Saturday, March 02, 2002

Faith Matters

Message of healing for gays

        Cincinnati is a city in trouble, says Linda Arnest.

        “We have a lot of division and unrest,” says the Clifton resident, “and we're in great need of healing.”

        Ms. Arnest isn't just talking about racial tensions. The gay, lesbian and bisexual community still is reeling from the 1993 approval of Article XII, which bans preferential treatment based on sexual orientation.

        The message of healing from nationally known speaker and Christian leader, the Rev. Dr. Mel White, “is exactly what we need,” she says.

        The Rev. Dr. White will serve as keynote speaker tonight at a banquet for the Greater Cincinnati chapter of PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays).

        On Sunday, he'll preach at 11 a.m. at Mount Auburn Presbyterian Church, 103 William Howard Taft Road, and at 7 p.m. at Metropolitan Community Church, 5501 Hamilton Road, College Hill. The public is invited to the services.

        The Rev. Dr. White and his partner, Gary Nixon, won the ACLU's National Civil Liberties Award in 1997 for applying the principles of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. to the struggle for justice for sexual minorities.

Church reaches out

               St. Paul United Methodist Church gives money to missionaries and provides homeless families with temporary shelter.

        But the Madeira church, which averages 300 on Sundays, wanted to get more involved in the local community. It is launching a series of outreach ministries to help people cope with divorce, chronic illness, grief and interfaith marriages.

        The ministry kicks off with “Seminars for Success,” a free program for the unemployed to build a resume, map job-search strategies and discuss interviewing.

        Although the ministries show Christ's love in a practical way, “I'm not there to preach to people,” says Donna Karda, who will lead the job search seminar. “I'm hoping these seminars help people to get jobs. I hope this gives them the confidence to do that.”

        Seminars for Success will meet Tuesday, March 19 and April 2 from 9:30 to 11 a.m. at the church, 8221 Miami Road. To register: 513-891-8181.

Buddha basics

               Buddhist Cincinnati opens its doors to anyone wanting to know more dharma or the enlightenment of Buddha.

        It offers Buddhist Basics March 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 4011 Allston St. in Oakley. Class will include a to-be-scheduled visit to a local Vietnamese temple. Cost is $30.

        To register: 513-531-6032.

Community seder

               People of all faiths are invited to share the traditional Passover feast at the ninth annual Community Intergroup Seder.

        Sponsored by the Cincinnati chapter of the American Jewish Committee, the seder is an opportunity to learn more about the Jewish tradition and the significance of ritual foods, including matzah, horseradish and parsley.

        Tickets are selling fast for the March 20 feast, which will be at Plum Street Temple, Eighth and Plum, downtown. Tours of the historic temple will follow the meal.

        Call 621-4020.

        For more religion listings, check out, keyword: events.
Send religion news to or contact Richelle Thompson at 755-4144.


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