Reconciling Congregation

Fairlington United Methodist Church proclaims without reservation God’s unconditional love and grace, and affirms the dignity and worth of every person as created in the image of God.  We commit to extend Christ’s gospel hospitality, creating a place of safety and spiritual sanctuary for all people.  Therefore, this community of faith welcomes into membership, participation and leadership all persons regardless of age, race, ethnicity, gender, family structure, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, economic background, political affiliation, physical or mental ability, faith history, or life experience.  We recognize among us differences in theology and biblical interpretation, and covenant to accept, respect, and love one another along our faith journeys.  As God loves us, so let us love one another.”

Reconciling Means Welcoming All

A Reconciling Congregation is one that adopts a public statement, which can be inclusive of many people, but specifically welcomes individuals regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. FUMC crafted and adopted a reconciling statement on February 10, 2013 that recognizes and reflects the diversity of our congregation, and extends a wide welcome that includes many individuals and groups that may not always feel welcome at church.

Reconciling Convocation

The Reconciling Ministry Network will have its first national convocation since before COVID in Charlotte North Carolina the weekend of October 13-15:   Early bird pricing before August 1 for the full in-person registration is $450, plus lodging costs and processing fees; there are cheaper in-person daily and two-day options.  Full registration after August 1 is $500.   Or, you can purchase a virtual ticket to attend the event for just $100 and that price is the same through early October. There are steep student discounts for the in-person option.   Our reconciling team is offering up to two $250 grants for anyone from Fairlingtonwho would like to attend in person.   Contact Mark Elder if you have questions or have interest in a grant. 

Justice in Mississippi

Sadly, Virginia’s former Bishop Sharma Lewis has forced two clergywomen in Mississippi who officiated a wedding for two LGBTQ individuals into an involuntary leave of absence in order to avoid a church trial.   One of the clergy still has a source of income and the other does not.   A national effort is underway to send contributions to the one pastor to support her and her family.   Fairlington UMC will give $750 from our Reconciling Fund to assist.   We encourage others to match this gift through individual contributions; your gifts will not be tax deductible.  If you are interested in helping, email and someone will email with details about how to give. 

Fairlington UMC became a Reconciling Congregation on February 10, 2013.  This vote followed a nearly two-year planning and discernment process that began in May 2011, involving numerous educational events, small group meetings, personal stories, and other congregational engagement.  The final congregational vote was 94% to 6% in favor.  A Reconciling Congregation is one that adopts a public statement which, while inclusive of all families and individuals, specifically welcomes persons of all sexual orientations and gender identities who face explicit discrimination in the UMC Book of Discipline, as well as other marginalized groups who often are not fully welcome in churches.


  • 07.04.2021 Reconciling Ministry Report on Developments in the UMC CLICK HERE
  • Timeline of Fairlingtion's Reconciling Movement: CLICK HERE
  • Mark Elder's Blog, Virginian's for a New Thing: CLICK HERE
  • Reconciling Ministries Network
  • Many Voices Web Site (ecumenical):
  • Believe Out Loud (ecumenical):
  • Parents Reconciling Network (extension ministry of the RMN): CLICK HERE
  • Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG):