Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Reflections on pride ...

OK ... so being something of a 'late developer', Saturday's Brighton Pride was my first Pride Parade, even though I've been in the UK now for 5 years. I've normally been working for every other Pride Parade (in every other city in the UK).

I knew it'd be fun, which it was, but it had such a warm community feel to it, as well. It felt like an entire town, and it's residents and businesses and institutions, gathering to celebrate the diversity of life. People came out with their kids, their babies in push-chairs, their parents and grandparents.

In the parade, there were commercial floats, community floats, religious community floats (from the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement, the Quakers and the Salvation Army), floats by the forces and the emergency services ... and it was a wonderful celebration of the diversity of life and of acknowledging each other's differences, yes, but it was more than that ... it was celebrating similarities ... we're all in this together. It was great.

Although few, it was particularly great to witness some religious input into the parade. Well done to the Salvation Army, Metropolitan Community Church, the Quakers and the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement. I'm glad that at least some people have realised that the Gospel is 'Good News'. There are way too many organisations and movements that are focused on belittling people, undermining their humanity and mocking the wonder and diversity of God's creation, by trying to force people to comply to their limited understanding of religion, and not enough people attempting to include people in the spreading of 'Good News'! We are, after all, called to share the Love of Jesus Christ with the world, not to exclude and judge.

So, hats off to all those from religious communities that marched in Brighton on Saturday, and to those that march in other parades world-wide. I really should look at joining them.
I'll include a selection of photographs.

Taraaa, and stay fabulous!

Look at all the people in Preston Park!

And some very theological accessories

How long did he collect feathers for?

I love the fruity hat!

The fire brigade ... fabulous!

It says, "We feel that the quality and depth of feeling between two people is the most important part of a loving relationship, not their gender or sexual orientation. " Hooray for the Quakers! ;)

The Metropolitan Community Church float

The Lesbian and Gay Christians and their friends. Praying for an inclusive Church, indeed!

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