New Journey Lutheran is a Reconciled in Christ congregation. The Reconciling in Christ (RIC) Program of the ELCA includes congregations, synods, colleges, seminaries, and other Lutheran organizations that publicly welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. RIC organizations have a statement affirming this welcome by specifically saying either, “LGBT” or “people of all sexual orientations and gender identities” in their statement of welcome. New Journey became an RIC congregation in June, 2017. The congregation has hosted an inclusivity workshop and a community forum with transgender people.
“I gazed around church as our congregation was assembling for worship. I saw a number of people of Scandinavian heritage. I also saw several families who have escaped the horrors of South Sudan and suffered much hardship. My friend was there who comes from South Korea and daily prays for her family. Several are from Europe, Finland, Germany, England. Our beloved Pastor is from Canada. We have a close relationship with the Native American Urban Ministry in Phoenix. We have several handicapped members and even a service dog, Buddy. Our church is accepting and inclusive; all are welcome. We receive communion together, pray together, do outreach together. This is all because Jesus taught us and died for us. God raised him from the dead. We rejoice today and sing ‘Alleluia!'”