Exploring a Wide(r) Welcome: Resources for Going Deeper and What’s Next

AllianceQ – the Disciples LGBTQ+ Alliance and  Executive Director + Minister Melissa Guthrie Loy

Where do we go from here?

I get paid to answer people’s questions with questions; my role – and yours too, really – is to nurture the next question. Why answer questions with questions? A). I don’t have the answers. B). The context matters. Your context – your story – matters. AllianceQ resources and tools are helpful when used intentionally and organically in each context; nothing is prescriptive but instead invitational.

To write the next chapter, we examine our histories. What has worked well? What didn’t work at all? Who was involved? Who is missing from the story?

The mission of AllianceQ – the Disciples LGBTQ+ Alliance – is to build a just and inclusive church; we lift up and we center marginalized voices. Disciples are most familiar with our resources for Open & Affirming Ministry; with ecumenical partners we provide Building an Inclusive Church trainings. We accompany churches and organizations on a welcoming journey, one that never ends; equipping them to shape communities of authentic welcome and belonging where every body is honored in the body we call the church.

What are the values of your faith community? What makes your church special? What draws people to the church and keeps them there? What does the general public say about the church or organization? In your public proclamations, does your ministry say what it means and mean what it says? Do actions give life to your words?

Check out this article: Say what you mean and mean what you say, why and how O&A
Watch this four-minute video from Alysha Laperche: Why O&A, The Power of Naming

We’re invited to pursue deeper relationships with one another and new relationships with neighbors. We’re all invited to examine our definitions of family and community. May we ask hospitable questions to learn about one another, may we engage gracefully with one another, may we seek connection. May we care for each other. May we strive to bridge differences and celebrate diversity. May we shape communities of authentic welcome and belonging.

Resources + Tools for the Journey

Some highlights:


Thank you for being part of widening the welcome.


Regional Contact Rev. Laura Jean Allen, AllianceQ Secretary and Pastor at First Christian Church Helena laurajean@fcchelena.org