Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rouge
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We believe ALL are welcome in the family of God, and we practice a ministry of inclusion and love. We are committed to providing an open and safe community and equipping ourselves to do the work all of us are called by God to do in this world.
We believe that lives are transformed when people are freed from the oppressive religious environment of our day. So we provide, instead, a message of liberation designed to help everyone experience true life through God.
We believe Christian social action can make a difference in our world. And we know that by being real people practicing real worship and real faith, each of us can play our part in making this world a better place for everyone.
Who We Are
Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rouge is a congregation of the worldwide movement known as the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches. Founded in Baton Rouge in December 1983, MCC of Baton Rouge has served our community with a message of God’s inclusive love and a variety of outreach ministries continuously for more than 30 years.
MCC’s primary outreach is to GLBT people, as well as accepting and affirming heterosexuals and anyone else looking for an inclusive message. Everyone is welcome to participate in our ministries and activities.
Among MCCBR’s core values is a commitment to Christian social action and justice, and a natural extension of those values has been the church’s and its members’ involvement in the formation and continuation of the Baton Rouge Pride Fest. But its ministries certainly don’t stop there. In addition to offering uplifting worship celebrations, blessings of GLBT relationships, marriage ceremonies, and much more, the congregation also helps to feed the hungry through its involvement with a local food pantry, partners with other agencies to provide school supplies to children in need, “adopts” residents at a nearby nursing home, provides food and supplies for local pet shelters and much more.
Our Mission and Purpose
Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rouge exists to daily strive to:
- Love as God Loves
- Spread God’s Reign and Good News
- Overcome Injustice and Liberate the Oppressed
- Live as Jesus Lived
- Seek and Teach Faithful Disciples of Christ
- Offer Service and Sanctuary to All
Metropolitan Community Church is compelled by an unfinished calling and a prophetic destiny. We are a global movement of spiritually and sexually diverse people who are fully awake to God’s enduring love. Following the example of Jesus and empowered by the Spirit, we seek to build leading-edge church communities that demand, proclaim, and do justice in the world.
MCC’s Mission & Core Values
MCC Denomination Statement of Faith
Metropolitan Community Churches is one chapter in the story of the Church, the Body of Christ. We are people on a journey, learning to live into our spirituality, while affirming our bodies, our genders, our sexualities. We don’t all believe exactly the same things. And yet in the midst of our diversity, we build community, grounded in God’s radically inclusive love for all people. We are part of an ongoing conversation on matters of belief and faith, shaped by scripture and the historic creeds, buinding on those who have come before us. Our chapter begins when God says to us: “Come, taste, and see.”
“Come, taste, and see.” Jesus Christ, You invite all people to Your open table. You make us Your people, a beloved community. You restore the joy of our relationship with God, even in the midst of loneliness, despair, and degradation. We are each unique and we all belong, a priesthood of all believers. Baptized and filled with Your Holy Spirit, You empower us to ber Your healing presence in a hurting world.
We expect to see Your reign on earth as it is in heaven as we work toward a world where everyone has enough, wars cease, and all creation lives in harmony. We affirm Your charge to all of humanity to care for the land, sea, and air. Therefore, we will actively resist systems and structures which are destroying Your creation.
With all of creation we worship you — every tribe, every language, every people, every nation. We know You by many names, Triune God, beyond comprehension, revealed to us in Jesus Christ, who invites us to the feast. ~~Amen.
MCC Denomination Core Values
Love is our greatest moral value and resisting exclusion is a primary focus of our ministry. We want to continue to be conduits of faith where everyone is included in the family of God and where all parts of our being are welcomed at God’s table.
Offering a safe and open community for people to worship, learn, and grow in their faith is our deep desire. We are committed to equipping ourselves and each other to do the work that God has called us to do in the world.
Providing a message of liberation from the oppressive religious environment of our day or to those experiencing God for the first time is what guides our ministry. We believe that when people are invited to experience God through the life and ministry of Christ, lives will be transformed.
Working to talk less and do more, we are committed to resisting the structures that oppress people and standing with those who suffer under the weight of oppressive systems, being guided always by our commitment to Global Human Rights.
