Aimee Schiefelbein

I support the adoption of the 8th Principle.

Initially, the inner grammarian part of me noticed that this principle does not look like the others and I had some curiosities about the wording. I am in agreement with the content. Through self-reflection and education on the 8th Principle, I have come to realize what I love and appreciate about the wording. The existing principles should, in theory, cover compassion, dignity, and love for those who are BIPOC or in oppressed groups. However, in my opinion, the aspirational and vague nature of our current principles leaves too much to interpretation. I love that the 8th Principle is clear, concise, and grounded. As a white person I also trust that if members of an oppressed group speak, I need to listen and trust them when they say we need these words.

For the most part, as a white queer person I have felt welcomed in the church. I understand this occurred through dedicated efforts and an intentional process the congregation underwent to become a Welcoming Congregation. People are still experiencing discrimination and racism despite our aspirational principles. Institutional and systemic racism is alive and well. I look forward to how the 8th Principle will inform our future Right Relations process and how we can continue to learn and hold ourselves accountable to this work.

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