Rainbow commas

In recognition of President Obama’s endorsement of same-sex marriage, this image from the United Church of Christ:

Two things: the slogan “God is still speaking”; and the rainbow comma. (You might have thought it was a single close-quotation mark, but it’s supposed to be a comma.)

(Hat tip to Ben Zimmer.)

The slogan is for the Stillspeaking Ministry, explained here:

In 2004, it was concluded that there was a present and real need for genuine welcome, openness and acceptance for all within the church. The UCC responded to this call of extravagant welcome and radical hospitality with a new branding campaign to proclaim to the world that anyone could find a home in the United Church of Christ.

(Note “extravagant welcome” and “radical hospitality”.)

Then the comma:

In the United Church of Christ, God IS Still Speaking, and we show that with a comma (Never put a period where God has put a comma. – Gracie Allen). (link)

And, from the same site, the rainbow version of the comma:

The Rainbow Comma also celebrates our LGBT sisters and brothers. No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey you are welcome in the UCC.

… Saying a setting of the UCC (a local church, campus ministry etc.) is “Open and Affirming” means that it has publicly and specifically declared that those of all “sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions” (or “lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender” people) are welcome in its full life and ministry (e.g. membership, leadership, employment, etc.) It bespeaks a spirit of hospitality and a willingness to live out that welcome in meaningful ways.

The comma is available in pewter pendants, etc., and the rainbow comma in many forms. Here the rainbow comma is fused with the “God is still speaking” slogan:

On the rainbow as a gay symbol, on this blog:

Gay flags, 8/6/10: link

Return to rainbow flagwear, 8/21/10: link

Rainbow bull, 4/29/11: link

NY logos, 6/25/11: link

Cultural celebrations, 6/26/11: link

It’s heartening to see churches welcoming — even extravagantly welcoming — lgbt people and supporting them, in light of the enormous outpouring of venom from prominent religious figures following Obama’s affirmation of same-sex marriage, based on two of their deepest beliefs: that marriage is the province of the churches, not the state; and that homosexuality is against God’s law.

4 Responses to “Rainbow commas”

  1. arnold zwicky Says:

    Just a note: this is an Obama comma, nicely rhyming.

  2. More gay flag « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] rainbow flag time. Via the Huffington Post, a forthcoming cover of the New […]

  3. arnold zwicky Says:

    Passed on by Lise Menn, from a friend of hers:

    I wanted to be sure that you knew the UCC’s stance of “open and affirming” was not limited to gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transexuals, and queers (cross dressers). It welcomes persons of all races, religions, the handicapped–including deaf, blind, and disfigured — and ex-convicts among others. For a church to be accepted as “open and affirming” it is required to have spent a period of time — 12 to 18 months or so — studying the theological, biblical, biological, psychological, sociological (and I should add, linguistic) bases of what is meant by “extravagant welcome” and “radical acceptance”

    Thought you might be interested in the full scope of what the UCC means by “open and affirming.”

  4. Still more gay flag « Arnold Zwicky's Blog Says:

    […] The image reported in the L.A. Times: “Gay Pride rainbow Oreo sparks 20,000 Facebook comments, debate” by Tiffany Hsu, today. (“More gay flag” on this blog, here; and earlier rainbow stuff, here.) […]

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