“Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.” (1 Peter 3:8 (NIV) )
While the actions of some churches have given Christians a bad name when it comes to LGBT rights, others have worked for decades fighting the good fight toward inclusion for all. Doctrinal and sectarian splits make it difficult to keep score, but the organizations below have, by and large, been in it for the long haul. This list will be updated periodically as new resources become available.
The Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists is the only organization devoted to supporting LGBT Baptists and their allies in the United States. They strive to support churches, organizations, and individuals who are committed to the full inclusion of LGBT Baptists in church life and mission.
This great four-minute video from Believe Out Loud shows some of the basic steps that Christian faith leaders can take to become a welcome and affirming congregation. It includes information and best practices for anyone interested in learning more about ways to make their church more inclusive.
Canyon Walker Connections is maintained by Kathy Baldock, a straight evangelical Christian who has dedicated her life to improving the relationship between faith communities and the LGBT community. Kathy has also organized a social media project called Str8 Apology, is available for speaking engagements, and maintains an extensive list of resources for LGBT Christians and their allies.
Catholics for Equality was founded in 2010 to support, educate, and mobilize Catholics in the advancement of freedom and equality at the federal, state, and local levels for LGBT family, parish and community members.
Dignity USA is a chapter-based nonprofit organization founded in 1973 to serve LGBT Catholics and their allies. They stress the need to provide safe space where LGBT Catholics and their allies can share personal and spiritual concerns, participate in the sacramental life of the Church, and focus on education and social justice issues.
Equally Blessed is an coalition of faithful Catholics who support full equality for LGBT people in the church and civil society.
Fortunate Families ministers primarily with Catholic parents of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender daughters and sons—but welcomes families of all faiths. When parents explore and value their personal stories, they are empowered to share that story with their family circle, their faith community and the larger society.
The Fellowship of Reconciling Pentecostals International is a network of Pentecostal ministers, churches, and ministries which seeks to reconcile all repentant people to God through the full gospel of Jesus Christ, without regard to race, gender, political persuasion, economic or educational status, sexual orientation, nationality, religious affiliation, or any other thing that divides.
Founded by Justin Lee in 2001, the Gay Christian Network (GCN) is a nonprofit ministry for LGBT Christians and their allies. It provides an online community for support, hosts an annual conference, organizes local Bible Study, and maintains a database of welcoming congregations as well as other resources. Its mission statement includes five key priorities which are to promote spiritual growth, cultivate safe community, support allies, educate church communities, and engage the broader community.
Integrity is a nonprofit organization of LGBT Episcopalians and their straight friends. Integrity has been the leading grassroots voice for the full inclusion of LGBT persons in the Episcopal Church and their equal access to its rites. However, advocacy is only one facet of Integrity’s ministry. At the national level and in local chapters and diocesan networks throughout the country, the primary activities are: worship, fellowship, education, communication, outreach, and service to the church.
Founded in 1968 as the first church in the world with a positive ministry to the LGBT Community, Metropolitan Community Churches has been a beacon of hope for decades. MCC Congregations provide support to LGBT people, their friends, families, and allies and continue to do amazing work in communities throughout the world. Reverend Troy Perry, the founder of MCC, presented our first ever Straight for Equality in Faith Communities award in 2012.
Following the risen Christ, and seeking to make the Church a true community of hospitality, the mission of More Light Presbyterians is to work for the full participation of LGBT people of faith in the life, ministry and witness of the Presbyterian Church (USA).
New Ways Ministry is a gay-positive ministry of advocacy and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Catholics, and reconciliation within the larger Christian and civil communities.
The Reconciling Ministries Network is focused on mobilizing United Methodists of all sexual orientations and gender identities to transform our Church and world into the full expression of Christ’s inclusive love.
Working at the intersection of oppressions, ReconcilingWorks (formerly Lutherans Concerned) embodies, inspires, advocates and organizes for the acceptance and full participation of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities within the Lutheran communion and its ecumenical and global partners.
Revolution was started in Phoenix, AZ in 1994 by Kelli Miller, Mike Walls and Straight for Equality in Faith Communities Honoree Jay Bakker. These three saw a desperate need within their community for the love of Christ as it was evident that the church was ignoring and even blatantly rejecting a whole subculture of people based on their appearance and lifestyle. Revolution sought to meet this need through having services that featured bands, DJs, art exhibits, a coffeehouse and guest speakers. You can listen to sermons for free on the church website.
Truth in Progress is a multi-media project dealing with issues of race, sexual orientation, and religion. We take a special look at the similar yet different experiences and histories of the Black Civil Rights and LGBT Rights Movements.
The Coalition provides support and sanctuary to LGBT people, their families and friends; advocates for their full inclusion in church and society; and brings Christ's affirming message of love and justice for all people. The United Church of Christ Coalition for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Concerns is officially recognized by the United Church of Christ as a related, self-created organization.
Welcoming Churches is the database maintained by the Gay Christian Network that includes information about welcoming and affirming churches throughout the country. You can find a welcoming church in your state, register your congregation, and connect with other churches to share best practices.