Welcoming Faiths of the Merrimack Valley will host an interfaith prayer service on Saturday, March 25th, at 5pm to support our transgender family members and friends. Our faiths teach us to love and respect each other, and to honor the divine light in one another’s eyes.
The service will be led by Rabbi Karen Landy of Havurat Shalom Andover, and Rev. Lee Bluemel of North Parish Unitarian Universalist Church of North Andover, both signatories to the Amicus Brief presented to SCOTUS in support of Gavin Grimm.
The National Weekend of Prayer was designed to be a time to pray for Gavin Grimm (the transgender student at the center of the case), the transgender community, and the Supreme Court justices. All that changed on March 6, 2017, when the Court decided it would no longer hear the case—in response to the executive branch’s decision to remove Title IX guidance clarifying protection for transgender students.
The Court’s decision renders the National Weekend of Prayer for Transgender Justice even more important than before. The executive branch’s decision to remove support for transgender students and the subsequent backtracking of the Supreme Court’s come at a time when a record number of anti-transgender bills are being filed at the state level and hate violence is on the rise against transgender people, particularly transgender women of color and transgender students.
Faith communities do not need a Supreme Court decision to know that transgender people have dignity and worth and that they deserve freedom from violence, fear, and systemic injustices. We knew that when more than 1,800 faith leaders signed an amicus brief in support of Gavin’s case. Faith communities must not delay or discontinue the important task of working for transgender justice. During the Weekend of Prayer on March 24th-March 26th, faith communities across the country will engage in prayer, education, and action for transgender justice. The Weekend of Prayer is also time for faith communities to honor the gifts of transgender people and to make or renew commitments to working for transgender justice.
For more resouces on the Weekend of Prayer, and to add your congregation to the list: https://www.nationalweekendofprayer.org/