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Voices of Faith
Before the parade, a transgender preacher, Dr. H. Adam Ackley, led a morning Holy Eucharist service on the street for the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles. Ackley, a former theology professor at Azusa Pacific University, was asked to resign from his position after announcing that he was a transgender man, according to the advocacy group GLAAD.
"We praise you for being who we are, who you created us to be — gay, trans, bi, lesbian, gender-queer and in so many other ways — with greater beautiful diversity than we can ever imagine," Ackley said in prayer.
The diocese has been leading a service before the Pride Parade for two decades, said the Rev. Susan Russell, a priest at All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena. In the first few years, there was suspicion of the group, she said.
"We're here to undo the damage that the religious right has done to Jesus when they portray him as homophobic," she said. "We're here to undo that damage and tell the good news that God loves everybody."