One of the first 13 US Presbyterian congregations to form the More Light Network in 1983, Westminster has fought for the full inclusion of and end of discrimination against our LGBTQIA+ family. We accept and celebrate the gifts God has given through our varied sexual orientations and gender understandings.
When AIDS was still considered a "gay disease," Rev. Carla Gorrell started Food & Friends which made and delivered nutritious meals to those living with HIV/AIDS at home in Washington and beyond. We housed the ministry for its first 10 years and became known as an inclusive church for the LGBTQIA community.
SaVanna Wanzer became a member and ordained Deacon and we hosted the first Transpride event in Washington DC. We continue to host inclusive annual events in support of the trans community.
From the first 1978 Presbyterian vote against ordaining open LGBTQIA people, WPC fought for a change in policy. We practiced ecclesial disobedience, ordaining out elders and deacons. Finally in 2011, the policy was changed. Victory for an inclusive church.
WPC held the first Holy Union in the 80s. In 2014, the General Assembly finally passed a measure that permits ministers and sessions (local church government), “to use their own discernment to conduct same-sex marriage ceremonies where allowed by law.”
Reverend Harry B. Stock, Westminster Parish Partner, calls them ‘clobber passages;’ those snippets of scriptures from the Bible that condemn homosexuality and the LGBTQIA community, calling it evil and an abomination. His "Scrolls Revealed" seminar shows how these passages have been mistranslated and taken out of historical context.
Westminster is blessed with some of the most wonderful people in the world. About 20% of the congregation self-identifies as LGBTQIA+--some of our longest term couples, parents raising children, strong singles--young and old. Each person has helped us better know the love and justice of God.