‘Trans youth lives matter’: UCC leaders commit to love and justice in action amidst anti-LGBTQ bills
Siblings in Christ,
We are in the midst of a pivotal moment in our shared story. The well-being of transgender and non-binary youth is being debated in legislative sessions across the United States. As of March 3 there have been 385 anti-LGBTQ bills introduced, with 108 of these bills aiming to end gender affirming healthcare for trans and non-binary youth. This places more than 54,000 trans youth actively taking life-saving gender affirming medical care at risk.
This is the highest number of anti-LGBTQ bills ever introduced in a single legislative season.
The Indiana-Kentucky Conference UCC, host for General Synod in June, faces a collective of 20 anti-LGBTQ bills. No state is left untouched by these attacks on trans siblings personhood. It is critical that we name the horrific nature of these policies for what they are: violent attempts to disrupt God’s creation in bloom.
Trans youth are sacred members of our collective kin-dom. Now more than ever, trans youth need us. And, in this rupturing moment of violence, our Christ-centered response can be one of returning to abundance that God gives us to flourish.
Through tender love and just action, we will continue to be a beacon of love for our trans siblings. The light of Christ, of which we hold dear, will not diminish here. We remain committed to speaking faith-based truth and offering care for trans siblings within our country and globally.
Health and Wholeness Ministries is diligently working to create resources for our congregations who may be wondering how to care for trans siblings. A digital toolkit providing step-by-step guides will be released in April. You can access our current offerings, right here.
For our trans and non-binary youth, know the United Church of Christ acts in solidarity with you. You are a beloved child of God, created with vibrant love and intention. Within your body rests a sacred offering of God’s multitude. You belong here. We see you. And, we love you!
The love of Christ comes in many forms so if you’re wondering how to take action right now, here are a few entry points:
- Learn who your Legislators are at the State and Federal levels of government – and get to know them! Use this tool on the UCC website to look up contact information.
- Review these Advocacy 101 tips, and get involved by emailing, calling, or visiting your legislators asking them to oppose any legislative attacks on trans youth.
- Call on Congress to oppose any legislative attacks on trans youth such as H.R. 734, a bill that would prevent trans youth from taking part in school sports teams that match their gender identity. Send a message to your member of Congress here to oppose this bill, and spread the word.
- Educate others what is transpiring in your state and attend hearings online or in-person at your state capitol as a presence in solidarity with trans youth and parents
- Consider starting or locating a local trans support group within your congregation or community
- Spread the word about the Trans and Nonbinary toolkit and other resources on the UCC’s Health and Wholeness Advocacy website
- Join the UCC’s Justice and Peace Action Network to keep up to date and advocate on these and other justice issues
May we act in love, grace, and justice for our trans and non-binary siblings.
The National Officers of the United Church of Christ: The Rev. John Dorhauer (he/him), General Minister and President The Rev. Traci Blackmon (she/her), Associate General Minister, Justice & Local Church Ministries The Rev. Karen Georgia A. Thompson (she/her), Associate General Minister for Wider Church Ministries and Co-Executive for Global Ministries The United Church of Christ Council of Conference Ministers UCC Health and Wholeness Advocacy Ministries: Rachael Ward (they/them), Team Lead & Minister for Gender & Human Sexuality The Rev. Amy Johnson (she/her), Minister for Sexuality Education and Justice Sherry Warren (she/her), Minister for Women’s and Gender Justice The Rev. Rhina Ramos (she/her), National Coordinator for Proyecto Encuentros Open and Affirming Coalition of the United Church of Christ: The Rev. Katrina Roseboro-Marsh (she/her), Executive Director
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