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Out in Our Faith

Temple Beth El is a founding member of Out in Our Faith, a coalition of many faith communities—Jewish, Christian, Buddhist, Unitarian and non-denominational congregations—in Santa Cruz County (see below). Our mission is to promote the full inclusion of LGBT families, couples and individuals within the area houses of worship that fulfill their spiritual needs. This coalition was founded in 2004 by members of Twice Blessed at Temple Beth El/JCC.  We invite other congregations to join this coalition.

In 2005, Temple Beth El/JCC was honored for this social justice work with the Irving J. Fain Award by the Union of Reform Judaism's Religious Action Center in Washington, D.C. This award reflects our congregation's  core values, an ongoing commitment to social justice work in the greater Santa Cruz community. See more on the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism website.

Since receiving this award, OIOF has expanded our reach to South County and faith organizations not yet included. We started meeting with  high school students to discuss how faith communities are becoming more inclusive of the LGBT community.  OIOF sponsored a community-wide showing of the film "Call Kuchu," a 2012 American documentary film which explores the struggles of the LGBT community in Uganda. More recently we began a luncheon series with faith leaders to discuss relevant LGBT issues.  In July 2016, we lost our beloved founder, Kathy Goldenkrantz.  Since then, OIOF has renewed our commitment to promote the full inclusion of LGBT families, couples and individuals within area houses of worship. 

Current members of the OIOF organizing group are: Senior Rabbi Paula Marcus, Andrew Goldenkranz, Gail Levine, Sharon Papo, and Peg Shemaria-Hedman.

Out in Our Faith Congregation Members

Temple Beth El/JCC
Peace United Church of Christ
St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church
All Saints Episcopal Church
Aptos Community United Methodist Church
Chadeish Yameinu Jewish Renewal of the Monterey Bay
Gay and Lesbian Ministry of Holy Cross Catholic Church
St. Stephens Lutheran Church
Santa Cruz Hillel Foundation
Santa Cruz Religious Society of Friends (Quakers)
United Methodist Church of Santa Cruz
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Santa Cruz County
Calvary Episcopal Church of Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz Zen Center
Le Selva Beach Community Church/United Church of Christ
Inner Light Ministries
Ocean Gates Zen Center
Congregation Emeth
Resurrection Catholic Community
Center for Conscious Living
Vipassana Santa Cruz
Watsonville United Methodist Church
First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Watsonville
Lutheran Community Church, Watsonville 

Mon, July 15 2024 9 Tammuz 5784