Religious Leaders Respond To Anti-Gay Attacks

July 24, 1998

The current attacks on homosexuality are not about faith, truth or healing. They are attempts to reshape the nation into a narrow fundamentalist image, and our public officials are falling prey to this manipulation.
Reverend Dr. Mel White, Metropolitan Community Church (former ghostwriter for Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson)

People of faith have mobilized nationwide to stand for equal treatment of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people. We refuse to be erased from the religious landscape of this country.
Laura Montgomery-Rutt, National Organizer, Equal Partners In Faith

Pro-gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) religious leaders will hold their first national news conference to respond to the recent escalation of homophobia by the christian right. The press conference will be held on Friday, July 24, 1998 at 10 am, at the Washington Plaza Hotel, 10 Thomas Circle, in the Franklin Room.

"These ad campaigns are not isolated events. They are part of a coordinated strategy to lobby political leaders and stop progress toward equal rights," said Urvashi Vaid, Director of the Policy Institute of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

Speakers at the press conference will include Rev. Mel White, Metropolitan Community Church; Dr. Marjorie Hill, Unity Fellowship Church; Rev. Rainey Cheeks, Inner Light Unity Fellowship; Rev. Meg Riley, Unitarian Universalist Association; and Lee Walzer, World Congress of Gay & Lesbian Jewish Organizations. Other faith leaders will be available for questions.

The unprecedented national Religious Leadership Roundtable is co-convened by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and Equal Partners In Faith. The Roundtable gathers representatives of over 30 national faith based organizations who support equality for GLBT people, including, among others:

  • Unitarian Universalist Association of America
  • American Friends Service Committee
  • Dignity USA
  • World Congress of Gay & Lesbian Jewish Organizations
  • Reconciling Congregations Program
  • Disciples Justice Action Network
  • Methodist Federation for Social Justice
  • The Interfaith Alliance
  • Unity Fellowship Church
  • New Ways Ministry
  • Integrity
  • Affirmation
  • Lutherans Concerned
  • More Light Presbyterians
  • Metropolitan Community Church
  • The AIDS National Interfaith Network


The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.