Church calls to welcome and support trans people
The Minister of Pitt Street Uniting Church, Rev. Dr Josephine Inkpin, has called for increased measures to support health and education for trans and other gender diverse people. Rev. Dr Inkpin was speaking at a community rally at Sydney Town Hall on 5 June, called to oppose two Bills in the NSW parliament.
“The Bills put forward by One Nation, on ‘religious discrimination’ and ‘parental choice in education’, would exclude people, and remove essential support for younger trans and other gender diverse people,” said Rev. Dr Inkpin.
“It is time that leading politicians and religious leaders stopped abusing religion to hurt people and cling to power.”
Prior to the community rally, Rev. Dr Inkpin had led an Ecumenical Prayer Service with the theme ‘Love not exclusion’ at Pitt Street Uniting Church.
Rev. Dr Inkpin said “There is no necessary conflict between being part of the LGBTQ+ community and being a person of faith. The attempts to drive a wedge between people undermines our nation’s shared commitments to human rights and a ‘fair go’ for all. Jesus was quite clear – ‘love your neighbour as yourself’ is at the heart of divine law and compassion.”
As chair of Equal Voices, a national LGBTQ+ Christian network, Rev. Dr Josephine Inkpin celebrates the increasing emergence of sexually and gender diverse people of faith, and the growth of affirming churches and other religious groups. “The transformation of life-denying religion may be one of the last and hardest frontiers of LGBTQ+ liberation, but it is ultimately irresistible, for it is a gift of the Holy Spirit.”
Rev. Dr Inkpin drew particular attention to the threats to transgender people, in the Education Bill proposed by NSW One Nation. “We so badly need attention to transgender needs,” she said.
“Yet this moves entirely in the wrong direction. May we together as a society therefore use it as a rallying call to change direction, turn the cross the right way up, and fully affirm the gifts of all.”