Episcopal Migration Ministries shares ‘Rainbow Initiative’ survey results, seeks participant congregations
Resource webinar set for March 30
After receiving widespread survey response about a new project to support LGBTQ+ forced migrants, Episcopal Migration Ministries is seeking 10 to 20 “Rainbow Initiative” congregations to discern ways to help migrants during Pride activities and World Refugee Day in June.
An informational resource webinar—open to the public and recorded for later viewing—will be held at 12 p.m. ET Thursday, March 30. Register online.
In January, Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) announced The Rainbow Initiative, a direct response to a General Convention resolution expressing support for the protection of LGBTQ+ people forced to seek refugee or asylee status and requesting that EMM highlight those issues and offer information churchwide. A new webpage—frequently updated—offers practical and educational resources and other materials.
A survey launched in February invited participants to share experiences, ideas, resources, and interest related to LGBTQ+ forced migration in the context of The Episcopal Church. The 185 respondents—from 32 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Belgium, Canada, the Dominican Republic, France, and Germany—indicated an especially strong need for stories of LGBTQ+ forced migrants, specific examples of how congregations can help, and liturgical and theological resources.
Information from the survey will be used to provide an initial contact list for Rainbow Initiative activities, redefine project plans to prioritize requested resources, and identify and address the specific interests and needs of partner congregations.
One survey respondent wrote, “Thank you for going ‘against the grain’ … and welcoming me. So many of us go without knowing the love of Jesus in our day-to-day lives, and finally, a church is attempting to bring reconciliation.”
EMM’s goal is to identify interested “Rainbow Initiative congregations” who would commit to ongoing communication with EMM about supporting LGBTQ+ forced migrants in some way during worldwide activities in June focused on the LGBTQ+ and refugee communities.
EMM will work with Rainbow Initiative congregations to discern what kinds of activities would be best for them, and provide them with helpful tools, information, and introductions. For more information about the webinar, or to express interest in becoming a Rainbow Initiative congregation, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more and support EMM’s work.