Welcoming Ministries is a ministry of Gloria Dei members and friends intending to provide affirmation and support for lesbian, gay, bisexual , transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) persons and allies in the community. It overlaps with RIC (Reconciling in Christ) and Reconciling Works efforts within the congregation and Lutheran community, but also provides space at Gloria Dei and partnership with community support groups.
Gloria Dei has been an officially welcoming and affirming congregation since the 1990s. Within the Lutheran community, it is the first RIC congregation in the Northeastern Minnesota Synod, welcoming LGBTQ persons into all aspects of ministry and leadership, and establishing a chapter for Lutherans Concerned North America (now called Reconciling Works – www.reconcilingworks.org). Members of Gloria Dei have brought forward resolutions at our synod assemblies, advocating for the ordination of gay and lesbian pastors in life-partnerships – an official position of the ELCA since 2009 – and advocating against bullying. Gloria Dei has also been a resource congregation for other congregations in the region considering the process, including Messiah Lutheran Church in Mt. Iron, which became RIC in 2010.
Welcoming Ministries also provides space for support groups at Gloria Dei, and works with other inclusive efforts in the community.