Edmonton congregation seeks to be openly inclusive

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Donita Wiebe-Neufeld,

At the pastors council meeting, First Mennonite Church called for prayer as a letter that will be sent to all Mennonite Church Alberta congregations was shared. The letter presents a motion passed on Feb. 8: “As a congregation, we ... would like to move toward becoming a publicly open and welcoming faith community for all people, regardless of race, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, abilities, socio-economic status, family composition, and for any other minority or marginalized individuals or groups. In 2015, we commit ourselves to working alongside those in our fellowship who have concerns. We commit ourselves to working alongside the local, area and national church bodies of which [First Mennonite] is part. At our annual congregational meeting in 2016, we will vote on the tabled motion [for acceptance and inclusion].” Asked for his thoughts after the assembly, Dan Graber, area church minister, responded, “The Alberta [area church] seems to be in a healthy place at this time, despite different views on various issues and coming from different backgrounds and theological traditions. Leaders and members seem to be doing their best to not let our fears lead us.”

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