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Volume VIII Issue 10                          

22 May 2013




I just returned from 5 days of vacation in the hills of south-central Tennessee. Every year a group of seminary friends gathers for relaxation, respite, and renewal. We share the changes in our lives and ministries, pray for each other, and feast around an enormous table. And then, we depart and go back to our daily lives.

That sounds a lot like our lives as disciples, right? We gather, we pray, we feast, and we are sent forth to live our lives the other six days of the week. Those other six days are important - because that's where we learn about the deep needs of the world - and then we take action.

The past few days have presented numerous opportunities for action - and I hope you'll join me in whatever way possible.

*Boy Scouts of America is preparing to vote regarding inclusion of gay Scouts and LGBT leaders.

TAKE ACTION: Call your local Boy Scout Council. Let them know you are United Methodist and support full inclusion!

*Oklahoma needs our help! In times of natural disasters, poverty continues to grow. Jeremy Smith at HackingChristianity outlines the importance of the work that needs to be done.

TAKE ACTION: Donate to UMCOR and start preparing VIM teams to help on the ground once teams are needed.

*Bishop Minerva G. Carcaņo highlighted why LGBT families should be included in the current legislative discussions on immigration. Although LGBT protections didn't make it through the US Senate's "Gang of 8," please take the time to email a thank you to Bishop Carcaņo for speaking out. And don't forget to tell her you're an MFSA supporter!

My Spirit is renewed and ready for action! How about yours?

Grace and peace,

Chett Pritchett
Interim Executive Director 

The Upper New York Chapter of MFSA invites others to participate in the NoRobes Project this Annual Conference season. Below is part of the statement sent to all clergy in their Conference:

"During the service of ordination you are invited to join The NoRobes Project,
affirming full inclusion in our church's clergy leadership. All clergy are invited to process without a clergy robe, showing support for those who, because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, are still denied participation among our clergy.

Instead of wearing a robe, you may wish to wear only a stole or a rainbow stole in support of this witness. (Those who want to support The NoRobes Project but choose o wear a robe can still do so by wearing a rainbow stole.)

We are fully aware that some neither support this witness nor desire any changes in The Discipline which would de-stigmatize gay folk. Our intention is not to lobby you but imply to invite you to join this silent, non-disruptive witness to the suffering of untold numbers of people who feel called to ordained ministry by God, but nevertheless are still denied affirmation of that calling in the United Methodist Church."

Is there a NoRobes Project in your Annual Conference? Now might be the time to start one! Or maybe your Annual Conference has another creative way of witnessing to God's love and call upon persons of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Let us know and we'll share photos during Annual Conference season.


Friday, May 17th marked the 100th day of a hunger strike by detainees at the the Guantanamo Bay detention center. MFSA staff member, JD Gore, joined members of religious, public policy, and human rights groups for a noontime vigil at the White House to draw attention to a variety of torture methods used on detainees. A petition with over 370,000 calling for the closure of the facility names was delivered to President Obama.  

During the rally, the National Religious Campaign Against Torture's executive director, Rev. Richard Killmer, lifted up the concern for the lives of the hunger strikers, and described the organization's longstanding concern for the moral wound that Guantanamo has created.



"Years of detention without charge or trial have created a sense of desperation and hopelessness among the men at Guantanamo, which has led over 100 of them to join a hunger strike," Killmer said during his remarks at the rally. "The human crisis in Guantanamo is a moral one that needs to end immediately. The faith community calls on the President to close Guantanamo. It is the right thing to do."


MFSA is an Endorsing Member of the National Religious Campaign Against Torture.  

TAKE ACTION: You can still tell President Obama to stop torture and close Guantanamo.
Nuns on the Bus!

They're back! The Nuns on the Bus tour was one of the most celebrated religious news stories of 2012 - and they're back again to raise awareness about the need for comprehensive immigration reform that reflects values, not fears!

Watch Sister Simone Campbell talk about the importance of Nuns on the Bus, then check out their tour schedule for Summer 2013.

Sister Simone Campbell on Why 'Nuns on the Bus' Continues
Sister Simone Campbell on Why 'Nuns on the Bus' Continues
ProgressivePonderingsProgressive Ponderings
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Make it relevant!

If you're the Facebook page manager for your organization or control the Twitter account, this one's directed right at you!

We all love pictures of kitty cats and cute babies. But if it's not relevant to the mission of your organization, don't post it with the organization's account.

Too many of these:

Could land you with a few of these:

Methodist Federation for Social Action
212 East Capitol Street, NE
Washington, DC 20003