2018 Leadership Development Cohort
Each year, The Reformation Project selects a cohort of LGBTQ Christians and allies to educate and train about the history, theology, and intersections of LGBTQ inclusion in the church. They participate in an online study and conversation process for three months, culminating in a four-day summit together in person, processing what they've learned and preparing to help lead in the work to bring full inclusion to the global church. Support them individually below, or support them as a team by clicking here.
Here is this year's cohort of leaders:
Benjamin Coakley is a recent graduate of Spring Arbor University, an evangelical college in Michigan where he studied theology and worship ministry. During his time there, he began asking the question: what will it take for the Church to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly in the twenty-first century (Micah 6:8)? Through studying Scripture, learning from Christians with marginalized identities, and discovering his own queerness, he had an answer: full, intersectional inclusion of LGBTQ+ folks in the Church. Ben is a songwriter, a theology nerd, and an aspiring educator. He believes that art, education, and relationship have the power to bring about creative change in the world. As a white, cisgender man, he is still learning how to step aside and listen to voices that have often been ignored, even within the LGBTQ+ community. Most of all, he is excited to learn from and grow with The Reformation Project family!
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Brandon Jackson grew up in a small town in South Georgia where he was taught at a young age that his queer identity was something to be ashamed of. Growing up it was just his mom and two sisters in the house. His dad wasn’t present in his life and he longed desperately for male attention. Initially he attributed this to his dad’s absence, but as he grew up he realized that he had an exclusive attraction to men. He's always attended church out of routine, but he met Jesus in a personal way his freshman year in college. Ever since then he's been on a journey of reconciling his faith with his sexuality. He currently live in Athens, GA and works at the University of Georgia. He is a Christian and he is a gay man. He's excited to be a part of the cohort and looking forward to learning more about ways to advocate for inclusion.
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Brittany Potter is currently a junior at the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg. She is studying education with the hopes of making a positive difference in the hearts of the generations of the future. The only churches she ever knew growing up were very conservative and particularly harsh to individuals of the LGBTQ community. After seeing many gay and lesbian brothers and sisters exiled from the church, Brittany could not sit back and be complacent. She made the choice to leave those churches and join Redeeming Church where all people are welcomed and affirmed. She is also serving on the Leadership Team for Redeeming Church. Through being a part of this church she has seen God’s love poured over people of all backgrounds without exclusions. She is passionate about LGBTQ inclusion in the church because she recognizes that God’s promise of love is for everyone, not just a select few. Outside of church and school, Brittany is passionate about meeting new people and experiencing new things.
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Caitlin J. Stout is an unapologetically gay Christian, doing her best to navigate faith, academia, and activism while attending an Evangelical university. She is passionate about LGBT equality in Christian higher education, and has worked as an organizer and advocate for closeted students on her non-affirming campus. She is also a writer, blogging about the intersections of faith and sexuality with the goal of helping Queer folks recognize their status as beloved children of God. Caitlin’s professional interests include sociological theory, sexual ethics, identity formation, and suicide prevention among LGBT youth. Her personal interests include coffee, glitter, haircuts, and breakfast food. She is currently serving at an Episcopal church and is in the process of enrolling in a Master of Divinity program. She believes that reformation is possible, and hopes to play a small role in teaching the Church to love and celebrate its queerness.
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Carla Sofía Vargas is a teacher, entrepreneur, and proud Nicaraguan. In church, she fell in love with Jesus, but not just as The Savior, but Him as the perfect example of love, rebellion, and courage. Since she was eighteen years old she was sure of one thing: she had the call for ministry. Almost immediately she had to face the reality of her sexual orientation, and being in Nicaragua, a really patriarchal and traditional country, it was hard. It took her years to come to terms with her sexuality and her love for God because in her country there are literally zero conversations regarding LGBT inclusion. This made her feel like an outsider in every space: for the Church, she was a sinner, and for the LGBT community, she was just a ¨Jesus Freak¨. Now she knows God indeed called her, but for a very specific work: to be an agent of change for her fellow LGBTQ brothers and sisters that had to leave their church, family, and friends for being who they are, a perfect creation of God.
