Tent Witness hits N.C.

GARNER, N.C. — Former United Methodist Church (UMC) minister Jimmy Creech will join UM Pastor Mike Tupper’s Tent Witness first church trial commemoration on March 11, 11:30 a.m., at the North Carolina United Methodist Conference offices, 700 Waterfield Ridge Pl., where a press conference will take place.

The date was selected to coincide with Raleigh, N.C. native Creech’s first day of his trial in 1998 as a UMC pastor for officiating at a same-sex wedding service. A year later a second trial was held that removed his ministerial credentials forever. Creech was the first UM pastor charged and tried by the church, and is the only pastor whose credentials of ordination were withdrawn by the church for conducting a same-sex wedding.

Tupper pitched a tent in the snow on Nov. 30, 2015, in Michigan and is sleeping outside until the General Conference meets in May where Reconciling United Methodists will call on the denomination to embrace LGBT inclusion. The goal of the Tent Witness is to raise awareness of the discrimination that is still in place in The United Methodist Church against LGBT individuals and pastors who want to be fully in ministry with them, Creech shared.

“I am doing this for my daughter Sarah,” said Rev. Tupper who officiated at her same-sex wedding 18 months ago. This past July he officiated at the same-sex wedding of the Rev. Benjamin and Monty Hutchison. Complaints were filed against Tupper after both weddings. The second case is still pending and could end up at a church trial.

info: umc.org.

Film screening announced

RALEIGH, N.C. — “Gen Silent” will be shown on March 18, 7 p.m., at the LGBT Center of Raleigh, 324 S. Harrington St.

The screening is an Allies Group event. The documentary follows the lives of six LGBT seniors living in the Boston area who must decide if they will hide their sexuality in order to survive in the long-term health care system. The title of the film is a reference to the generations of older LGBT people who remain in the closet or re-enter the closet out of concern for their safety or quality of life.

A discussion follows.

info: lgbtcenterofraleigh.com.

Youth org revitalized

DURHAM, N.C. — Upsidedown, the youth group for those under 12-years-old who are gender-non-conforming, transgender or gender variant, has rebooted its efforts.

Meetings are slated every other Sunday from 2-4 p.m., at an undisclosed location. Upcoming dates are: March 20, April 3 and 17, May 1, 15 and 29. Email insideoutamy@gmail.com to learn more.

Director Amy Glaser said, “At Upsidedown, we create space that is respectful of everyone, where youth … can connect, have fun and change the world.” They decide what projects and activities to do together. In the past they have had ice cream parties, gone to Frankie’s Fun Park, made yard signs protesting Amendment One, created an educational video about starting Gay-Straight Alliances, and more.

Glaser added that ehe group falls under the umbrella of iNSIDEoUT180, a self-led, youth-founded organization by and for LGBTQIS+ teens.

info: insideout180.org.

Org hosts ride

CARRBORO, N.C. — Planned Parenthood South Atlantic will hold its Third Annual Ride for Choice benefit on April 17, 1 p.m., beginning at Par Cycles, 403 W. Weaver St.

Cyclists will take to the road, taking in a scenic ride around Orange and Alamance Counties. Two ride lengths are available, either 24 or 54 miles, each with rest stops and emergency support along the route.

After the ride, participants can enjoy a beer and bratwurst and other treats at the Open Eye Cafe, 101 S. Greensboro St.

Tickets are limited, so expedient online reservation bookings are encouraged. The first 100 to register will receive a pair of Ride for Choice socks. Tickets range from $35-$500, depending upon length of run and options that include the party. Email mitchell.price@ppsat.org to learn more.

info/reservations: bit.ly/1R2hjxA

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Share your news with us
Does your organization or special interest group have events or great information to share with our readers? If so, be sure to send in your information to specialassignments@goqnotes-launch2.newspackstaging.com. In the upcoming months, we’ll feature one of you in our news notes section in each issue. Are you a part of a Meetup, Yahoo or Google group and do you do something that’s really newsworthy? Do you provide a service for the community or hold fundraisers for worthy causes? Do you educate the public about LGBT issues or concerns? Of course, this is only a sampling of things we are interested in. It’s the aim of these pieces to inform, enlighten and educate our readers about what we’re doing here in the Carolinas to champion LGBT rights, as well as offer resources for those who may be interested in what your group is doing.

Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen was formerly QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director from 2001-2019 when she retired.