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Happy Give OUT Day! Affirm diversity with Kinship

Happy Give OUT Day! Affirm diversity with Kinship

UPDATE: The Bolder Giving Foundation has extended Give OUT Day until 11:59 PM Eastern on Friday May 16, 2014. Spread the word! 

Join the rest of the LGBTI community today and Give OUT with Kinship.

A gay former Adventist still cares about how the church treats LGBTI members.

I want to use everything that I have been through to the benefit of others so they know that they are not as alone as I thought I was... When the mindset of the church toward non-heterosexuality yields the bad fruit of division, depression, and suicide, the mindset needs to change.”

An Adventist university student editor shares LGBTI students’ stories with the entire campus.

“This isn’t just an ‘issue.’ It’s a group of people who are the precious, beautiful, wonderfully and fearfully made children of God.”

A young ministerial student in a denomination that doesn’t ordain LGBT people comes out anyway.

“Talking about life and light from the dark space of a closed closet would only perpetuate death... I would have to nurse & cultivate a series of fabrications in order to speak God’s truth. Honesty is important, for myself and others that need to know that God loves them.”

A Kinship leader writes to her church.

“It is not appropriate that the Seventh-day Adventist denomination continues to hold official conferences about Seventh-day Adventist lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people without allowing a range of us to be present, participate, or speak… We believe that love is worth celebrating, and we support all of our members as they grow in grace. We wish our church would do the same.”

A General Conference vice-president reminds the international church that its calling is to love and serve.

“We do not lack the intellectual or moral capacities needed for addressing the dilemmas presented by our topic here in Cape Town. But we do need the conviction, the will, and the wisdom to move forward.

I hope we have committed to the strength to love. After all, Jesus taught that the greatest commandments, upon which all the others hang, are commandments to love God and love other human beings—all human beings.”

A European union conference accepts this calling.

We, as Christians, must welcome all children of God – who all fall short of God’s ideal – into our churches with love. We advise the churches in the Netherlands to fully commit themselves to ensuring that LGBTI individuals feel safe in the church.”

And local churches chart a new way forward.

“Our community welcomes the diversity of humankind, created in God’s image, including those of us who are LGBT. We continue to support the traditional Seventh-day Adventist policy that holds that Adventist church membership is determined locally. Our community is compelled to do this in our commitment to listen, grow, and learn better how to ‘love well.’”

“God's love is broader and deeper than we can fathom. Fellowship and membership in His church should, likewise, be open and generous. The redemptive power of Christ’s love extends to everyone regardless of age, race, class or sexual identity. All are welcome in our church.

“We embrace the challenge of being a diverse community, which encourages dialogue and welcomes questions, as we continue to identify the ways God is at work in all of our lives. We believe this will ultimately enrich us and be a witness for and a foretaste of the kingdom God intends to establish in the earth made new.”

LGBTI and LGBTI-supportive Adventists are telling a new kind of story about our lives, our church, and our world.

Since Christmas, Seventh-Gay Adventists has taken Kinship members’ voices directly into the homes of thousands of people around the world, and hundreds of people continue to download it from the filmmakers’ website. (Watch it free for the rest of this month.)

Since March, more Kinship members have shared videos about what it was like to grow up Seventh-day Adventist, and written letters and articles to challenge and educate the wider church.

We’re all standing up for integrity and compassion, and speaking up for the benefit of our entire community.

We weren’t silent when our brothers and sisters in Uganda, Nigeria, Russia, and India faced new and dangerous anti-LGBTI laws. Students in the U.S. spoke up when LGBTI demonization hijacked their worship service. And an Adventist campus coalition created a safe space for young people to share their experiences, challenges, and resilience.

We’re visible and vocal. We’re growing. And we’re just getting started.

Today is the second annual Give OUT Day and SDA Kinship is participating again. On Give OUT Day each spring, people who believe in the LGBT community’s work on health access, education and anti-bullying, improving the laws that govern us, and reconciling the brethren in communities of faith take 24hrs to donate to the LGBT organizations of their choice.

Thank you for being part of the broadest advance this community has ever made. Please share your stories, your knowledge, your resources, and your time, and help the Kinship community to keep moving forward

Today, please affirm diversity by scheduling a donation to SDA Kinship. Support the development of an Adventist community that is welcoming, learning, and open-hearted.

Give OUT with Kinship and help to tell a new story! Every story matters and every contribution counts.

Thank you!

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