May 25, 2009

Church Experiment #21: New Spirit MCC

We all have agendas. I like to believe I am fairly open about mine. For example, this week’s church will allow me to discuss something I am passionate about.

Men and women should have the legal right to marry a same-sex partner. Denying that right is unfair, oppressive, and goes against everything we value as Americans. Churches (and their pastors) can decide on an individual basis whether to perform the ceremonies, but legally, I don’t understand how this country gets away with denying a basic right to a select group of the population. [Happy to report that this is no longer a debate. Anyone can marry the person they love in 2017, regardless of gender. About time. Now let’s hope it stays that way.]

But I don’t want this whole chapter to be a platform for the gay marriage debate, so with the admission of my agenda out of the way, let’s move on to the church service.

New Spirit Metropolitan Community Church ( is located in Northside, one of the most popular gay-friendly communities in Cincinnati. Right across the street is a gay bar called The Serpent, whose dress codes requires that, “a major article of leather be worn.” Needless to say, I had no idea what to expect when I walked into the church building Sunday morning. Clifton United Methodist (Church #4) is open to the LGBTQ community, but New Spirit MCC is a church basically made up of all members from that community.

To finish reading about this experience or any of the reflections from my 52 visits, please purchase the full book here.