Welcome to Time to Embrace, a Web site dedicated to respectful dialogue and reconciliation around the inclusion of our gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender sisters and brothers in Christ.
As a Presbyterian, I belong to the reformed tradition in which change is both possible and necessary in Christian life. Scripture also teaches me that Jesus “gave us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18), and I feel so strongly that my calling as a minister is one of reconciliation. I hope that our dialogue and study together on this Web site will reconcile us all to the fine future for marriage and ordination which God has in store for us.
About Rev. Janet
Born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA of parents from generations of Presbyterian faithful, I was ordained in 1977 as Minister of Word and Sacrament and became an Instructor in Homiletics and Liturgics at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. Seeking deeper experience in ministry, I then served Morningside Presbyterian Church, the United Church of Christ in McKeesport, PA and Mellwood Presbyterian Church, each for about three years. I was elected Moderator of Pittsburgh Presbytery in 1987.
With two sons and a physician spouse on call every third night, I paused in serving as the pastor of a congregation and began attending with my family the Community of Reconciliation, an intentionally interracial, interdenominational and inclusive church in the heart of Pittsburgh’s university district. Through the years at Community of Reconciliation, I have sung in the choir, taught toddler Sunday School, been interim co-pastor, served as a Parish Associate, and remain active in the community to this day. When my children started school, I returned to Duquesne University and earned a Ph. D. in Spirituality with a call to be a “pray-er,” to find a way in this world to pray without ceasing.
Called to the ministry of reconciliation and inclusion, I joined the Taskforce on Ministry with Sexual Minorities of Pittsburgh Presbytery in 2000. My participation in the work of this taskforce led to being asked by Nancy McConn and Brenda Cole to officiate at their June 2005 marriage ceremony. After a year of prayerful discernment and preparation, I presided at the joyous ceremony celebrating Brenda and Nancy’s sacred love and commitment to each other. The Presbyterian Church (USA) tried and unanimously acquitted me in the fall of 2008 for officiating at Nancy and Brenda’s wedding.
I now sit on the board of directors of Demos, a non-partisan public policy research and advocacy organization, and also on the board of the Pittsburgh Presbytery Foundation, an entity that supports the work of my local presbytery.
In November of 2008, I became co-moderator of the national board of More Light Presbyterians. In this role, I have sought to grow the ever-expanding conversation about the inclusion of our lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender sisters and brothers in Christ. My hope is that this Web site will offer us another space, an online space, for respectful dialogue and reconciliation.
I welcome the opportunity to continue our dialogue. You can email me at: RevJanetEdwards@gmail.com
If you’d like to share a resource that could shine more light on our conversation, please email me as well!
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