Heartland Clergy for Inclusion

acceptance from the heart

Human Rights Campaign Supports Heartland Proclamation

July 18, 2011

In their weekly message the Human Rights Campaign supported the Heartland Proclamation:

Good afternoon. 

Every day, I am deeply moved by the many diverse people across this country working for LGBT equality often with little fanfare or resources. 

In Omaha, Nebraska, for instance, an extraordinary group of religious leaders are working to advance the Heartland Proclamation, a document that calls “for an end to all religious and civil discrimination against any person based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression.” The proclamation was introduced on June 15th by Heartland Clergy for Inclusion.  This organization was formed by Christian clergy in Omaha in order to promote LGBT equality in Heartland states from a distinctly and unapologetically Christian point-of-view.  You can read a copy of the proclamation by clicking here.

The effort is being led by the Rev. Dr. Eric Elnes, the senior pastor of Omaha’s Countryside Community Church, and a biblical scholar with a Ph.D. from Princeton Theological Seminary. Before moving to Omaha, Eric worked in Phoenix where he led a 2,500 mile walk from that Sunbelt city to Washington, DC, to promote another kind of Christianity than the one the radical right perpetuates.  In a powerful reclaiming of faith, he met with people along the way who were not willing to allow their faith to become hijacked by the religious right.

 Eric’s leadership has been tremendous. At the news conference kicking off the introduction of the Heartland Proclamation, Eric said, “Silence by many has allowed political and religious rhetoric to monopolize public perception, creating the impression that there is only one Christian perspective on this issue.”  We can’t – we won’t – allow that to happen.

This is one important example of the kind of profound leadership our religion and faith program continues to build and foster across the country.

 Have a great weekend.

 Joe Solomonese

 P.S.  On Wednesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold the first-ever hearing on the Respect for Marriage Act, legislation that would repeal the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which denies federal rights and benefits to lawfully-married same-sex couples.  The committee will hear from several people who have been directly harmed by DOMA, and I have also been asked to testify on behalf of the many members of HRC and the LGBT community who suffer under this unjust law.  

Written by Scott Jones

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Welcome to the Heartland Clergy for Inclusion’s presentation of The Heartland Proclamation. Join us in an ongoing conversation about God’s unconditional love for all people and about advocation of justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons.