Cleveland Park Congregational UCC (CPC) amended our constitution on January 28, 2007, to declare ourselves to be an Open and Affirming Church. [Read this Amendment]. Consideration of this important step arose from an appeal from within the congregation, followed by a brief period of discernment which centered primarily on whether we needed an extended process to make this decision or whether prompt adoption of O&A status was required. Support for prompt action to officially welcome the LGBTQ+ community prevailed.
CPC enthusiastically embraces its LGBTQ+ members who enjoy a fully integrated life in our church. LGBTQ+ members participate in all aspects of our church community, including holding key lay leadership positions. Although LGBTQ+ members gather informally on occasion, they have elected not to have any separate group or committee within our very welcoming and very integrated church family.
In the past, CPC celebrated commitment ceremonies and anniversaries for our LGBTQ+ members. CPC was an early supporter of legalizing gay marriage in the District of Columbia. When the marriage equality law finally took effect in March 2010, CPC celebrated one of DC’s first legally-sanctioned gay marriage ceremonies for two of our gay members during our Sunday worship service on March 14, 2010. We made a point of inviting all of our Sunday School children to join us in the sanctuary for this very special wedding.
Since that important day, we have been very proud to celebrate numerous same-sex wedding ceremonies.
CPC participates in DC’s annual gay pride festival, where we join other O&A congregations in outreach to the LGBTQ+ community. As a mission activity, we also contribute to organizations that support LGBTQ+ youth and adults. Periodically, we hold an LGBTQ+ affirmation worship service to highlight, especially for our children, LGBTQ+ concerns and our commitment to vigilantly counter discrimination and exclusion of our LGBTQ+ brothers and sisters.
We are people of extravagant welcome and that welcome extends to all people. If you are LGBTQ+ and looking for a church home and family, our doors are wide open. We look forward to greeting you very soon!