The Rev. John McLaughlin is the Senior Pastor of St. Jude’s Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) in Wilmington, NC (www.stjudesmcc.org). He holds Masters degrees in Faith & Religion, and Business & Finance. Prior to moving to Wilmington, John lived in Washington, DC, and worked at MCI Telecom as Senior Manager of Marketing. While in DC, John was an active member of the LGBT community working with such organizations as the Whitman-Walker Clinic (a leading LGBT health & wellness center), Gay & Lesbian Hotline, a variety of LGBT-oriented committees and events.
Spirituality has been an important part of his life connecting his authentic gay self with his sense of being. It was within this context that John’s passion to explore the intersection of justice and faith took root, and his desire to promote compassion and healing became a life calling.
“I knew I was gay from an early age, and my story echoes the story of thousands of others, with rejection from family and friends, bullying, and the witness of murder and death. These, along with the AIDS crisis, awoke within me a desire to help those who suffer – physically, mentally, and spiritually.
“Since coming to Wilmington, in addition to my work as the Pastor of an LGBT-oriented community of faith, I have served on the Boards of Equality NC, Cape Fear Equality, Faith Leaders United (an interfaith organization), and have served on committees with Wilmington PRIDE, and the Frank Harr Foundation. Currently, I serve on the Steering Committee of SAGE Wilmington.
“I look forward to adding my voice and skills to the Frank Harr Foundation as we seek to lift those whose voices are often diminished or silenced.”