In September 2018, I was hired as the Pam Byers Memorial Fund Project Archivist to work full-time on collecting and making accessible the history of the movement for LGBTQIA+ inclusion in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. Thanks to the generosity of donors and the willingness of Presbyterians to participate in this project, PHS has been able to add a substantial amount of material to our collections that document LGBTQIA+ history from the late 1960s until today.
William Phelps Thompson clippings and photographs, 1966. Pearl ID: 1947
--by Dean H. Lewis
William Phelps Thompson, the Kansas lawyer who was elected Moderator and then Stated Clerk of the General Assembly, was not noted for admitting error. However, in an October 15, 1991 letter, he publicly acknowledged having changed his mind on a contentious issue on which his earlier position had been critical.
The next U.S. presidential primary election will feature at least three viable women candidates—a development that would have no doubt thrilled Presbyterian minister and leader, Eunice Poethig. PHS recently completed the processing of Poethig’s papers, and they illuminate her advocacy work in expanding the numbers of women and people from other marginalized communities serving as leaders in ministry and civic life.
Eunice was born in 1930 to Pete and Juliet Blanchard, and they...
The Presbyterian Historical Society has created a timeline of LGBTQIA+ related history in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The stories included show how church members’ perspectives as well as the language used to speak about sexuality shifted throughout decades of advocacy work by LGBTQIA+ Presbyterians and allies. Click on the image below to view the timeline: