Architectural detail of window arches on Old South Church in Boston

News & Announcements

Old South Church Celebrates Pride and Honors Boston Gay Men's Chorus

On Saturday, June 8, the historic Old South Church in Boston will present the Open Door Award to Boston Gay Men’s Chorus (BGMC), one of New England’s largest and most successful community-based choruses. The organization will be honored during Pride Morning Worship, Old South’s annual, colorful, high-energy service celebrating the LGBTQ+ community.

Founded in 1982, the 200-voice ensemble is celebrated for its outstanding musicianship, creative programming, groundbreaking community outreach, and courageous tours to parts of the world hostile to LGBTQ+ rights. Under the dynamic leadership of Music Director Reuben M. Reynolds III, the BGMC sings a wide spectrum of classical and popular music and creates social change by providing a positive, affirming image of the LGBTQ+ community. BGMC considers itself a Cultural Ambassador — being the first LGBTQ chorus to perform in Poland in 2005, the Middle East in 2015 and in South Africa in June 2018.

Old South Church established the Open Door Award in 2014. Carved in stone above the Portico to Old South’s 1875 National Historic Landmark building are these words from the Book of Revelation: BEHOLD, I HAVE SET BEFORE THEE AN OPEN DOOR. The church takes these words to mean that in God’s name, it is its duty and privilege to pry open doors shut against any persons and to keep oiling the hinges of any doors rusting shut.

2019 marks Old South’s 350th anniversary year. Among other projects and events, the church hopes to mark the occasion with 350 marchers in its Boston Pride Parade contingent. The worship service is at 11 a.m. All are invited to gather for the parade at 12 p.m. at the church.

Previous recipients of the Open Door award include:

  • Traci Blackmon, Associate General Minister of Justice & Local Church Ministries for The United Church of Christ
  • Freedom for All Massachusetts, Organization fighting for transgender equality
  • Adrian Walker, Metro Columnist for The Boston Globe
  • Callie Crossley, Pioneer Broadcast journalist and host of Under the Radar with Callie Crossley,.on WGBH
  • Sarah-Ann Shaw, Boston’s first African-American female TV reporter
  • The Honorable Elizabeth Warren, Senator
  • His Excellency Deval Patrick, Former Governor
  • Larry Kessler, Boston Living Center
  • Dr. Kenneth Mayor, The Fenway Institute
  • Bishop Tom Shaw, Bishop, Diocese of MA
  • Rev Frank Schaefer, Methodist Minister defrocked for officiating at his gay son’s wedding
  • Rev Judy Hanlon, founder of Asylum Seekers Ministry (in Worcester MA for gay people seeking asylum from such countries as Uganda, Kenya, Saudi Arabia)
  • The Boston Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (Abbess Sr. Rosetta Stone)

Katherine Schofield, Interim Associate Minister,
Rev. Nancy Taylor, Senior Minister, 617-571-1459,