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Christine Uhlich's journey began with a wonderful childhood, born and raised in the Midwest, the oldest of four daughters. In junior high, her faith began to come alive and flourish within Fellowship of Christian Athletes. From that time on she found herself serving in churches or parachurch ministries in a variety of ways, including small groups, Alpha, and overseas missions. Eventually after some nudging from the Holy Spirit and friends she entered seminary and completed her MDiv. Her first pastoral position was an associate pastor, which she loved with all her heart. It was during this time that her world imploded. Her church was dividing in part because of the LGBT conversation, and her own struggles with same sex attraction came to a head, again. Through a great deal of work, prayer, counseling and time she eventually reconciled her sexuality and her faith. She feel more peace and more security in Christ than she ever has. Her heart is to help others, especially those who’ve incurred pain in the church, to connect with and experience the love of the Heavenly Father.
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Ciyadh Wells is a doctoral student and graduate research assistant with Ideas for Creative Exploration (ICE), an initiative for interdisciplinary research in the arts at the University of Georgia. She is a graduate of the University of Memphis and the University of Louisville. Her area of focus is the intersection between classical music, visual art, and the African diaspora. Ciyadh is a member of the second cohort of the Graduate Student Leadership, Engagement, and Development (GS LEAD) at the University of Georgia. She maintains a career as an international concert guitarist and educator. Outside of performing, Ciyadh spends her time advocating for social and environmental justice movements and is working to become a more active faith leader in the community where she currently resides.
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The Rev. Darci Jaret serves as the Minister Artist-in-Residence at Park Avenue Baptist Church. Darci has led groups in communal art making for worship, pastoral care, or spiritual development in multiple faith communities, small groups, a children’s home, national Christian conferences, retreats, and more. Darci leads the creative community group that meets weekly and a bi-monthly event called the Creative Outlet that connects craft and theological topics of the sermon series. Darci founded a ministry called Art in the Image because she believes deeply in the capacity of art to hold a diverse theological perspective. This is why Darci has been attracted to the work of The Reformation Project. Darci lives in Atlanta with her wife, and our newly expanded family! They all enjoy homesteading and raising chickens and bees. They spend their time building interfaith, anti-racist community, celebrating Shabbat on Fridays and going to church on Sundays. Pronouns: She/Her or Them/They
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Diana Kyle’s motto is to “entertain or educate, and whenever possible, do both at the same time.” This manifests throughout her work as certified special event professional, volunteer administrator, and alumni relations manager at The King’s University in Edmonton, Canada, where her job is literally to throw parties, learn people’s stories, and brag about their accomplishments. When she’s not on campus Diana is an ardent foodie, patron of the arts, part-time philanthropist, and curator of hilarity. Diana has a heart of gold, contagious curiosity, and stubborn streak (or so she’s told). As a queer Christian, Diana has a deep desire to facilitate reconciliation between LGBTQ+ and Christian communities. She has a heart for the marginalized and is actively working toward creating opportunities for dialogue instead of debate. She believes strongly that we all have more things in common than things that divide us. Diana is thrilled to be part of The Reformation Project’s 2018 cohort and looks forward to sharing what she learns with anyone who will listen.
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Donald Lawrence Scherschligt is a writer, graphic designer and activist in Sacramento, CA. He graduated in 2016 from Westmont College, where he led Spectrum, a group dedicated to fighting injustice and creating community for queer students on campus. Since graduating, he's worked as a designer for Faithfully LGBT and the Gay Christian Network, and he organizes Campus Pride's annual Shame List, the nation's only listing of the worst universities for LGBTQ youth. He currently works for Level Ground, a Los Angeles-based non-profit, as the editor-in-chief of a monthly online publication (first issue in February 2018) dedicated to uplifting marginalized voices in popular media and discovering new forms of dialogue around spirituality, gender, race, sexuality and pop culture. As a member of the cohort, he's excited to learn from his peers about their visions of reformation in the church and to build spaces of rest, contemplation and peace for reformers.
