Monday, April 19, 2010

Soup and Wine Tasting
Come and join us!
Saturday, May 22, 2010
4:30 to 7:30 pm
at the Cascade Winery
4665 Broadmoor Avenue SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49512
Treat your senses to wines made locally by the fantastic vintners at Cascade Winery, while you indulge in tasting sumptuous homemade soups created by competing supporters
Tickets are $5 if purchased in advance, and $7 at the door.  The tickets entitle you to six wine tastings and one tasting for each soup.  Soup winners will be chosen by donations.  The soup with the most donations in the box, WINS! 

The money will be used for programming to widen our outreach to lgbt people of faith  and to supportive churches wanting to pastor to all.

To purchase tickets in advance, send your check to GIFT at 207 E. Fulton Street, Grand Rapids, MI 49503, or order on-line (two tickets minimum on-line) at
All tickets will be held at the door.

About GIFT
We are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning people (from teens to retirement) with family members, friends, and other supportive folks.
Faith is important to us.  GIFT is people who have joined together to form an ecumenical Christian organization with headquarters in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  We include people from a wide variety of faith backgrounds, and we welcome everyone to join us in our mission, which is to work toward affirming lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons in West Michigan’s faith communities.  We want to be a beacon of light which reveals God's love for all people regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.  We believe truly unconditional love includes all people.
We invite you to learn more about us!
207 East Fulton StreetGrand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 774-0446

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Powerful, thought-provoking speaker coming to Plymouth Church

Friends, I heard Dr. Julie speak at Synod last year and this is not one to miss. Her story is powerful and poignant and is a very important part of the "t" in lgbt.


Putting the "T" in LGBT

Sunday, April 18, 2010
10:00am - 1:00pm
Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ
4010 Kalamazoo St. SE
Grand Rapids, MI


10 a.m. Sermon followed by soup and salad lunch
12 noon Presentation and Q&A
Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ
4010 Kalamazoo Ave. SE

You don’t have to attend the worship service in order to participate in the presentation. Lunch is free to attendees of worship and/or the workshop. Childcare will be provided.

About Plymouth Cong, UCC:

Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ, Grand Rapids, Michigan, is a local congregation of the United Church of Christ, a mainline, Protestant denomination of 1.5 million members, with a tradition of progressive involvement in issues which uphold the rights, dignity, and equality of all people under God.

At Plymouth, we seek to celebrate God's inclusive grace and unconditional love in affirming the diversity of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, and economic status. All have need of God's grace, all have gifts to share for the just and peaceable reign God intends.

Our members have fought in war and fought against war. We have struggled with the question of sexual orientation and identity and have determined that God’s love is big enough to encompass all. We are a mix of ages and ethnicities, social and economic backgrounds. But, in our support and affirmation of each other, we are one family.

About Julie Nemecek:

The Rev. Dr. Julie Nemecek is a former university professor who lost her job for following the treatment protocols for her diagnosed condition. The Christian university where she worked said that following these protocols to reach some measure of congruence between mind and body was “un-Christian behavior”. She is a transsexual. During this process, Dr. Nemecek shared her story with the local newspaper. The story was quickly picked up by the Associated Press and ultimately appeared in various media including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, U.S. News and World Report, Fox News, Newsweek, Christianity Today and numerous other local, regional, national, and international publications or broadcasts. From February 5th through March 15th 2007, Dr. Nemecek averaged 2-3 media interviews a weekday and over 100 interviews before the year was over.

Dr. Nemecek and Joanne, her life partner of 37 years, have been willing to share their story with all who wish to hear it. In the process they have both become outspoken activists for LGBT rights. They recently spoke from the steps of the Michigan Capital to a crowd that was estimated by local police to be nearly 3000. They have shared their story on university and college campuses, churches, and even the occasional high school campus. It is a story of injustice, pain, suffering, hope, and love.

Before moving into higher education in 1990, Rev. Nemecek served for 20 years in pastoral ministry including an inner-city Chicago church. She is an ordained Baptist minister and an ordained elder in the Presbyterian Church. She often shares how the move to an authentic life has had a positive impact on her spiritual life as well as her emotional well-being.

Julie and Joanne have three boys; all married. They also have four grandsons. Dr. Nemecek serves on the boards of Michigan Equality, Soulforce, Michigan Fairness Forum, and PFLAG Jackson as well as the advisory board of Trans Youth Family Allies (TYFA).

Confirmed Guests