The main street in Port Perry was abuzz early on June 10 as many gathered to walk together in the first Pride march, organized by North Durham Pride. Surrounded by a lively group of elementary school children and teachers, high school students and local residents, I was privileged to march with clergy from Greenbank United and Trinity United (Uxbridge), holding the banner of Affirming Places of Worship for Durham Region.
The march was full of energy, smiles, music and dancing. Those who gathered to watch us march down Queen Street to Palmer Park by Lake Scugog cheered us on, waving small pride flags.
We can often forget, in the fun of it all, how important these intentional acts of support and care are for our 2SLGBTQ+ community. As we were marching down Queen Street, I noticed one woman standing on her own. She stood watching us with a very small smile on her face and tears streaming from her eyes. I don’t know her story, but it reminded me that we have a long way yet to go where everyone feels included, loved, safe and celebrated.
During the Pride Picnic, now in its second year, Church of the Ascension helped Port Perry United host a tent where children of all ages could paint rocks in all colours of the rainbow. It was a wonderful late spring day of community care, support and love. As the flags around town proclaim: Small Town, Big Pride!
Submitted by the Rev. Canon Ruthanne Ward, the incumbent of Church of the Ascension, Port Perry.