One of our congregation’s stated values is “Accepting: honouring different ways of thinking, perspectives, languages, cultures, races and genders, enabling the Spirit’s creative spark to bring forth new possibilities.” We affirm that gender and sexuality are gifts of God, and welcome people of all sexual orientations and gender identities.  

For the past several decades, The Presbyterian Church in Canada has studied and discussed questions related to sexuality, particularly questions related to same-sex marriage and the roles of LGBTQI people in ministry. St. Andrew’s participated in these discussions, and in recent years held a number of events for congregational reflection.  

In 2018 our denomination wrote a letter of repentance to the LGBTQI2s+ community and our congregations,  reminding the church of God’s call to be a community where we welcome one another as Christ has welcomed us. Then in 2021, our national governing body (the General Assembly) affirmed that “all people whatever their sexual orientation or gender identity are equally beloved by God.”  

The theological orientation of our denomination tends to be more moderate, but we are also the faith home for persons who lean both liberal and conservative in their viewpoint. Recognizing the fact that many within our denomination continue to adhere to our historic perspective on human sexuality, our denomination in 2021 provided a track for congregations who wish to identify as being accepting and affirming of LGBTQI2S+ persons. St. Andrew’s has aligned itself with this new track. The leadership of our church has adopted the following as the policy and planned actions of St. Andrew’s Church regarding LGBTQI+ inclusion: ·        

  • The Session of St. Andrew’s affirms its understanding of the covenant of marriage as a covenant between two persons.         
  • The Session of St. Andrew’s affirms that sexual orientation or gender identity shall not be a barrier to being called as a minister or ruling elder.       
  • The Session of St. Andrew’s is an affirming congregation who publicly, intentionally, and explicitly welcomes LGBTQ+ persons to full participation in the life of our community.   
  • The Session of St. Andrew’s commits to carrying the work of diversity and inclusion forward in an intentional way. Eg. Continuing education with the congregation (conversation groups); partner with churches that are on this path (Varsity, Knox); create a team or partner with Leading with Care to develop goals and monitor progress.  

Our faith perspective on this matter is captured in a sermon preached here in April 2022. The sermon starts at minute 27:00 of the recording.