Standing on Holy Ground: Metropolitan Community Churches and LGBTQ-Affirming Religion: A CLGS Exhibition at the GTU Library

Tuesday, November 5th 2019 to Friday, February 28th 2020

The opening for "Standing on Holy Ground: Metropolitan Community Churches and LGBTQ-Affirming Religion: A CLGS Exhibition," will be held between 6 and 8 pm on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, in the library.  The exhibition will be on display through February 28, 2020.

More than 50 years ago, before the Stonewall Rebellion, a group of gay Christians, under the leadership of the Rev. Troy Perry, gathered in Los Angeles in 1968 and founded what was to become Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC), a gay-affirming Christian denomination which has grown to encompass people and congregations from more than 20 countries today.

This exhibition includes a sampling of items from the CLGS Archives Project, which is currently being processed and will eventually be housed at the library.  Including artwork, photographs, denominational publications, and news reports, this exhibition provides the viewer with the opportunity to explore – and to celebrate! – a denomination which was one of the first to embrace and affirm lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people as beloved children of the Divine.

Along with the MCC exhibit,  Mark Thompson's Fellow Travelers photo exhibition is on display. The thirteen portraits of visionaries and spiritual leaders were featured in his book, Gay Soul. Thompson (1952-2016) was a writer-editor for The Advocate from 1975 to 1995. His books on gay culture include the trilogy Gay Spirit, Gay Soul, and Gay Body along with Fire in the Moonlight: Stories from the Radical Faeries; Leatherfolk: Radical Sex, People, Politics, and Practice; and Long Road to Freedom: The Advocate History of the Gay and Lesbian Movement. He was an avid photographer. Thompson died a year after his companion and husband, Malcolm Boyd, an Episcopal priest and an influential gay figure in religion, passed away. The display is part of the Mark Thompson Collection, owned by The Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion (CLGS) at Pacific School of Religion and managed by GTU Archives.

All are invited to the opening reception. The exhibition is made possible by the Jane Dillenberger Fine Arts Endowment Fund and is free and open to the public during library hours.