The New Chapel Unitarian and Free Christian Church in the U.K. has unanimously voted to offer baptisms to transgender people.
Christian Today reports that the decision came about when a 10-year-old girl wanted to get baptized in her new gender.
Jean Clements, worship leader at the church, said, “I felt saddened by the fact that this family were being shunned by many mainstream churches. I would like to thank one courageous girl for inspiring me to think carefully about this issue in the first place.''
Clements added that, although the decision could have been a controversial one, the congregation readily accepted it.
“It felt entirely natural. There was no controversy when they voted at our annual general meeting. They spent more time discussing the autumn fair and whether we might move it to the summer. Now that was controversial,'' she said.
Other Unitarian congregations may soon follow New Chapel Unitarian and do more to include transgender people in their services.
The Church of England is also considering adding services for transgender people, although some people have voiced dissent, stating that God created male and female and that a transgender lifestyle runs contrary to church teaching.
Publication date: February 4, 2016
Veronica Neffinger wrote her first poem at age seven and went on to study English in college, focusing on 18th century literature. When she is not listening to baseball games, enjoying the outdoors, or reading, she can be found mostly in Richmond, VA writing primarily about nature, nostalgia, faith, family, and Jane Austen.