Room for All - Spring 2017
"I've come to expect excellence from RfA conferences."
(From a 2015 participant)

Room for all is pleased to announce our fifth biennial conference:

Take a look at this amazing line-up of workshops, preachers and presenters!
For links to the latest schedule and other information, head over to our website.
On-line registration begins May 1st, with special early-bird rates!
"This conference taught me so much. It gave me hope and it renewed my faith. I was turning away from the church, because I didn’t feel like I belonged."

RfA conferences are life-changing for many people - you've told us that.That's why we work hard to make it possible for LGBTQ people and allies from all across the RCA to attend. In past years, thanks to generous supporters, we've been able to offer need-based travel assistance and full scholarships for students at RCA-affiliated colleges and seminaries. But costs are going up, and once again we're depending on our underwriters.

Perhaps you'd like to create a matching challenge in your congregation, or classis, or circle of friends? Maybe your church would cover the registration cost for a few of its members? Some of you oversee a family foundation, or have a match program at your job.Maybe you'd like to host a local benefit event? If you can help, we've prepared two brief resources that may assist. Here's a general levels of giving guide, and here's a one-page conference summary that includes a tiered list of what your contributions might make possible (a great insert for a "friends and family" letter). Donors who designate conference gifts will be listed in the conference folder.

"I feel validated that I too can be a person of faith despite my sexual orientation. It was the most comfortable I've felt around church people in a very long time. This is HUGE!"

Huge, indeed! Please help us make this happen! Contact us at 201-364-4538 with questions, or send a designated check to RfA, P.O. Box 11495, Albany NY 12211.

* The Room for All Board thanked outgoing members Rev. Miriam Bush, Jane Dickie, Rev. Brad Redeker and Rev. Rob Williams, and welcomed new members Rev. Sam Clover, Rev. Dr. Lynn Japinga, and Rev. Chad Tanaka Pack. We also hired a new part-time bookkeeper, Rev. Debra Jameson. Read more about them here!
*  RfA Staff accepted an invitation from Mid-Hudson Classis to present a 3-hour "Building an Inclusive Church" event to take place on April 22nd. If you would like to bring a full or modified BIC to your area, contact RfA's Community Coordinator, Cameron Van Kooten Laughead.
*  RfA welcomed Clinton Avenue Reformed Church of Bergenfield, NJ and Brookville Reformed Church of Brookville, NY to our roster of welcoming and affirming churches, which now numbers 33 congregations!
*  Since January, 2017, eighteen more people have added their names to a list of LGBTQ-affirming RCA-ordained minsters, now totaling 220 signatories!

RfA in the RCA
*  Room for All was grateful to report recently that two proposed amendments to the RCA Book of Church Order that sought to enforce a prohibition of same-sex marriage were defeated.  We've been encouraged by reports of honest conversations, courageous spokespeople, and expressed desire for the RCA to avoid legislating around matters of biblical interpretation and to adhere to our current polity which assigns authority at the classis level. RfA will continue to support, educate and advocate for the welcome and full affirmation of LGBTQ people in the life and ministry of the RCA.
*  RfA looks forward to being represented at the meeting of the RCA General Synod.  Although the Synod has once again declined our request to have an information table, we will be available with information about our ministry and to offer support to delegates.  Once again, we will offer an inclusive worship service as an alternative option for Synod delegates and guests.  
*  RfA joins our siblings in Christ throughout the RCA in thanking Tom De Vries for his six years of service as General Secretary.  Tom recently announced his resignation, effective at the conclusion of General Synod in June. We invite you to join us in prayer for the future of our denomination as together we seek to reflect the inclusive love of God made known to us in Jesus Christ.

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