that there are multiple areas of faith, within many different religious communities, that believe in full equality.”
Just as there are LGBT people of faith who worship in nearly all religious denominations and practices, the March has gained growing support from religious leaders within many of the nation’s religions and faiths. “In every case in this country's history when misguided church teaching was used to justify prejudice and discrimination it has been judged as a moral failure of our society.
The greatest obstacle to reaching full civil equality for LGBT American’s today is this same kind of religion-based bigotry”, said Mitchell Gold, founder of Faith In America. “ The National March for Equality gives all people of faith an important opportunity to speak out about this injustice and the irreparable harm it creates in our lives…and to say the time to end the harm is NOW.”
The Rev. Peter Morales, president of the Unitarian Universalist Association, gave the March a resounding endorsement, “The Unitarian Universalist Association strongly endorses the National Equality March and the goal of achieving full legal equality for bisexual, gay, lesbian, and transgender people. The inherent worth and dignity of every person is a foundational principle of our Unitarian Universalist faith. Unitarian Universalists from around the country will be standing together on the side of love on October 11th when we will take one more step towards the day when the laws of this country protect the basic human rights of all Americans.” Rev. Morales will preach at a service prior to the March at All Souls Church Unitarian and then gather everyone after the service to join the March route.
Leaders from the faith community who endorsed the March include: Rev. David Bahr, Park Hill Congregational Church UCCPamela Baldwin, Interfaith Alliance of IdahoNelson Bock, Interfaith Alliance of ColoradoRabbi Stephen Booth-Nadav, Aytz Chayim/Tree of LifeDr. Richard C. Bozian, TIA-Cincinnati-First Unitarian ChurchRev. Elizabeth Braddon, Stony Brook Community ChurchDr. Phil Campbell, Iliff School of TheologyRev. Tom Capo, Peoples Church Unitarian UniversalistCarol Carlson, Social Justice Committee of First Unitarian Church of CincinnatiRev. Cynthia Cearley, Montview Blvd. Presbyterian Church Angela Cesa, HospiceRabbi Carl Choper, The Interfaith Alliance of PennsylvaniaRev. Hal Chorpenning, Plymouth Congregational UCCRev. Samuel Chu, Interim Executive Director of California Faith for EqualityDick Clark, St. Timothy’s United Methodist ChurchRev. Paul Collier, First Presbyterian ChurchRev. Greg Cummins, Montview Blvd. Presbyterian ChurchDouglas Cunningham, New Day United Methodist ChurchRabbi Mark Diamond, Exec. Vice President of the Southern California Board of RabbisMaureen Doherty, Episcopal ChurchAnne Dunlap, Comunidad Liberacion/Liberation CommunityRabbi Denise Eger, President of Pacific Association of Reform RabbisRabbi Dr. David Ellenson, President of Hebrew Union CollegeRev. Eric Fjeldal, United Methodist ChurchRev. Vicki Flippin, Diamond Hill United Methodist Church, Cos Cob, ConnecticutRabbi Steven A. Fox, Exec. Vice President of the Central Conference of American RabbisPaul Fraser, Central Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)Rev. Dr. C. Weldon Gaddy, Interfaith AllianceGregory Garland, United Church of ChristDan Geslin, Sixth Avenue United Church of ChristMitchell Gold, Faith in AmericaRev. Galen Guengerich, All Souls Unitarian ChurchElizabeth Gull, Universal Life ChurchSusan Guy, Walnut Hills United Methodist ChurchRev. Debra W. Haffner, The Religious InstituteEdward Hawley, United Church of ChristRabbi Steven B. Jacobs, Chair of the Progressive Jewish FoundationEllen Johnson-Fay, Unitarian Universalist AssociationRabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, Senior Rabbi of Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, NYCNoel Koestline, United Methodist ChurchRev. Eric Lee, President of the Los Angeles Southern Christian LeadershipRev. Eun-sang Lee, First United Methodist Church, Salt Lake CityRev. Mark J Lukens, Bethany Congregational UCC/ LI Chapter of TIAWhit Malone, Collegiate Presbyterian ChurchRev. Matthew J. Mardis-LeCroy, Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ Sister Maureen McCormack, Interfaith Alliance of ColoradoRev. Nancy Nelson, Metropolitan Community ChurchesRichard S. Parker, United Methodist ChurchRev. Emily Peck-McClain, United Methodist ChurchRev. Troy Perry, Metropolitan Community ChurchesDouglas Peters, United Methodist ChurchRichard Pleva, Iowa Conference, United Church of ChristJulia Rendon, Crossroads United Church of ChristBishop Eugene Robinson, Episcopal Diocese of New HampshirePaul Rolig, Humanists of IdahoRabbi David Saperstein Director of the Religious Action Center, Washington DCRev. Susan Russell, President of IntegrityConnie Ryan Terrell, Interfaith Alliance of IowaWalter Schenck, United Methodist Church, NY Annual ConferenceRev. Catherine Schuyler, Duluth Congregational ChurchRev. Jeremy Shaver, Interfaith Alliance of Colorado/Park Hill Congregational Church Rev. Charles H. Straut, Jr., New York Annual Conference, United Methodist Church Rev. Mark Stringer, First Unitarian Church of Des Moines; Nadine Swahnberg, UUARev. Neil G. Thomas, Chair of California Faith for Equality Kenneth Thurow, ELCAJoel Warner, United Methodist ChurchRabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus, President of the Central Conference of American RabbisDana Wimmer, United MethodistRabbi Eric Yoffie, President of the Union for Reform of Judaism Ani Zonneveld, Co-founder and President of Muslims for Progressive Values
"For people of faith, the National Equality March is an expression of our most deeply cherished values—that we are called to love, do justice, seek equality and act with compassion,” explains Rev. Debra W. Haffner, executive director of the Religious Institute who also has endorsed the March. “The Religious Institute is proud to endorse the March and the values it upholds."
“The importance of the National March for Equality for LGBT civil rights is being articulated through the Religious and Faith communities,” said Rabbi Denise Eger, president of the Pacific Association of Reform Rabbis. Jewish national leaders and faith leaders understand that equality and justice stem from the message of welcome and love. We are joining together to lift up this message of full civil rights.”
To date more than 250 notable leaders from the arts, entertainment and media industries as well as political leaders, elected officials and community activists have endorsed the March and are urging people to join them and make their way to Washington.
For more information about EAA and the NEM, and for a full list of endorsements, visit: www.equalityacrossamerica.org <http://www.equalityacrossamerica.org>