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Eliot Stegall is a female-to- male transgender person and is 27 years old. He is engaged to an incredible woman and plans to get married in September 2018. He was born and raised in Huntsville, AL, and still lives there to this day. He grew up in a Freewill Baptist church, and had a very fundamentalist upbringing. Growing up, he was in deep denial of his gender identity, mostly due to the doctrine in which he was raised. As he got older, through prayer, study of scripture, and fellowship with others, he allowed himself to live more authentically. Since he began his transition he has vowed to live out loud and to use his experience in being transgender to help bridge gaps between affirming and non- affirming Christians, and to help others toward reconciling their sexual orientation and/or gender identity with their faith and the people with whom they fellowship.
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Emma Loane identifies as a Christ-follower and a lesbian. While growing up in Northern Ireland, Emma experienced a call to ministry. After completing her undergraduate degree at University of St. Andrews, Scotland, Emma relocated to the US where she earned her MA in Religion and Youth Ministry from Memphis Theological Seminary. Over the past 10 years, Emma has served as a youth minister in a variety of congregational contexts, Emma finds herself firmly rooted in the United Methodist Church. Since coming out, this rootedness has proven problematic and painful. Based on her own experience, as well as her witness to the experience of other LGBTQ+ Christians, she feels the need to become a more vocal advocate for inclusion within our faith communities. Emma currently serves at the Pastor of Student Ministries at a UMC church in southwest Indiana. She lives with her wife, Sarah, and their three fur babies.
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Grayson Hester hails from a small town in East Tennessee, near Knoxville, Gatlinburg, and the Great Smoky Mountains, where he was born, raised, educated, and well loved. His experiences as a gay Christian in rural Appalachia lend him an appreciation for both the mountain and the metropolis alike; he’s just as likely to be found blazing a trail as he is tearing up a dance floor. He studied for five semesters at Belmont University in Nashville before transferring and finishing his education at Carson-Newman University in his hometown, Jefferson City, Tennessee. Grayson hopes to learn how better to love himself and others through this cohort, in addition to figuring out what the heck he’s called to do in this crazy post-grad world. Grayson is currently taking a gap year and looking towards the possibility of divinity school. Until then, he can’t wait to dive into this crucial, incredible work!
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Helen Hudgens has lived and worked in the context of multiple intersections over the years: evangelical and Anabaptist, white and black, america norte e sul, settler and indigenous, urban and rural, church and academy, straight and gay. She was born and raised in rainforest Brazil, came to Chicago to go to college and never left, and currently lives alongside an intentional Christian in Evanston, Illinois. She is the proud mother of two young adults, serves on the music ministry team at Second Baptist Evanston, a historic black congregation, and is on faculty at North Park University School of Music in Chicago, where she co-directs the Gospel Choir and is the advisor for the undergraduate Queers and Allies group. She avoids teaching summer school so she can follow her passion for the outdoors – which takes her regularly to mountain trails in Colorado, Wyoming and California, or canoeing and sailing the rivers and lakes of the upper Midwest. Pronouns: she, her, hers
Jason Fredlund was born and raised in CT and currently lives, loves, and works in Hartford. He holds a few different jobs all centering on the work of equity and social justice. As a Program Director with The Discovery Center he facilitates anti-racism and anti-oppression training with folks involved in public education. He is on the Board of Directors for the Minority Inclusion Project and is a community organizer and activist. His background in experiential education and Christian theology informs his approach to educational equity and community transformation. Jason passionately believes that the world can be a better, and more just place. He is dedicated to the personal process of examining identity, challenging bias, understanding systems of oppression and creating opportunities to share power and privilege while inviting others into a similar process of transformation and change. He is a queer, progressive Christian committed to collective liberation who thinks that honesty, vulnerability, laughter, and human connection are the greatest gifts we have to offer the world.
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The Rev. Justin White, an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church, is pastor at Greenville First United Methodist Church in Greenville, MS. He was born and raised in Pelahatchie, MS. From a young age, Justin knew that was calling him to be an advocate of justice and love. Justin went to undergrad at Mississippi State University and was involved in athletics as a trainer for baseball and women’s volleyball. He is a huge Mississippi State fan, especially of women’s basketball! He graduated in 2006. Justin went to Duke Divinity School for his Masters of Divinity and graduated in 2010. Since returning to Mississippi in 2010, Justin has been involved in movements of justice, peace, the arts, and community organizing. In Greenville, Justin is on the Arts Council Board and a member of their community based recovery committee. He is also the proud dad of two cats, Hocus and Pocus.