James Hartman is our current Associate Pastoral Leader, and is available for pastoral care and spiritual guidance. Should you have a spiritual need, please send an email or call the church (using the contact information at the bottom of this web page). Your email will be forwarded to IPL James Hartman.
Board of Directors: Morris Welch (Treasurer), Dr. Jaren Kennedy (Vice Moderator), George Outlaw (Clerk), Hope McCorkle (At Large), James Hartman(Moderator).
MCCBR Lay Delegates: Sonji Dominick (Lay Delegate), David Nall (Alternate Lay Delegate)
History of MCCBR
Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rouge was founded on Sunday, December 4, 1983, when a group of about a dozen people gathered at the Lambda Center to form the city’s first congregation of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches (a worldwide movement of open and accepting congregations with churches around the globe).
In August 1990, the church’s name was changed to Joie de Vivre Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rougeso as to emphasize the Cajun French heritage of South Louisiana (with a name that translated to “Joy of Life” MCC). In 2002 the church returned to the simpler name of Metropolitan Community Church of Baton Rouge.
Through the years, the church has been served by seven pastors and three interim leaders. Those were:
Rev. Ron Russell-Coon
Installed as the church’s first pastor on August 26, 1984
Rev. Brenda Hunt
Elected as the church’s second pastor in the fall of 1986 and served through late 1988
Rev. Cindy Drake
Called to pastor the church in March 1989 and served until the summer of 1990.
Served as pastoral leader from August 1990 through September 1991
Rev. Hawk “Nancy” Horvath
Served as pastor from the fall of 1991 through the spring of 1995
Rev. Don Clarke
Served as our fifth pastor, from October 1995 through May 1999
Rev. Bev Stephenson
Served as interim pastor during the remainder of 1999 and throughout most of 2000
Rev. Stephen Moore
Served as the seventh pastor, from March 2001 until May 2006
Rev. Dexter Brecht
served as interim pastor through the remainder of 2006
Rev. Keith Mozingo
began his work as the eighth pastor of MCCBR, from January 2007 through May 2018
served as our interim pastor from October of 2018 through April of 2020 and currently as of April 2021
Throughout the first portion of its history, MCC of Baton Rouge met in various rented facilities – the most notable and long-term arrangement being two stints in what was then known as The Uniting Campus Ministries building on West Chimes Street near Louisiana State University. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, during a period of intentional planning for a permanent facility of its own, the church purchased 6 acres of land in South Baton Rouge with the intention of building on that land. That property later was sold in favor of purchasing the facilities currently owned by the congregation at 7747 Tom Drive in Baton Rouge, which have served as the church’s home and home to the Freedom Center, a center for GLBT community activities since August 2004.
Our Denomination and its History
The Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches:
Since its founding in 1968, MCC has been at the vanguard of civil and human rights movements by addressing important issues such as racism, sexism, homophobia, ageism, and other forms of oppression. MCC has been on the forefront in the struggle toward marriage equality in the United States and other countries worldwide and continues to be a powerful voice in the LGBT equality movement.
MCC’s Christian ministry is provided primarily through 212 local congregations located in 33 countries worldwide.
Click here to access the list of other MCC churches around the world.
A History of UFMCC
In 1968, a year before New York’s Stonewall Riots, a series of most unlikely events in Southern California resulted in the birth of the world’s first church group with a primary, positive ministry to gays, lesbians, bisexual, and transgender persons.
Those events, a failed relationship, an attempted suicide, a reconnection with God, an unexpected prophecy, and the birth of a dream led to MCC’s first worship service: a gathering of 12 people in Rev. Troy Perry’s living room in Huntington Park, California on October 6, 1968.
That first worship service, in a Los Angeles suburb in 1968, launched the international movement of Metropolitan Community Churches, which today has grown to 43,000 members and adherents in more than 210 congregations in 33 countries. During its 49-plus years, MCC’s prophetic witness has forever changed the face of Christianity and helped to fuel the international struggle for LGBT rights and equality. To learn more about the history of MCC Churches, visit www.mccchurch.org.