woman dressed in hula skirt and colourful lei beside "F" sign markerA sign bearing a large letter “F” might be easy to spot on an average morning on Memorial Blvd in downtown Winnipeg.

On June 5th, the morning of the Pride Parade, this sign became a veritable needle in a haystack. People with banner surrounded by lots of colourful people in Memorial ParkApproximately sixty people from eight Affirming congregations somehow found each other within a sea of moving, cheering and colourful bodies.

Two teenagers carrying the United Church of Canada Banner amidst multitudes of people

Music boomed and blared from various floats as participants waited, excitedly, for their section to begin moving. It took time: our group arrived before 11am and pulled off Memorial Blvd around noon.

Colourfully dressed people walking on a street


What fun to enter the joyful canal of Parade enthusiasts. Like us, they were bright with flags, banners, signs, capes and hats – everyone proud to “be” and proud to be together. We waved, walked and rolled our way down Portage Avenue, greeting people we knew, greeting those we didn’t.


People carrying Immanuel UC banner in parade   People carrying "You Belong" St. Mary's Road Banner in parade

People walking on street with pride flag and Young UC BannerAfter so many years, it remains important to be a visible, vibrant presence during Pride Week – wherever we live, work and worship. In the coming months, look for more opportunities to gather as Affirming ministries for support, play, education and broader advocacy.

-Dawn Rolke and Twila MacNair