top of page

Open and Affirming Overview

 We have begun to explore one of the important goals we identified during our visioning process. On September 13, 2023 The Council of the Federated Church unanimously approved the formation of a task force to study the UCC designation “Open and Affirming”(ONA). The UCC website defines ONA as follows: “Open and Affirming is the UCC designation for congregations, campus ministries, and other bodies in the UCC which make a public covenant of welcome into their full life and ministry to persons of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions.”    The task force of seven (six members and our pastor) has begun to meet with other churches which have recently completed the Open and Affirming process. This is an educational endeavor during which all of us will have many opportunities for discussion, learning, and questions. We hope everyone will participate. You, our church community, will, in the end, decide whether our church will adopt the Open and Affirming designation.      


Here are some preliminary thoughts as we begin this process...          

1) The Open and Affirming process began in UCC churches in 1985.          

2) The Baptist Church has a similar process called Welcome and Affirming.          

3)  During our recent visioning year, the wish to become open and affirming was repeatedly expressed.          

4) The task force will identify many resources that will be used to educate ourselves and our congregation about the meaning and impact of being truly affirming rather than simply welcoming.      


Stay tuned as we learn and grow in this important endeavor.  ​Chairperson Karen Meeks, Jim Butterick, Aubyn Veno, Sophie Winters, Ed Cheal, Elaine Pace, Pastor Mark Winters


(John 13, 34-35) I give you a new commandment that you love one another. Just as I have loved you you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples if you have love for one another.  




more to come!

bottom of page