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Home > Resources > Open and Affirming

All are welcome in the United Church of Christ!

The Southwest Conference UCC is an open and affirming (ONA) Conference!
GISS-rainbow-commaONA churches have adopted an "Open and Affirming" covenant welcoming all people, without regard to sexual orientation, into the life and ministry of the congregation. However, many UCC congregations that for various reasons have not adopted an ONA covenant are nevertheless welcoming and safe communities for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Christians.

Of the 47 churches in the Southwest Conference, 22 have made public statements confirming their Open and Affirming (ONA) support of the national position.

At the 2009 Southwest Conference UCC Annual Meeting, church delegates overwhelmingly approved a resolution declaring the Conference to be Open and Affirming. Read more

Reflections of Being a Father
For Father's Day 2014, Davin Franklin-Hicks was asked by the Rev. Delle McCormick, the pastor at Rincon UCC in Tucson, to share his story of fatherhood. He tells his story and the story of his son in this video.
His reflection is exquisite, both from the perspective of his coming into fatherhood with his foster son, and his son coming into manhood as a healthy person when his circumstances would seem to dictate otherwise.

UCC LGBT Ministry News
Welcoming Church/Open and Affirming Trainings
This training has been designed specifically with local churches and their leaders in mind. In offering these trainings, the Health and Wholeness Advocacy Office is a partner with the UCC Coalition for LGBT Concerns, along with the welcoming church programs of several other denominations.

Each training will explore topics which will help you become a more effective leader on issues related to human sexuality and gender identity for the purpose of helping a local church discern God's call to live the values of ONA.

Participation in the trainings is ecumenical and there is time in each training session devoted to denominationally specific information, especially related to learning about resources, planning and other things particular to the denomination of the participant.
It Gets Better Project
It Gets BetterWhile many of these teens couldn’t see a positive future for themselves, we can. The It Gets Better Project was created to show young LGBT people the levels of happiness, potential, and positivity their lives will reach – if they can just get through their teen years.

The It Gets Better Project wants to remind teenagers in the LGBT community that they are not alone — and it WILL get better.

It Gets Better website
ONA Links
Conference ONA churches
List of SWC churches that have delared to be open and affirming

SWC Church ONA Statements
Read each church's statement

Conference ONA Resolution
Read the 2009 SWC Resolution

UCC LBGT Ministries
National setting LGBT Web site

FAQ about ONA
What does ONA mean and additional information

Called out eNews
Subscribe to the electronic newsletter on LGBT concerns

UCC Coalition for LGBT Concerns
Advocated for LGBT persons, their families and friends