Exterior of church with rainbow flag.
Photo by Sally Armstrong – As a highly visible sign of welcome to the LGBTQ community, a rainbow flag hangs in front of the Unitarian Church of Montpelier on a beautiful summer day.

The Unitarian Church of Montpelier (UCM) is a “Welcoming Congregation,” which indicates that our church community aims to be fully inclusive of individuals who are LGBTQIA+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, asexual, etc.) This is a designation that was awarded by the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) after a multi-year process, culminating in an application submitted in 2013. It is now time to re-certify in order to maintain our designation!

Over the past eight years, the Welcoming Congregation Committee, working with church staff, members, and friends, has done many things, including:

  • organized Sunday Worship Services, addressing LGBTQIA+ issues, every other year
  • set up a table, book collection, and bulletin board, with committee member(s) present to welcome questions during in-person Sunday Coffee Hours
  • created and maintained a lending library of books with LGBTQIA+ themes for adults and children 
  • co-sponsored showings of films and discussions of books (collaboration with Montpelier’s Kellogg-Hubbard Library)
  • offered workshops with trained facilitators
  • promoted and arranged space and facilitators for “Friday Night Group” for teens (collaboration with Outright Vermont)
  • recruited participants for Pride marches in Burlington
  • hosted a gathering of UUs from Northern New England churches which also have the Welcoming Congregation designation
  • advocated for gender-neutral restrooms & restroom signage throughout the UCM building

Please feel free to comment about these efforts, and suggest additional ways we can be even more inclusive and welcoming to members of the LGBTQ+ community, by contacting current committee members: Anne Ferguson; Phil Morse; Ellie Peters; Nancy Schulz; Lindsay Wade; Ruth Witte.

Thank you!