Since 2018, the Presbyterian Church in Ireland has routinely barred same sex couples from communicant membership of their churches as a matter of policy. PCI’s callous rationale is that such persons allegedly “cannot make a credible profession of faith”, and therefore the church also refuses to baptise their children.
In response, we’re here again at #pciga23 to offer an open communion table on the spot where the door has been firmly shut in the face of others.
To effectively bar an entire section of society from the Lord’s Table is about as unchristian as it gets. To be Christian means following the way of Jesus, and Jesus made the headlines not for excluding people from the table, but for welcoming them to it.
If you are a person of faith who wants to see the wider church behave more like Jesus in response to this issue, there are 2 things you can do.
1) Use your voice. “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” (Martin Luther King Jr). It is up to the whole Christian community, not just PCI, to challenge discriminatory practices against LGBTQIA+ persons within the church.
2) Create and hold space for the reclamation of authentic Christianity in our time. This means a spirituality that lives compassionately, cherishes all of creation, is thoughtful in faith, embraces mystery, excludes no-one and cultivates an altogether more defiantly hopeful view of our future together.
It’s not up to any of us to judge whose faith is “credible” and whose is not, let alone who is worthy to approach the table of grace and who is not. We are ALL unworthy – that is the entire point.
As the sign says: “This table is our only credible profession of faith. Let’s break bread together”. #lovewins
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