After the recent Blue Ridge Pride festival, readers should be aware of an historical event which occurred on the evening of Sunday, Oct. 4. That event was a moving, family-friendly, interfaith worship service at First Congregational Church in Hendersonville.
It was the first worship service that specifically invited gays and straights, of all abilities, throughout the area to worship openly together. One of the preachers who is gay said with tears in her eyes that she thought she would never live to see the day when straights and gays in Western North Carolina would joyfully worship God together, which certainly happened that night. The Spirit-filled sanctuary was the inclusive setting for devout prayer, inspired preaching and magnificent music. As I sat there with adults and children who society too often disdains, it reminded me of Jesus sitting and eating with those of his culture who were marginalized.
This historical "first" mustn't be a "last," but a "normal" nonevent.
— Pat Argue