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The 2022 General Assembly adoptedaconfessiontoGodand LGBTQI people, confessing the harm caused by homophobia, transphobia, heterosexism and hypocrisy in The Presbyterian Church in Canada, and commit- ting the church to a true change of hear t and behaviour. Members of the denomination are encouraged to work individually and as congre- gations and cour ts of the church to live out this confession so that harm does not continue.
This confession is addressed to God and to each other in the presence of the whole commu- nity of believers. It presupposes the existence of a breach, or a falling short, that runs contrary to God’s desire for how people live with and treat each other. It calls the church to: acknowledge harms done; seek forgiveness from God and those who have been harmed; stop causing harm; repent of wrongdoing; and begin a new journey of reparation, res- toration and reconciliation within
the community of believers. ThroughtheLifeandMission Agency committee repor t, the Assembly received information about how the church is suppor t- ing healing related to the harm that LGBTQI2+ people, their families and faith communities experi- ence because of homophobia and transphobia in the denomination. Resources to assist in this process can be found on the Sexuality web page of the PCC website at pres-
Policies, procedures, docu-
ments, resources and practices were updated to reflect the full inclusion of all people. A new resource was also created: Guid- ance to Help Amend Policy, Pro- cedure and Practice to Reflect the Church’s Decisions about Gender and Sexuality. In addition, guide- lines have been developed to help courts and committees of the church be safer spaces, as well as a resource to equip the church to resolve disputes that may arise within church courts related to
inclusion. Congregations, pres- byteries, synods, camps and theological colleges are encour- aged to consider ways to provide pastoral care among LGBTQI2+ people and their families.
The full confession was read during the Assembly in a ser- vice of worship led by the Rev. Dr. Daniel Scott and the Rev. Dr. Bob Faris, followed by the hymn, Sing a new world into being, performed by Chris Fischer, a member of the committee that prepared the confession.
Excerpt from The Presbyterian Church in Canada’s Confession to God and LGBTQI People
All: Let us pray.
One: In response to the Holy Spirit’s action in its midst The Presbyterian Church in Canada comes before God in the pres- ence of one another to confess its sins to God, and to LGBTQI people.
The church has wounded many through its practices of exclusion
and hurtful treatment. Thechurchseeksyourforgive- ness, O God, and the forgiveness of all whom we have harmed.
All: We offer this confession in humility, desiring to go a new way. One: Creating and Covenanting God, you created us in your own image.
In Christ, you call us to be a welcoming and nurturing com- munity, to love one another as Christ has loved us.
Yet we have ostracized and excluded LGBTQI people
from full life within the body of Christ.
We have often turned the courts of the church into places
where those who are not straight or cisgender are attacked, shunned and belittled.
We confess that we have failed
to love one another as Christ commanded us and we have dis- rupted our covenantal relationship with you...
One: God of justice and mercy,
Professor Brett H. Meyer.
Summerlea was only meeting on- line, and we agreed to set a date when the congregation could gath- er in person to hear the apology.
A few weeks before Easter, I learned that the congregation was planning to return to in-person worship. I reached out to their minister, the Rev. Dr. Christine Marie Gladu, and Darryl, who is now the minister at Roxboro United Church, to see if we could schedule a time for me to travel to Montreal and join in a ser- vice of worship. We agreed on Sunday, May 1. Unfortunately, I came down with Covid and was not able to make the trip. Since he was present during the initial apology to Darryl in August 2021, I asked Brett Meyer if he would be
we praise you for the presence oftheHolySpiritpromptingusto work purposefully and compas- sionately, to find new and just ways of living out that larger story of loving God and neighbour. Help us to overcome the pride that covers up wrongdoings, the indifference that stands in the way of feeling, and the fear that stalls change.
All: God of justice and mercy, we turn to you.
Only you can help us to do this hard work of repairing, restoring, reconciling and healing.
Fill us with courage and hope
as we commit to working for the restoration of your church and our relationship with one another, and for the collective flourishing of all people for your glory. Amen.
To read and download the full confession, visit lgbtqi-confession. The video pres- entation of the confession from General Assembly is available at
The Rev. Darryl Macdonald preaching during the service.
willing to read the letter of apol- ogy on my behalf.
The service was live streamed, so I was able to participate in wor- ship and witness the presentation of the apology virtually. Christine and Darryl led the service togeth- er. Darryl preached, sharing parts of his story, as well as reflecting on the meaning of the apology and the work the PCC still has to do. Professor Brett H. Meyer did a great job of reading the apology with sincerity and grace.
Moments of grace have oc- curred throughout the experience of offering the apology to Darryl on behalf of the church. And Dar- ryl, again, showed graciousness later that day when he wrote to express gratitude.
 Confession to LGBTQI People
 LGBTQI is an acronym used to refer to people whose sexual orientation is not heterosexual and/or whose gender identity does not conform either to binary male/ female categories or the “assigned” gender at birth. LGBTQI is an acronym for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, Intersex.
  A Service of Apology
  By the Rev. Dr. Daniel D. Scott, Moderator of the 2021 General Assembly and minister at St. John’s Presbyterian Church in Bradford West Gwillimbury, Ont.
In 1995, the congregation of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Lachine, Que., sought to call the Rev. Darryl Macdonald as their minister. The decision of the Presbytery of Montreal to sustain Darryl’s call to St. Andrew’s Pres- byterian Church in Lachine was overturned by General Assembly in 1996 because he disclosed that he was in a same-sex relationship. The members of St. Andrew’s had supported Darryl’s call, with the full knowledge that he was in a committed relationship with another man. After General As- sembly overturned his call, the congregation decided to leave The Presbyterian Church in Canada so that they could continue their min- istry with Darryl as their leader. In 2005, Darryl was ordained in the United Church of Canada and St. Andrew’s joined with Summerlea United Church.
Following the adoption of the Rainbow Communion’s recom- mendations to the 2021 General Assembly, the Assembly instruct- ed the Moderator to write letters of apology to the Rev. Darryl Mac- donald and to the former congre- gation of St. Andrew’s Lachine, for the harm The Presbyterian Church in Canada caused by overturning Darryl’s call.
The first meal that my wife, Kelly, and I had with someone outside our “Covid bubble” was in Mon- treal, Que., with the Rev. Darryl Macdonald. Last August, when I saw that COVID-19–related restrictions were being eased, I reached out to the Rev. Sa- rina Meyer, minister of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Montreal, about the apologies to be writ- ten to Darryl and the members of the former St. Andrew’s Presby- terian Church in Lachine, as Sa- rina was the commissioner who introduced the motion at General Assembly. After a helpful conver- sation with Sarina, I phoned Dar- ryl. He was already aware of the
decisions made at the Assembly and knew the purpose of my call. I suggested it would be helpful for us to meet in person and asked if he would be open to joining me for dinner.
Darryl’s husband, Chris Mara- goudakis, along with Sarina and her husband, Professor Brett H. Meyer, arranged a time for the six of us to meet. At the restaurant, Brett took the lead and offered a toast to new beginnings. I then ex- plained to the table that I would like to extend an apology to Darryl on behalf of the 2021 General Assem- bly for the harm he experienced in the PCC. Darryl was gracious in response, and I assured him that a more formal letter of apology would be written shortly. Brett then asked if he could pray a blessing on our meal and our time together. We spent about three hours talking about ministry, life and COVID-19.
As par t of the conversation, we discussed how best to arrange for a letter of apology to be shared with the members of St. Andrew’s at their new church, Summerlea United. Because of the pandemic,

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