AUBURN – There will be a display of the Shower of Stoles for an hour before the 4 p.m. worship on Saturday, Feb. 12, and for an hour following 10 a.m. worship on Sunday, Feb. 13, from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at the Auburn United Methodist Church, 439 Park Ave.

The worship service and display will be in celebration of the first anniversary of becoming a reconciling congregation, open and welcoming to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons. Everyone is welcome for worship and/or to view the collection.

The Shower of Stoles is a collection of hundreds of liturgical stoles from gay, lesbian and transgender persons from 23 denominations in five countries.

Each stole contains the story of a person who is active in the life and leadership of their faith community in some way – minister, elder, deacon, teacher, missionary, musician, administrator or active lay person.

The collection celebrates the gifts of those people who serve God while lifting up those who have been excluded from service because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

The majority of the stoles have been sent by gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender persons themselves. Others were made by churches to honor their members. In some cases a church has sent a stole inscribed only with the church’s name to protect those in their midst who must remain unnamed.

Overall, one-third of the stoles have been received anonymously. A smaller number of the stoles are “signature stoles,” which are covered with the signatures of gay and straight persons to honor friends while protecting their anonymity.

Anyone wanting more information should call Pastor Rich at 782-3972 or Marty Elkin at 388-2979.


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