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Phone: 973-395-1068 h


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Married February 2, 1974


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[epdionwk] NEWS RELEASE: Voices of Witness Africa Helps Church Keep Commitment to Listen

  • To: Unofficial Diocesan Discussion <epdionwk@yahoogroups.com>
  • Subject: [epdionwk] NEWS RELEASE: Voices of Witness Africa Helps Church Keep Commitment to Listen
  • From: Louie Crew <>
  • Date: Wed, 20 May 2009 10:49:58 -0400
  • Reply-To: epdionwk@yahoogroups.com

This is an outstanding video.  I urge you to order a copy and show it to 
your congregations.    It is far too easy for us to believe that the 
archbishops speak for everybody; it is very important for The Episcopal 
Church to be at the table to speak for those who would otherwise be 
voiceless.    "Voices of Witness" indeed!   God bless Africa.

Many of you know Cynthia Black from her service for several years at Essex 
Fells.   Others know Katie for her outstanding witness under fire for years 
in the Diocese of Fort Worth.

Also, please consider making a donation either online or by mail. To donate 
online, go to
https://secure.groundspring.org/dn/index.php?aid=30549 . Integrity is the 
fiscal agent for this project. Please make sure to click the
"Voices of Witness Africa" button in the Special Projects area. Or, you may 
make a check payable to "Integrity," put "VOWA" in the memo field, and mail 
it to:

620 Park Avenue #311
Rochester NY 14607-2943

All donations are tax-deductible!


Louie Crew, 377 S. Harrison St., 12D, East Orange, NJ 07018 973-395-1068
http://queereye4lectionary.blogspot.com/  Queer Eye for the Lectionary



contact: Rebecca Wilson, 330-524-2067, rebeccaswilson@sbcglobal.net


Voices of Witness Africa documentary tells stories of gay Anglicans

CHICAGO--As long ago as 1978, the Lambeth Conference of Anglican
Communion bishops urged the church to listen to Anglicans who are gay,
lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT). However, as the Rt. Rev.
David Russell, retired bishop of Grahamstown, South Africa, says, ?We
made some very definite decisions that we need to be listening, and
precious little listening happened. There was a huge reluctance to

Now a new half-hour documentary film helps Episcopalians keep the
church?s commitment to listen. Voices of Witness Africa, produced by
Cynthia Black and Katie Sherrod, interviews gay, lesbian, bisexual and
transgender Africans about their lives and their relationships with
God and the church.

Viewers who have followed the plight of GLBT people in Africa will
hear familiar and tragic stories of fear, imprisonment and abuse.
However, they may also be surprised by the support and hope voiced by
some of the film?s subjects, including African Anglican bishops and

?I?m sorry about what the church is saying. God loves you, God loves
you,? says the Rt. Rev. Christopher Senyonjo, retired bishop of West
Buganda Diocese in the Anglican Church of Uganda, who leads a study
and prayer group for gay Anglicans. While acknowledging that speaking
out for GLBT Christians has been ?very risky,? Bishop Senyonjo says
that ?When you know the truth, it should make you free.?

Although the situation for GLBT Africans is dire?two-thirds of African
countries still criminalize homosexuality, according to the
International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission?several people
in the film cite cause for hope.

?Many, many years ago, when the townships were in smoke and people
were dying, we never thought that we would be where we are now,? says
Yvonne Daki, manager of iThemba Lam Center of Inclusive and Affirming
Ministries in South Africa. ?We will have one day a situation where
gay people can speak openly about their sexuality.?

Voices of Witness Africa is being released just before the Episcopal
Church?s General Convention, scheduled for July 8-17 in Anaheim,
California. At the meeting, deputies and bishops will discuss both the
church?s mission in the developing world and the inclusion of gay,
lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. The film is being mailed in
advance to all deputies and bishops. It is also being mailed to all
bishops of the Anglican Communion, including those who lead churches
that are hostile to GLBT Christians.

Near the end of the film, the Very Rev. Rowan Smith, dean of St.
George?s Cathedral in Cape Town, South Africa, offers some words of
advice. ?I would like to say to the church, ?Learn what we have
learned in South Africa, that things like sexual orientation or gender
or race are immaterial before God. God delights in all that God has

Voices of Witness Africa is a production of Claiming the Blessing and
was made possible with support from The Chicago Consultation,
Integrity and many individuals. More information on the film,
including a study guide for use in Episcopal parishes, is available at
www.chicagoconsultation.org and www.voicesofwitness.org.

Currently scheduled screenings include:

May 24: St. Augustine of Canterbury Anglican Church, Toronto, Ontario

May 27: Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Cleveland

May 30: Church of the Incarnation, Santa Rosa, California

June 5: All Saints Church, Pasadena, California

June 6: Christ Episcopal Church, Dearborn

June 7: Episcopal Divinity School, Cambridge

June 8: All Saints? Episcopal Church, Chicago

June 10: Church of the Ascension, Silver Spring, Maryland

June 12: Christ Church Cathedral, St. Louis, Missouri

June 14: St. Stephen?s Episcopal Church, Houston, Texas

To schedule a screening of Voices of Witness Africa in an Episcopal
parish, please talk with Chicago Consultation communications
consultant Rebecca Wilson at rebeccaswilson@sbcglobal.net or

The Chicago Consultation, a group of Episcopal and Anglican bishops,
clergy and lay people, supports the full inclusion of gay, lesbian,
bisexual and transgender Christians in the Episcopal Church and the
worldwide Anglican Communion. We believe that our baptismal covenant
requires this.