Washington, DC August 28, 2017 — Today, The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries ( "TFAM" ) joined the National Action Network, Reverend Al Sharpton and one thousand other ministers and clergy from 31+ states and diverse denominations, ages, and backgrounds to convene at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, located at 1964 Independence Ave SW, for the "1000 Ministers March" and prayer vigil to reaffirm faith leaders' commitment to the social justice movement and to stand in solidarity in the spirit and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. During the march, faith leaders of all ages and denominations will unite to send a public message that they will hold the Trump Administration and Attorney General Jeff Sessions accountable in the wake of Charlottesville, an increase in hate crimes, mass incarceration, and ongoing discrimination.
TFAM's Presiding Bishop, Yvette Flunder will speak during the march about the intersection and need for unity between the modern day civil rights movement and the gay rights movement. "If we don't come together about this — civil rights and gay rights — we will continue to be divided and they will continue to use this as a wedge issue in our elections. We have so much more to lose if we don't come up with some common theological themes to move all of our efforts forward," says Bishop Flunder.
From bathroom issues to marriage equality to service in the military, TFAM and Bishop Flunder believe that there are far too many commonalities between the movements for there not to be a direct and concerted effort toward a unified front to combat the repressive and discriminatory actions of the Trump Administration.
Following today's march, Bishop Flunder, who is well known for her stirring performance on the original version of Walter Hawkins' gospel classic song, "Thank You Lord", will join the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus ( "SFGMC" ) on The Lavender Pen Tour across the southern United States in historic civil rights cities like Birmingham, Alabama on a mission of community activism and compassion to support LGBTQ+ rights in the deep south. Once again, Bishop Flunder will be preaching, performing and writing about the intersection of the gay rights and civil rights movements in a call for unity.
Bishop Flunder continues, "I am weary of having to fight these battles separately. I can't separate the fact that I am both black and a same gender loving woman."
"It is our hope that the music will encourage LGBTQ+ people and our allies to come together, provoke conversations and action around civil liberties for all, while raising funds for local LGBT organizations," SFGMC said in a statement about the tour.
WHERE: Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial
1964 Independence Ave SW, Washington, DC 20024
Monday, August 28
10:00 a.m. Ministers and March participants gather at King Memorial
11:00 a.m. Pre-program, including prayer vigil ceremony
12:15 p.m. March begins along specified route
2:00 p.m. March concludes
WHO: Reverend Al Sharpton, Founder and President, National Action Network
Bishop Yvette Flunder, Presiding Bishop, The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries
Over 1,000 clergy from 31+ states, from all denominations, ages, and backgrounds
About The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries ( www.radicallyinclusive.com ): The Fellowship is a coalition of Christian churches and ministries, which recognize the need for networking, accountability, fellowship and resource facilitation. We are a trans-denominational fellowship that in voluntary cooperation is self-governing, self-supporting, and self-propagating.
For More Information on The Lavender Pen Tour: www.sfgmc.org/lavender-pen-tour/ .