Rainbow banner with UUA chalice logo LGBTQ Welcoming Congregation

The Welcoming Congregation Program is a volunteer program for Unitarian Universalist congregations that want to take intentional steps to become more welcoming and inclusive of people with marginalized sexual orientations and gender identities.

 Today, 63% of U.S. Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations are recognized as Welcoming Congregations. Read more about the History of the UUA’s Welcoming Congregation Program here.

On April 26, 2011 the Executive Team (ET) of the Unitarian Church of Montpelier (UCM) created the Welcoming Congregation Task Force. The Task Force was charged to take the necessary steps recommended by the UUA to achieve the official “Welcoming Congregation” designation. This designation was awarded to UCM in July, 2013. At that time, the Task Force was dissolved and a Welcoming Congregation Committee (WCC) was formed to continue to guide UCM into becoming ever more welcoming and inclusive.

Current members of our WCC in 2021 include: Elaine Ball (she/her); Phil Morse (he/him); Ellie Peters (she/her); Verdis L. Robinson (he/him); Lindsay Wade (she/her); and Ruth Witte (she/her), Acting Chair. Please contact Ruth Witte for details, including upcoming meeting dates & times!


For Additional Reading & Learning: 

We ARE a Welcoming Congregation 

“Audre Lorde Broke the Silence” (The New Republic) — by Emily Bernard — 2021

“Bayard Rustin: An Architect Of The Civil Rights Movement You May Have Never Heard Of” (NPR) — heard on All Things Considered — 2021

“The Pride Flag Has a Representation Problem” (The Atlantic) — by Alex V. Green — 2021

“It’s Time Black and Brown People Be Included in the Pride Flag” (them.) — by Nico Lang — 2020

“Laverne Cox says ‘it’s not safe if you’re a trans person’ after attack” (BBC News) — 2020

“A Place for Us” (sermon) — by Aaron Marcus (they/them) — 2019

“Drag Herstory: A Drag King’s Journey From Cabaret Legend to Iconic Activist” (them.) — by Elyssa Goodman — 2018

“This Pride Flag Redesign Represents the Diversity of the  LGBTQ+ Community” (them.) — by Eva Reign — 2018

“Finding Your Way” (sermon) — by Nancy Schulz (she/her) — 2017

“Philly’s Pride Flag to Get Two New Stripes: Black and Brown” (Philadelphia Magazine) — by Ernest Owens — 2017

“Rainbow flag creator Gilbert Baker dies at 65” (CNN) — by Nicole Chavez — 2017

“Behind the Scenes with Kumu Hina” (lei) — by Kelli Gratz and Kai Markell — 2015

“Brave Love: Are We Gaining Ground?” (sermon) — by Nancy Schulz (she/her) — 2015

Standing on the Side of Love at UCM — 2015

Wishes on the Rainbow Flag at UCM — 2015

“Love’s Collaborators” (sermon) — by Rev. Joan Javier-Duval (she/her) — 2015

“The Gay Experience Today: Celebrations and Challenges” (sermon) — by Nancy Schulz (she/her) — 2014

Rainbow Children at UCM (photo) — 2014

“Storme DeLarverie, Early Leader in the Gay Rights Movement, Dies at 93” (New York Times) — by William Yardley — 2014

UCM’s Welcoming Congregation Application — 2013

We Welcome All at UCM (photo) — 2013

Stonewall Veteran’s Wisdom on ‘Ugliness’ (video, 4 min, 15 sec) — interview by Kirk Klocke with Storme DeLarverie — 2009

“Stonewall, Gay Bar That Made History, Is Made a Landmark” (New York Times) — by David W. Dunlap — 1999

“I Have to Go Off: activist Sylvia Rivera on choosing to riot at Stonewall” (The Guardian) — interview by Eric Marcus with Sylvia Rivera — 1989

“Freedom Day, 1963: A Lost Interview With James Baldwin” (The New Yorker) — interview by Fern Marja Eckman with James Baldwin (and
David Baldwin