COLUMBIA—Washington Street United Methodist Church will be holding a Service of Repentance and Healing For the Harm Inflicted on LGBTQIA+ persons this month.
The service will be Thursday, Oct. 13, at 6 p.m. in WSUMC’s sanctuary. The service will coincide with Pride Festival weekend, which will be taking place in downtown Columbia on Oct. 14-15. Individuals from Reformation Lutheran Church will be participating in the service with testimonials on the topic.
The service will include elements of confession and repentance and the repudiation of the times when churches have been silent in the face of the harm caused by the church to LBGTQIA+ persons.
Recently, as a response to issues of safety and welcome raised by members of the LGBTQAI+ community through dialogues at WSUMC, the church created a new location for a Sunday morning fellowship: the SAFE Space. Open from 9:45 to 10:45 a.m. and hosted by LGBTQAI+ members of WSUMC and other allies, the SAFE Space is located just inside of the Bull Street entrance of the church.
There is access to view the 11 a.m. service from the room if anyone is interested.
Washington Street was established in 1803 and was the first Christian house of worship in Columbia. In January 2016, WSUMC updated its identity statement to reflect the vision of the church and its congregation: “The congregation of WSUMC praises and serves God from the heart of the city in ways which reach our neighbors near and far. We welcome all who seek the love and mercy of Christ regardless of race, creed, age, gender, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, or economic status. We honor traditions as rooted in our history, our expression of worship, and our respect for theological curiosity. We nonetheless see vital change and ongoing renewal as essential for spiritual growth.”