Reverend Gil Caldwell
On Saturday, February 9, about 85 people gathered at Saint John’s UMC in Austin to hear Rev. Gil Caldwell share his journey toward justice – “Injustice Anywhere is a Threat to Justice Everywhere” (MLK): Racism, Sexism, and Heterosexism. Rev. Caldwell is a retired United Methodist Minister and a 1951 graduate of Austin’s Anderson High School. He is a long-time activist in the Civil Rights Movement, including the Selma to Montgomery March, the March on Washington, D.C., and the March in Boston against school segregation. Rev. Caldwell wrote the following about our conversation together.
“We gathered to celebrate and energize our continuing efforts to push, pull and pray in ways that The United Methodist Church would rid itself of its language and legislation that declares; “The practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching”. We have never been as clear about slavery, racial segregation and prohibitions against the ordination of women being “incompatible with Christian teaching”. But, we have chosen Lesbians and Gays as being needful of this language and legislation. And, The UMC continues to debate what its response should be to transgender persons and same sex couples. I used as my theme the question posed by James Baldwin; “Who wants to be integrated into a burning house?” I spoke to them about my involvement in Truth in Progress http://truthinprogress.com/ and the Church Within A Church Movement, http://www.cwac.us/ suggesting that support of TIP would be helpful and involvement in CWAC would complement their efforts to transform the UMC.”