Together as caring and compassionate Christians – while in the midst of praying and preparing for a dialogue on the language in the Book of Discipline on homosexuality – those attending a meeting at Wayne UMC on Thursday, September 22, 2011 agreed to express deep distress and solemn sadness generated by the recent suicide of Jamey Rodemeyer. Jamey, a 14 year old from Buffalo, NY self-identified as gay. He took his life to end the pain inflicted by classmates at his school who bullied him because he was gay. We condemn such bullying, gay bashing and homophobia and call upon all persons and especially the people of the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference of the United Methodist Church to speak out against gay bullying and bashing and to provide outward and visible signs of biblical hospitality to gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning persons. Let’s follow the example of the Philadelphia Phillies and join the “It Get’s Better Project” and sign on to the pledge:
Everyone deserves to be respected for who they are. I pledge to spread this message to my friends, family and neighbors. I’ll speak up against hate and intolerance whenever I see it, at school and at work. I’ll provide hope for lesbian, gay, bi, trans and other bullied teens by letting them know that “It Gets Better.”
Visit the “It Gets Better Project” website at www.itgetsbetter.org to take the pledge.
We agreed that the differences of opinion on homosexuality we represent needed to be preempted with a message of hope when GLBTQ youth are being tormented by anti-gay behavior and targeted for anti-gay actions.
With the Love of Jesus
Joseph DiPaolo, Bunnie Bryant, Kerry Bart, Michael Cothren, Larry Leister, Jim McIntire, Robb Faller and Robin Hynicka