Resources for Gays, Lesbians, Their Families, and Friends

* Affirmation: 451-2329. Methodist group. On October 1, St. Luke's United Methodist Church voted to welcome all people, "regardless of age, gender, race, family structure, sexual orientation, or economic class." Other Methodist churches, like Trinity UMC, have taken a more definitive role in proclaiming themselves "reconciling churches" for their homosexual parishioners.

* Dignity: 918-1707. Gay Catholic group for support, listening, AIDS care, and outreach. The national organization has named October 8 "Solidarity Sunday," asking all Catholics who disagree with the church's condemnation of homosexuality to wear a rainbow ribbon.

* Integrity: 445-6164. Episcopal. Some members supported Dignity Austin when there were few gay Catholics around.

* Metropolitan Community Church of Austin (MCCA): 416-1170. Gay, inclusive, inter-denominational church. National founder Rev. Troy Perry recently spoke in Austin.

* Mishpachat Am Echad: 451-7018;
873-0422. "A Family of One People." A havurah, or community, for Jewish gays and lesbians. Mainly a social group for both observant and atheist Jews, but observant members do sometimes attend services together.

* Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG): 302-3524. Meets third Tuesday of every month at 7pm at Grace UMC. Support, new friends, and plenty of literature are available. Former Austin president says PFLAG helped her to deal with negative religious beliefs about homo-sexuality, and to support her gay sons.

* St. Francis Ecumenical Catholic Church: 280-9151. New to Austin, one of several small, Catholic movements in the U.S. that do not uphold the Pope's infallibility. All are welcome, all can be ordained. Mass held once a month in the MCCA building. Next mass is October 6 at 7pm. - R.A.

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