HRC LogoOne of the highlights of Wild Goose Festival 2013 was a panel discussion organized by the Human Rights Campaign and hosted by Dr. Sharon Groves, the director of HRC’s Religion and Faith Program.

In Groves words, “2013 will go down in the history books as one of the most pivotal years for religious leaders working on justice issues. People of faith in unprecedented numbers were instrumental in bringing about the tremendous gains the LGBTQ community has enjoyed, culminating in the Supreme Court decision to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). People of faith also saw the gut-wrenching losses to sacred Civil Rights legislation, most particularly in the Supreme Court’s other decision to dismantle the Voting Rights Act, for which many have given their lives. The effects of these two decisions rest heavily on our collective conscience and forces us to recommit to Civil Rights activist Bayard Rustin’s core organizing tenet that ‘we are all one.'”

Sub-titled “Southern Faith Leaders Re-framing the Work for Freedom and Justice,” the panel included Caitlin Breedlove, co-director of Southerners On New Ground (SONG); Bishop Tonyia M. Rawls, founding pastor of Unity Fellowship Church in Charlotte, NC; and Rev. Dr. T. Anthony Spearman, Senior Pastor of the Clinton Tabernacle African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church in Hickory, NC.

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