Since 1974, ReconcilingWorks: Lutherans for Full Participation (formerly known as Lutherans Concerned) has advocated for the full welcome, inclusion, and equity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) Lutherans, in all aspects of the life of their Church, congregations, and community.
In relationships built through outreach and education, ReconcilingWorks shares Christ’s message, the Gospel, which is for everyone equally. ReconcilingWorks advocates for systemic change in policy and practice in church and society, working to alleviate not only the painful symptoms of oppression but also to eliminate its root causes.
ReconcilingWorks also provides a formal process, guidelines, and standards for Lutheran churches to intentionally “come out” as welcoming and affirming of LGBTQIA people. The churches which go through this process are deemed Reconciling in Christ (RIC) congregations. Essentially, these are churches which intentionally and publicly state that LGBTQIA people are welcomed and affirmed as beloved children of God in all aspects of their lives, including their sexuality, gender identity, and intimate relationships.
Churches which follow the Reconciling in Christ process create a public statement of welcome and affirmation toward LGBTQIA people, which is then approved by the congregation, submitted to ReconcilingWorks for approval, then publicized by the congregation. ReconcilingWorks maintains a roster of RIC churches on its website.
(Please note, many Lutheran churches which are welcoming and affirming of LGBTQIA people have not yet gone through the formal RIC process!)
Founded in 1979 as a ministry of Luther Place Memorial Church, and sustained and nurtured by that congregation, Lutheran Volunteer Corps is a Lutheran mission but open to persons of all faith traditions, and affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
LVC places volunteers in full-time service positions at social-justice organizations for one or two years. In its program, LVC places a particular emphasis on racism, oppression, and privilege and how these contribute to ongoing injustice in our society.
LVC is dedicated to becoming an inclusive community as an organization and seeks to dismantle institutional discrimination in all its forms, including racism, sexism, and heterosexism. LVC engages in this journey throughout the whole of its organization – Volunteers, staff, board, placement organizations and alumni.