Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) is excited to announce The Rainbow Initiative, a 2023 project focused on working with Episcopal congregations to bring visibility and aid to LGBTQ+ forced migrants. Participation is also encouraged in an online survey.
“This initiative is a direct response to General Convention Resolution D045 ‘On Supporting LGBTIQ+ Refugees and Asylum Seekers’,” said Sarah Shipman, operations director for EMM. “While EMM has been engaged in this work on the local affiliate level, we see this as an opportunity to further engage the wider church on the plight of LGBTQ+ forced migrants and the ways we can work together to provide education and support.”
EMM is partnering with Max Niedzwiecki, who holds a doctorate in cultural anthropology and whose work has focused on the intersection of forced migration, LGBTQ+ communities, and faith within The Episcopal Church and more broadly. Through this work, EMM will focus on activities in June 2023 including Pride marches, Pride services, and World Refugee Day (June 20), as well as foster new partnerships involving Episcopal congregations, forced migrants, U.S.-based resettlement agencies, community groups, and more. Episcopal Migration Ministries will also be conducting a thorough review of all its materials and procedures to ensure that they are fully inclusive of LGBTQ+ forced migrants.
Everyone connected in some way to The Episcopal Church is invited and encouraged to participate in the launch survey, an opportunity to share their experience, ideas, resources, and interest related to LGBTQ+ forced migration in the context of The Episcopal Church. The online survey will remain open until Feb. 20.