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Celebrating the Present

Remarks at the 20th Anniversary Dinner of Integrity/Washington

October 27, 1995

by John Clinton Bradley
Co-Convener

Tonight we celebrate the 20th birthday of our chapter.  Thanks to the vision and commitment of past leaders and members, Integrity/Washington has survived the vulnerability of childhood and the awkwardness of the adolescence.  We owe those who have gone before us a great debt.  I would like to ask all of the former officers of the chapter to stand and be acknowledged.

By the grace of God, Integrity/Washington has grown up.  We are now a mature organization fully involved in our world.  We have become an important contributor to the greater gay and lesbian community and the wider church.   

I would like to give you a brief overview of the state of our chapter today.  This may sound as if I am bragging.  Well, I am.  We have much to proud about and this is the time to reflect upon such things

I believe we currently have about 90 members.  If you have become a member in the past year, please stand.  If you have become a member in the past five years, please stand.  10 years?  15 years?  20 years?

We have a great Board of Directors.  Everyone is hardworking and is dependable.  We are able to disagree in a healthy and constructive manner.

Three of our board members are women; the other four are men.  This allows for the perspectives of both genders to be given equal consideration.

I would like to acknowledge these folks tonight.  Please stand as I call your name:

Carolyn--Female Co-Convener
Randy--Director of Communications
Tonda--Director of Finances
Jonathon--Director of Liturgy & Programs
Margaret--Director of Church & Community Affairs
Rich--Director of Social Affairs

We encourage all members to join one of our five workgroups.  The workgroups are:

Communications
Finances
Liturgy & Programs
Church & Community Affairs
Social Affairs

This gives every member the opportunity to directly participate in the ministry of our organization.  Everyone who is on a workgroup, please stand.  If you have not yet joined, please talk to the director of the one you wish to join.

We are financially sound.  I believe our bank balance is somewhere around $3500.  However, our financial base is not wide.   A small number of members provide the majority of our income.  We pay our bills, but we do not have the monetary resources we need to expand our work.  That's why we have to have so many special fund-raising campaigns.  I invite all members to prayerfully consider increasing their amount of giving and give on a semi-monthly or monthly basis.

We have a wonderful newsletter, Walking With Integrity, that is published three times a year.  I ask our editor, Randy, to stand and be acknowledged.

We publish a semi-monthly add in the Washington Blade.  We also publish an ad in Women's Monthly.  These ads are a significant source of visitors.  How many of you found out about integrity from one of these sources?

Randy and Jon maintain our voice mailbox so that interest persons can find out more about our chapter. 

We maintain a post office box, which is now visited regularly by Leslie.  Jon and Randy sort the mail.

We have a site on the World Wide Web thanks to Scotty Ward, the keeper of the unofficial Web site of the Diocese of Washington.

As mentioned by Warren Carson, we started and maintain Integrity Lightspeed, an Internet mailing list connecting Integrity members and chapters across North America.  We are the most wired of all the local chapters.  About 30 of us participate in Lightspeed

We meet on the second and fourth Fridays.  We have wonderful liturgy  (Thanks to Michael).   We have great music (thanks to Bob).

Our average attendance is around 40.

We have a wide variety of local clergy join with us to preside.  (Please stand if you are a clergy person who has presided with Integrity/Washington in the past.)  Most of them are gay and lesbian, but not all.  We make a concerted effort to invite the rectors of our Welcoming Parishes to be with us. 

We have 21 Welcoming Parishes in the diocese who have declared that they welcome gay and lesbian people to full and equal inclusion.  I would like to publicly thank Corinne and Carolyn for the vision in initiating this project. 

We are present at diocesan convention every year.  Submitting resolutions and having an exhibit booth.  Our successful presentation of the Koinonia Resolution has really challenged our diocese to accept gay and lesbian people to full fellowship in the church and equal access to its rites.

We participate in Pride Day every year--sponsoring a unit in the parade and hosting an exhibit booth.

We participate in Whitman Walker's AIDSwalk every year.

We are very active in our diocesan AIDS ministry Episcopal Caring Response to AIDS (ECRA).   Two of our members are our liaisons. (Thanks to Rob and Parker.)

Good things are happening.  But the best is yet to come.

It has been a great privilege to serve as your co-convener during the past three years. 

"Affirm Koinonia" Press Release

I wrote this press release for Integrity/Washington.



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 28, 1995

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:

John C. Bradley
REDACTED (work)
REDACTED (home)
REDACTED (e-mail)

WASHINGTON, DC--The Episcopal Diocese of Washington, D.C., clearly affirmed its support today for gay and lesbian people.  During its annual convention, lay and clerical delegates from approximately 100 congregations voted in favor of two gay-positive resolutions.
One of the resolutions expressed support for Maryland legislation making it illegal to discriminate against lesbians and gays in housing and employment.  The other resolution affirmed that the church should support same-sex unions and that qualified gays and lesbians should be ordained to the priesthood.

For several years, a bill has been introduced in the Maryland Assembly to add sexual orientation to the list of classes protected from housing and employment discrimination.  The bill has not yet succeeded, partially due to the opposition of the radical religious right.

"The unanimous passage of the Maryland civil rights resolution shows legislators that most people of faith support nondiscrimination on the basis of sexual orientation," said John Bradley, co-convener of Integrity/Washington, the group of gay and lesbian Episcopalians that initiated the resolution.  "This resolution sends a strong message of social justice from our diocese to Maryland lawmakers."  The Diocese of Washington includes several counties in southern Maryland.

In the summer of 1994, at the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, the Right Rev. John S. Spong of Newark presented a document called the Koinonia Statement to his sister and brother bishops.  (Koinonia is a Greek word that means "community" or "fellowship.")  The Koinonia Statement declares that sexual orientation is "morally neutral" and that both heterosexuality and homosexuality can be lived out "with beauty, honor, holiness, and integrity."  The statement also says that "faithful, monogamous, committed, lifegiving, and holy relationships" between gay and lesbian couples should be recognized and supported by the church.  It affirms the ordination of gay and lesbian people who meet all other qualifications for the priesthood.  The statement, however, does not grant permission for either of these activities or mandate that they be performed.  To date, 70 bishops have signed the Koinonia Statement.

During his speech to the diocesan convention in favor of the resolution, the Rev. Michael W. Hopkins--an openly gay priest serving a congregation in the diocese and one of the original cosponsors of the Koinonia resolution--said, "As a gay man, I have long waited for the Church to come to my house and see.  I have nothing to hide.  Any of you who are skeptical, you are welcome at either table where my life is centered--either the Table at which I am privileged to preside at St. George's Chapel or the table I share with my partner in our home.  Any time, come and see.  I stand before you to put a human face on this issue...I am one of you."

After the Koinonia resolution passed, Father Hopkins said, "Passing this resolution acknowledged a reality that already exists in our diocese.  There are many gay and lesbian people in our diocese.  These clergy and laity guide our parishes, play our organs, lead our choirs, teach our Sunday Schools, and pay our pledges.  By passing this resolution, our diocese has said to these gay and lesbian Episcopalians, 'We are glad to have you gathering together around the altar with us as fellow children of God.'"

Before the vote, 62 delegates asked to be listed as cosponsors of the Koinonia resolution.  During debate on the resolution, several delegates told moving stories about the struggle of their gay and lesbian relatives to find acceptance in the church.  When the vote was taken, over two-thirds of convention delegates voted in favor of the Koinonia resolution.


Instructor Resource Manual, Prehospital Emergency Care, Fifth Edition

On behalf of Brady, I wrote the instructor resource manual that accompanied this textbook.