Rev. Dee; Thank you for 28 years of Service!!! We wish you and Judy a wonderful Retirement
filled with health, prosperity, and as much fun as the two of you can stand!!! God
Bless You Both !!!
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love God, who have been called according to God’s purpose.
PASTOR RETIRING: PIONEER IN CHAMPIONING EQUALITY
AND UPHOLDING DIGNITY OF HIV-POSITIVE PERSONS
After serving for 28 years as the Pastor of Metropolitan Community Church of Louisville
(MCC-L), Rev Dee Dale has announced her retirement effective at the end of August.
She has been active with MCC-L since 1977 having served on the Board of Directors
and as Music Minister prior to becoming pastor. One of the five longest-term pastors
serving her denomination; Rev. Dee plans to spend her retirement traveling with her
spouse of 24 years, Judy Dale, for as long as Judy’s health allows it. After being
in remission for many years it was recently discovered that Judy’s lung cancer has
The Metropolitan Community Church denomination began in October 1968, predating the
historic Stonewall riots. MCC-L was founded in September 1972, making it one of the
denominations oldest churches east of the Mississippi River. Dale assumed the pastorate
in December 1983. The church is the oldest gay organization in Kentucky.
Rev. Dee’s last Sunday as pastor will be August 28. The community is invited to join
the congregation for services starting at 10:30 AM as she is honored for her service.
Her final sermon will be given during the midweek service the following Wednesday
August 321 at 6:00 PM
Dale known to parishioners and friends simply as “Reverend Dee”, has frequently been
the spokesperson for gay Christians and their acceptance by others, both Christian
and those of other faiths.
Over the decades of service she was often interviewed by the media to present “the
other side of the story” when our community was being bashed. Rev. Dee was a member
of the founding board of the Community Health Trust (CHT), formed as a response to
the health needs of our community just as the AIDS epidemic began. She served on
that board for 11 years, the past four as president. Under her leadership the first
Glade House property was purchased. It became the region’s first residence especially
for people who were HIV positive. For the first few years of the organizations existence,
she was the only woman willing to be involved in CHT. For a number of years Rev.
Dee was the only clergy person in Kentuckiana who would conduct funerals for persons
who had died from AIDS – both men and women. She traveled throughout the area performing
such services because many local pastors refused to officiate. Some weeks she performed
one or more funerals per day, she worked diligently to secure a few funeral homes
willing to embalm and display the bodies of persons who had died from AIDS. When
families couldn’t afford the cost of having a service at a funeral home, MCC-L allowed
viewing and funeral services in their building free of charge. Rev. Dee fought in
Frankfort and won the right for Kentucky nursing homes to accept people with AIDS.
MCC-L sponsored numerous support groups for HIV positive persons and for their significant
others/spouses, family members, and caregivers to address medical issues, spiritual
needs, and emotional needs. She also was one of the first community members to teach
safer sex classes in the community – including classes just for men. Rev Dee has
been a dedicated activist through the years, not only lobbying for GLBT causes in
Louisville and Frankfort but also on Capitol Hill in Washington DC. In 2007 and 2009
she was the only clergy person from Kentucky to participate in the Human Rights Campaign’s
Clergy Call, a lobbying event organized that featured clergy participants from almost
every state. She was part of the Marches on Washington in 1987 and 1994. For many
years of her ministry, it was not unusual for Rev. Dee to receive threats on her
life, which is why MCC-L has had a security team in place to be prepared to take
action should someone enter, ready to attack or kill the pastor, or wanting to leave
a bomb to destroy the church and congregation. In the early days of her ministry,
she never went to a speaking engagement without a security person accompanying her
or participated in a march or peaceful demonstration without security vehicles nearby.
Within the MCC denomination, Rev. Dee has been a Supervising Pastor and mentor/teacher
for over a dozen students and Clergy Candidates. She is frequently invited to lead
Spiritual Renewals in various MCC congregations across North America.