For over twenty-five years, St. Bart’s has joyfully celebrated the LGBTQ+ Community during Pride Month. Declaring God’s love for all people has long been an important part of our mission as an Episcopal Church. We affirm and advocate for the LGBTQ+ Community—and all historically marginalized people—not because it is popular, but because it is what the Gospel calls us to do.
This year will be no exception to our well-established pattern. We plan on hosting a mix of virtual and in person events over the course of the coming weeks, and we hope you will join us for as many of them as you feel comfortable.
On Sunday, June 6, we will bless the Pride Flag after the 5 pm Eucharist, held in person in the Church. To attend the service, please register here. You may also arrive on the Church steps at 5:45 in order to participate in the outdoor blessing. Following the service, the Pride Flag will fly over Park Avenue for the remainder of the month.
The Forum will feature a three-week LGBTQ+ Pride series beginning the following week:
On Sunday, June 13, Anthony Pinn, the Agnes Cullen Arnold Professor of Humanities at Rice University, will discuss the legacy of The Reverend Pauli Murray, a civil rights activist, lawyer, Episcopal priest, and trailblazer in the LGBTQ+ Community.
On Sunday, June 20, Austen Hartke, the author of Transforming: The Bible & The Lives of Transgender Christians, will share examples of Biblical passages that support gender diversity.
On Sunday, June 27, The Reverend Dr. Patrick Cheng, Theologian-in-Residence at our neighboring parish St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, will talk about his book Rainbow Theology: Bridging Race, Sexuality, and Spirit.
All of these conversations will take place at 10 am on our YouTube channel and our Facebook page. Those who plan on attending the 9 am Eucharist in person will have the opportunity to watch a livestream of The Forum in the Great Hall.
Finally, we are excited to announce that an outdoor, in person Pride BBQ will return this year! We hope you’ll join us on the terrace on Sunday, June 27 from 1 to 4 pm for food, conversation and celebration. This year’s Pride March is mostly taking place virtually, so we will not be able to physically march. However, we plan to display a livestream of the March on a screen so that we can keep abreast of what is occurring virtually. Because of COVID-related regulations and in order to plan appropriately for catering, registration is required. Please register here. Space is limited, so don’t wait!
We hope attendees of the BBQ will stay for the 5 pm in-person Eucharist, which will focus particularly on Pride. Separate registration will be required. Our 9 AM in person Eucharist and 11 AM livestream Eucharist that day will also touch on Pride themes.
Of course, the LGBTQ+ Community will continue to gather for brunch on Zoom each Sunday (except June 27) at 2 pm. If you haven’t yet joined us, we hope you’ll stop by at some point soon.
We are thrilled that the improving COVID-19 situation will allow us to hold two in-person gatherings for Pride this year. Whether we see you in person or online or both, we can’t wait to celebrate with you!
The LGBTQ+ Community Pride Steering Committee
Manny Rodriguez-Leach, Associate for Welcome and Parish Life
The Reverend Peter Thompson, Associate Rector for Formation and Liturgy