The Upstairs Lounge Fire


MCC Perseveres in Wake of Tragedy

Church Strives Following Fire

New Phase of Growth, Renewal—Pastor

The Metropolitan Community Church in New Orleans, which reportedly lost one-third of its total membership in the tragic Upstairs Lounge fire last year, has entered a new phase of growth and spiritual renewal, according to the new interim pastor, the Rev. Elder Richard C. Vincent, of the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches.

The Rev. Mr. Vincent has taken a leave of absence from his position as pastor of the Dallas, Tex. MCC and will remain here until the New Orleans church, still in a mission category, has been chartered and a permanent pastor is secured.

The MCC mission here has been without a pastor since the Rev. William Larson was killed, along with 31 other persons in the June 24, 1973 fire. Because of the loss of members and other hardships, the congregation is now in a fund-raising campaign.

The University Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches was begun in 1968. It strives, through lectureship and other educational programs, to promote a greater understanding and acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle as a valid way of life, according to the Rev. Mr. Vincent.

MCC New Orleans strives to communicate that it is continuing and growing following the tragic loss of members at the Upstairs Lounge.
Source: The Times-Picayune, February 16, 1974
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