Happy St. Valentine’s Day (or, for the more cynical among us, Happy Single’s Awareness Day). Many say that Valentine’s Day is merely a “Hallmark Holiday” and doesn’t hold any significance. However, the roots of this day are from the Catholic tradition, dating back to 500 AD honoring Saint Valentine. The romantic legends about St. Valentine, although not based in fact, seemed to have persisted through the years, and as a result, there are stores have a strange red and pink hue to them starting sometime around February 1st. I shouldn’t rag too hard on Valentine’s Day because this year it marks my parent’s 29th anniversary. I hope each of you that have a special someone in your life get a chance to enjoy a nice evening out together or just have a fantastic time enjoying each other’s company.
Last week, Dave spoke on the Creating Change conference from which several us recently returned. This was my second time as an attendee (even though I had to come in late due to work conflicts), and my first time to Minneapolis, Minnesota. I thought it may be good to re-emphasize a major component of the conference which was called “Practice Spirit, Do Justice.” As it mentioned on the website, this initiative was the culmination of many years of relationship building and organizing across pro-LGBT religious and spiritual communities. The goal of this special mini-conference at Creating Change is to build stronger alliances between secular and religious communities. This emphasis is part of the movement’s trend to re-take the identity of faith and spirituality from the Religious Right. It is, in essence, an affirmation that sexual minorities can be people of faith too, and express that faith to affirm their significance and worth with their Creator.
And, while we’re on the subject of change, I have an announcement to make. I could litter this part with every cliché in the book; so many that you may throw tomatoes at your monitor. So, we will skip that, and I’ll stick with just one. There is an old proverbial saying that goes, “All good things must come to an end.” In doing some curiosity research on this saying, I learned the original form of this omitted the word “good” from the saying. I like that approach, because I believe gives the statement a less cynical outlook. It would be preferable that bad things end too. Perhaps the spirit of the message is that it is inevitable that some things just come to a natural conclusion in some way, in their own time. So without further delay, it is the time for the unpleasant news that this will be my last regular edition of The Messenger for the time being as I have resigned my position as Senior Vice President and as Media Relations Director with Affirmation.
It has been an honor to serve Affirmation in various capacities, from a group representative, Conference Director and as Vice President / Assistant Executive Director for the past 2 years. I will continue to volunteer behind the scenes with Affirmation’s technology initiatives, including our social networking presence (Facebook and the like), our websites and the Proclamation blog. I hold all those who have mentored and guided me through these roles with high esteem and regard. I hope that the friendships that I have made throughout this time will outlast my departure from these leadership positions in Affirmation. I firmly believe that Affirmation has had and continues to have a significant positive impact on the lives of sexual minorities within the Mormon Church. I continue to hold the highest regard for the organization’s purpose and goals.