Friday, May 25, 2007

St. Andrews flies flag for inclusion

By D'Anne Witkowsk
Originally printed 5/24/2007 (Issue 1521 - Between The Lines News)

CLAWSON, MI--Anyone who has ever driven by St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Clawson and wondered whether or not the church was gay friendly need wonder no longer.

The church has made their support of the LGBT community explicit by flying a rainbow flag outside the church. The pole on the church's front lawn now includes three flags, the other two being the Episcopal flag and the American flag.

St. Andrew's vestry voted to allow the flag in April.

"I want people when they see the flag to know that we are a GLBT welcoming church and it is a place where people who have GLBT people in their family can attend and not sit in the pews and hear their loved ones being bashed from the pulpit," said Charlene Genther, whose partner Gloria Beaune is a member of the vestry. The couple have attended St. Andrew's since November 1994. Last year, Genther lost job her at Marion High School because she was a lesbian.

Pastor Harry Cook said the flag is "merely an outgrowth of what our church has believed forever."

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