LGBTQ+ in the Episcopal Diocese of Northern Indiana
The Episcopal Diocese of Northern Indiana is on a journey. Prior to 2016, this web page would not have existed on the diocesan website. But we are on a journey—a journey that is calling us to engage more fully with our LGBTQ+ siblings as we strive for full inclusion in the life of the diocese.
On December 1, 2016, The Right Reverend Dr. Douglas E. Sparks, VIII Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Northern Indiana, issued a pastoral letter, On Marriage and Blessings, authorizing same-gender marriage and blessings within our diocesan borders. This included a process of implementation that was put in place for faith communities to consider. Several faith communities have completed the process outlined in the pastoral letter and have formally adopted an inclusive marriage policy, others are currently engaged in this process, and some have not yet engaged in the discussion. (Below is a list of faith communities that have self-identified as being LGBTQ+ welcoming.)
To our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender brothers, sisters, and siblings: The Episcopal Diocese of Northern Indiana welcomes you!
LGBTQ+ Welcoming Faith Communities in Northern Indiana
(* Faith community has formally adopted an inclusive marriage policy)
LGBTQ+ Resources in the Episcopal Church
In 1976, the General Convention of The Episcopal Church declared that “homosexual persons are children of God who have a full and equal claim with all other persons upon the love, acceptance, and pastoral concern and care of the Church" (1976-A069). Since then, faithful Episcopalians have been working toward a greater understanding and radical inclusion of all of God’s children.
Along the way, The Episcopal Church has garnered a lot of attention, but with the help of organizations such as Integrity USA, the church has continued its work toward full inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Episcopalians. In 2003, the first openly gay bishop was consecrated; in 2009, General Convention resolved that God’s call is open to all; in 2012, a provisional rite of blessing for same-gender relationships was authorized, and discrimination against transgender persons in the ordination process was officially prohibited; and in 2015, the canons of the church were changed to make the rite of marriage available to all people, regardless of gender.
In 2018, General Convention resolved that all Episcopalians can be married in their home churches (2018-B012).
To our lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender brothers, sisters and siblings: “The Episcopal Church welcomes you!”
A nonprofit organization comprised of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender [LGBT] Episcopalians and straight friends. Since its founding by Dr. Louie Crew in rural Georgia in 1974, Integrity has been the leading grassroots voice for the full inclusion of LGBT persons in the Episcopal Church.
TransEpiscopal is a group of transgender and allied Episcopalians dedicated to fostering the full embrace of trans and nonbinary people, and our loved ones within The Episcopal Church and to inspiring faith-based advocacy for trans justice in the wider world. This is an informal group and though many of participants are affiliated with The Episcopal Church the group has no official relationship to The Episcopal Church.