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2010

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Thank you
for participating
in MCC’s Fifth Annual Easter Offering for Global Ministries,
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Because of you—
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Our special offering will be used for two urgent global purposes.
ACAPULCO 2010 EPHESIANS 3:20

BE A GEM Campaign. Global Justice Institute.


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Tearing Down Walls. Building Up Hope! 1.866.HOPE.MCC


MEET SOME OF MCCs GLOBAL LEADERS

Eliana Ferreira Vilela MCC Espirito Santo Vitoria, Brazil


I'm Eliana Ferreira Vilela, interim pastor of Metropolitan Community Churches in Vitoria, Brazil. I am to be ordained as Pastor in May. I have been involved with
ICM in this city from its early days.
ICM in Victoria has played a big role here as a voice of liberation and proclamation to all peoples. We have appeared before the municipal government of the
town attending the LGBTT Forum of Religions and we maintain contact with the government and other religious groups. We are recognized and participate in
discussions of public policies affecting LGBTT people. We are recognized as an inclusive church and a fighter for rights. We maintain contact with the human
rights office of the Presidency of Brazil.
Brazil is about to pass a law against homophobia, which is great progress, as many lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transvestites and transsexuals are killed in our
country. We fight to end this prejudice and crimes against the LGBTT community. Unfortunately, Brazil is homophobic.
I believe that our participation in General Conference will provide us with new courage and exchange of experience. Certainly we will leave strengthened for the
work among the members of the local church and our journey in our city. The conference will warm us to bring the flame of the Metropolitan Community Churches
forward in our city.

Albert Najera Flores ICM Paz y Alegria (Joy and Peace MCC) Nicaragua Mission Groups, Panama
I was a member of the church in Managua and in 2003 was ordained deacon and interim pastoral leader. Subsequently I did a course of theological studies
and in 2006 was ordained pastor of ICM in Nicaragua. With a background in communications, I have worked in radio, television, magazine writing, and
public relations, as well as with NGOs doing HIV/AIDS prevention.
While both Panama and Nicaragua are very conservative societies, Nicaragua is making progress on the issue of non-discrimination. There are no laws
criminalizing homosexuality so people feel free to demand more rights.
Panama, however, is a society of double standards. Any person who appears “different” is alienated and discriminated against.Gay men in particular are targeted
for rejection by family and even violence and imprisonment by society.
ICM is the only church that has a radically inclusive position on sexual diversity for members and pastors. At ICM, together we celebrate life and sexuality as
a gift from God for our lives.
I would like to attend General Conference to learn more about the impact of MCC worldwide, and to attend workshops that address our challenges and
dreams. I look forward to sharing everything I learn with the local church in my country. General Conference is an opportunity to exchange and interact
with other pastors and build bridges of support between us; this strengthens our souls and our spirits.

Ceejay Agbayani Quezon City MCC Quezon City, The Philippines


I got hooked up with MCC originally in 1999 when a friend invited me to attend a Bible study with mostly bisexual and gay men in Diliman near the University
of the Philippines. At first I was annoyed with the invitation but my friend was insistent and I decided to go. I was intrigued with this group and how they reconciled
sexuality and spirituality. I was hooked. I joined every single meeting of MCC—Bible study, prayer meetings and Sunday worship services. We met at the
Shalom Center in Manila.
When the pastor, Rev. Edgar Mendoza took sabbatical, I was appointed to an Interim ministry team and was later appointed Lay Leader. In June of 2002, I entered
Union Theological Seminary of the Philippines. There are people in the seminary who believed in my potential and the need for a ministry to gay people in
the Philippines. They raised the money to support my studies. I was not the first homosexual to enroll at UTS, but I am proud that I was the first openly gay seminarian
to graduate from UTS, and was awarded the Bishop LaVerne Mercado Award in Ecumenics!
MCC changed my life. It was MCC that transformed my heart and my well-being as a person. It was MCC that opened my eyes to the beauty of being gay.
Since establishing the MCC in Quezon City, more and more Filipinos are requesting an MCC for their provinces and cities. I am willing to be a missionary for our
church. The willingness is there but now, the resources are lacking. But we do our best to move with or without resources, though it is always better if there is!

Joseph Nyaisa People of Substance Nairobi, Kenya


If there is any individual desperate to be at General Conference next year it is me! I wish to come together with friends in Jesus’ name and share about myself and
my ministry group, People of Substance and speak about how God has created us wonderfully, beautifully and “MCC-ally.”
My prayers are for this group in Kenya who keep sharing the passion of serving God no matter the humiliation, hatred and discrimination directed at us. Now,
with over 30 strong lesbians and 10 gay men in the church I’m confident that one day we will be free to worship and share God's name without any prejudice.
I want to meet other MCCers from other regions just to connect with them and learn from them. My REVM trip to South Africa was a miracle, and now I truly
look forward to this opportunity.

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