Spirit of Stonewall: 50 Years On is a community commemoration of a pivotal moment that changed the course of history for the LGBTQ community in the U.S. and everywhere. After decades of police raids at gay establishments that destroyed people’s lives and reputations, in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, the patrons at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village – many of whom were transgender, non-binary/gender non-conforming, and drag queens and kings – fought back. There was much violence and bloodshed, and the riots lasted for six days. But, it is widely recognized as one of the first, big seismic shifts in the LGBTQ movement in this country and since then has been commemorated annually around the world.
Spirit of Stonewall will be an occasion to celebrate LGBTQ pride and progress, as we mark the highpoints and low points of what started as the “gay liberation” movement, recalling strides made, as well as the setbacks faced by our community over the last five decades. This event is not just for LGBTQ people, but family, friends, and supporters also.
A broad range of voices will be heard from a diverse roster of speakers and performers, artists, thinkers, and activists, including award-winning playwright Lisa Kron, Lavendar Light Gospel Choir, Stonewall Ambassadors BETTY, queer theologian Patrick Cheng, activist Wazina Zondon, and St. Pat’s for all founder Brendan Fay. The participants represent many perspectives, faith traditions, and civic affiliations, and will offer personal reflections, remembrances, calls to action, and live musical performances.
St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church and Pro-Cathedral will host Spirit of Stonewall on behalf of the parishes and people of the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island. The event is not a religious service, but a community gathering at which people of good will are invited to stand together with LGBTQ folk and commit ourselves to the cause of justice, full inclusion and dignity for all.
All are encouraged and welcome to join in celebrating the Spirit of Stonewall!