By Rev. Jay Moses
I just got home from volunteering at the Interfaith Council of Metropolitan Washington’s table at the Pride festival today in DC. The Metro was surprisingly unproblematic and the weather was on “medium high” but I was grateful as I walked through the gates of Pennsylvania Ave and 7th Street to encounter various folks gathered around support of the LGBTQ+ community and seeking to identify with the foundations of its meaning.
A few thoughts:
One man asked if we represented the Jedi religion
Many told their stories of being ostracized by religion
Many were grateful we were there and were “friendly”
People are VERY VERY into finding free merch
When one partner showed interest in talking to me the other usually stood cautiously a few feet back
We have come a long way from the mid 1980’s
People who I might not have noticed separately were one obvious “people” now gathered
For Christians: How much do we really love people?
For the interfaith community: What are we doing to engage this people-hood which crosses all our religious boundaries?
It was a long day, “amongst the crowds” with all of their unique backgrounds and specific and personal approaches to their lives and to the sacred. I couldn’t have felt closer to the Jesus I image walking amongst the crowds. I could not deny a presence between me and total strangers that connected us to each other. To me I would articulate it as Christ, but I recognize that Christ is free, wild and known by different names amongst a people longing to be loved, understood and listened to. I have much to learn. Thank God there is much more to learn.
Rev. Jay Moses is a member of IFC’s Board of Directors and the pastor at St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC.