Press Release: Rainbow Celebration in St. Saviour’s Anglican Church
European Forum of LGBT Christians to Host Special Service for All During EuroPride
St. Saviour’s, the Anglican Church of Riga, has opened her doors to the European Forum of Christian LGBT Groups to host a Rainbow Celebration (June 21), for the occasion of EuroPride.
God Loves Everyone
The Rainbow Service, which is organized for the occasion of EuroPride (June 15–21, 2015), wants to be a safe space for all, especially LGBT Christians. The European Forum of Christian LGBT Groups appeals to all churches in Latvia to denounce any form of discrimination of LGBT people in church and to openly support a society, in which everyone can participate equally and freely. Wielie Elhorst, Co-President (male) of the European Forum: “We are grateful we have found a safe space in St. Saviour’s. We hope all churches will follow this example and will welcome all people, whatever their sexual orientation or gender identity. We believe God loves everyone.”
Be the Change!
The theme of the Rainbow Celebration is “Be the change!”, following the theme of EuroPride. The service wants to inspire LGBT people In Latvia and throughout Europe to be agents of change in their own situation and context. The organizers of the service are grateful and happy to have Christian LGBTs from Latvia present. Maris Sants, a former Lutheran minister in Latvia now serving as a minister for the West London Mission (UK): “Ten years ago, in 2005, we organized, a ‘rainbow service’ as well, at great cost for me personally. I am very happy to join the Rainbow Celebration now to show that LGBT people in Latvia are still striving for a good cause. I had to flee my country. I hope this can be different for LGBTs today and in the future.”
The Rainbow Celebration will be held on Sunday June 21, 9.30 am in St. Saviour’s Church, Anglikanu iela 2 in Riga. The service, which includes Holy Communion, will be led by Revd. Jonathan Brown (UK, Anglican) and Revd. Wielie Elhorst (Netherlands, Reformed). Many others will participate. All are welcome! The Rainbow Celebration is organized under the auspices of the European Forum of Christian LGBT Groups (founded 1982), an organization that combines the work of over 40 groups in more than 20 European countries (website: http://www.euroforumlgbtchristians.eu).
LGBT stands for “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender”.