National ONA Gathering Registration

More Info and Registration


National ONA Gathering is the biennial family reunion of the Open and Affirming movement in the United Church of Christ! Members of any church—ONA or not-yet ONA—are welcome to attend. Expect a celebration with exuberant music, inspiring preaching, and workshops that will feed your mind and soul. Especially this year, when the Religious Right and their allies in federal and state governments are renewing their attack on the basic civil liberties of LGBTQ Americans, our growing community of churches needs to respond with confidence, commitment and faith. Much of this National Gathering will focus on how ONA churches can act faithfully in this crisis. We’ll learn best practices from vital and growing ONA churches. And, as is always true at our Gatherings, we’ll explore the intersections of our movement with other movements for social, racial, economic and environmental justice.

Do you have a question not answered on this page? Please contact Kimi Floyd Reisch at



Living Our Covenant: Into Life

Focus Verse

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness.” (Galatians 5:22)


Tuesday-Thursday, June 18-20 (OWL Training pre-event begins June 17. ONA YYA and ONA Consultant pre-events begin with lunch on Tuesday.)


Best Western Plus Milwaukee Airport Hotel and Conference Center
(ADA Accessible)
5105 South Howell Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53207

To reserve rooms at our rate of $139 per night, please call the hotel and ask for the Coalition block.

Best Western is a very short distance from Milwaukee International Airport. For participants staying downtown, the hotel is served by the Green Line bus.


Keynoters (pictures and bios coming soon!)

Rev. Sonny Graves
Rev. Mak Kneebone
Andy Lang

Worship Leaders

Rev. Lesley Jones
Rev. Janice Steele
Rev. Kevin Tindell


Kimi Floyd Reisch

General Synod ONA Banquet

Our ONA Banquet is one of the signature events at General Synod! This year our keynoter is the Rev. Justo Gonzalez II, interim Conference Minister of the Illinois Conference. The dinner is Friday evening, the day Synod convenes. Registration through the General Synod page at


Workshops are designed to help ONA congregations live into their covenant in new and life-changing ways. An introduction to ONA will also be available for non-ONA churches that are taking their first steps, or simply curious. The workshop list will be posted here in April.

Coalition Choir

It’s a tradition! If you love to sing, you’re welcome to attend rehearsals in our schedule (below) for the Coalition Choir, which will sing during worship and also bring music to our General Synod banquet. More information will be emailed to registered participants in early June.


We’ll post titles and descriptions of keynote presentations and workshops in early April!

Monday June 17

8 amOWL Begins
9 amOWL Training Pre-Event Begins
12:00-1 pmOWL Lunch
2-3:15 pmBreak
5:30-6 pmOWL Dinner
6:30-9 pmOWL Resumes

Tuesday June 18

7-8 amBreakfast
8:30 amOWL Resumes
10-10:15 amOWL Break
10:30 amGathering Registration Opens
12-1 pmLunch for OWL and Registered Afternoon Participants
1:15 pmAfternoon Pre-Events Begin
4:15 pmAfternoon Pre-Events End
4:30-5 pmCoalition Choir Rehearsal
5-6:45 pmGathering Social Hour
6 pmOWL Ends for the Day
7 pmZOOM PLENARY: Gathering Open Worship with Coalition Choir, Inspiring Preaching! - Preacher: Kevin Tindell - Worship Leader: Lesley Jones - Music: Patrisha Gill

Wednesday June 19

6-7:30 amBreakfast (for those staying at Best Western)
7:30-8 amAddiction and Mental Health Mutual Care (separate meetings)
8:10-8:45 amBible Study and Prayer
8:45-9 amWelcome and Announcements
9-10:15 amZOOM PLENARY: Welcome from ONA Coalition President Mak Kneebone - Greetings from Karen Georgia Thompson, Rhina Romas (Proyecto Encuentros) and ecumenical guest - State of the ONA Movement by Executive Director Andy Lang
10:15-10:45 amBreak, Choir Rehearsal
10:45-12 pmZOOM WORKSHOP: Deeper Conversation with Karen Georgia Thompson, candidate for Associate General Minister for Global Engagement
10:45 am-12 pmWorkshop Session 1: Advocacy Training (led by Naomi Washington Leapheart)
12 pmmOWL Ends
12:15-1:15 pmLunch: Tailgater Buffet with Burgers and Wisconsin Brats, vegan options
1:30-3:45 pmZOOM PLENARY: Intersections of Sexuality, Race, Ethnicity, Gender and Embodied-ment - Sonny Graves and Nikira Evans-Hernandez
3:45-4 pmBreak
4-5:30 pmZOOM PLENARY: White Privilege in LGBTQIA+ Communities
4-5:30 pmSpecial Caucus for People of Color with Naomi Washington Leapheart, Faith Director at National LGBTQ Task Force
5:30-6 pmChoir Rehearsal
6-7 pmPre-Concert Reception and Light Dinner with Cash Bar
7:15-9 pmPerformance and Concert: House of Drag and Bobby Jo Valentine (ZOOM)
9-11 pmYoung Adults Gathering and Social Time

Thursday June 20

6-7:30 amBreakfast (for those staying at Best Western)
7:30-8 amMental Health and Addiction Mutual Care (separate meetings)
8:10-8:45 amBible Study and Prayer
8:45-9 amAnnouncements
9-10:15 amZOOM PLENARY: Millennials and Post-Millennials in ONA Churches - Panel Discussion facilitated by Sonny Graves
10:15-10:30 amBreak
10:30-11:45 amZOOM PLENARY:
11:45-12:15 amChoir Rehearsal
12:15-1 pmLunch
1-2:15 pmZOOM WORKSHOP: Queering the Bible - Robert Shore Goss
1-2:15 pmWorkshop Session 2: Our Whole Lives - ONA Churches and the Disability Movement - Genderbending Starts in the Skin
1-2:15 pmZOOM WORKSHOP: Bi/Pansexuality - Kimi Floyd Reisch
2:30-3:35 pmWorkshop Session 3: ONA Churches and Mental Health - Fran Bogle and the Just Peace Players - Asexuality - LGBTQ Community Centers
3:35-3:45 pmBreak
3:45-5:15 pmZOOM PLENARY: Mental Health and Disability in LGBTQIA+ Communities - UCC Disabilities Ministries and UCC Mental Health Network (ZOOM)
5:30- 7 pmZOOM PLENARY: Closing Worship with Coalition Choir, Inspiring Preaching! - Preacher: Janice Steele - Worship Leader: Lesley Jones - Music: Patrisha Gill
More Info and Registration