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Leanette Pokuwaah has lived in a lot of places but would say she is from Chicago because she has grown up and lived in Chicago for the longest. She is a Jesus lover and a worker for justice. She is heavily involved in her community. She has several years of experience working with young adults providing an open and friendly atmosphere for folks to be able to grow spiritually by connecting with God and knowing themselves more in a deeper and new way. Leanette has a passion for the Enneagram and uses it has a tool for spiritual formation and self-discovery for herself and others! Outside of her love for the Enneagram, Leanette enjoys writing short stories, poems and music as well as playing musical instruments and singing. Leanette identifies as straight.
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Lynn Webster fell in love with Chicago’s diversity and boldness as a teenager. She is an artmaker reflecting on home and place – contrasting love of cities like Chicago with wild places like Idaho and the Everglades. She studied at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and abroad and has taught at colleges in Illinois and Idaho. A traveler on the journey of life, Lynn Webster sees queerness as a gift of God. A member of the PCUSA, she strives to make the church a place that welcomes young people and supports queer youth in their struggle to define themselves as queer Christians. She believes in the connectedness of learning and teaching. She feels strong connections to the mystical tradition of Christianity and uses a singing bowl as part of her daily morning prayer. Pronouns: she/her
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Matt Boyko grew up in Atlanta, Georgia but now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Even though he grew up in the ‘Bible Belt’, he grew up outside of the church because it always felt like a hostile place for him. In college, he discovered a version of Jesus he had never met before— a Jesus who passionately loves him and desires an intimate, thriving relationship with him. Since then, he has invested in a college ministry, worked at a church in the Atlanta area, and enjoys leading community groups. While he believes in the local church model, he also feels the weight of the tension between the church and the LGBTQ community. He’s learned to love this tension and is passionate about reconciling these two communities, building pathways for others to discover the same God he knows and loves, and equipping leaders to write a new story for the church. Pronouns: he/him
Michael Forrester was born and raised in Alabama, but recently relocated to Atlanta, Georgia to be closer to the city's diverse LGBTQ Christian community. He did not grow up in a religious environment, but took himself to church as a teenager desperately hoping to reconcile his faith and sexuality. However, after high school graduation he left his Baptist church, believing that the Church held no space for him. He went on to study philosophy in college and graduated from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a Bachelors degree in Asian Art History and Literature. Despite being self-exiled from the church, Michael never stopped questioning his relationship with God, and lived for most of his adult life as a staunch Existentialist. Following a period of great personal strife, Michael had a series of experiences that opened him up to Christianity again, and eventually led him towards a faith that exists in the tension between his former Atheistic views and an affirming, life-giving theology. Michael is grateful to be a part of the 2018 Leadership Developed Cohort and hopes to use this opportunity to bring about greater inclusion between the LGBTQ community and the church in the Atlanta area. Following the Cohort, Michael plans on attending graduate school in Atlanta to pursue a master's degree in counseling. His dream is to open a therapy practice which addresses the intersections of faith and sexuality. When he's not trying to reform the church with his colleagues, Michael can be drinking iced coffee, reading queer literature, and spending too much time on Instagram. Pronouns: he/him/his
Michelle Morrow was born and lived most of her life in California, except for a year in Orlando, FL (to work for an ex-gay organization in 2002) and two years in Nashville, TN (to begin life with her wife in 2014). The dozen years in between those two life changing events were a journey of deep struggle as she tried to force herself to fit into an ex-gay narrative, finally came to a place of honesty within herself, set out on a complete rethinking of her theology, and reached a place of peace between her sexuality and faith. She graduated from Fresno Pacific University (2002) with BAs in English and Biblical Studies. She went on to complete an MA in Theology at Fuller Theological Seminary (2006). Michelle taught in the Biblical & Religious Studies department at FPU for a few years, but has since shifted her career toward student affairs. In that pursuit, she completed an MA in Higher Education Administration through Louisiana State University (2016). More than anything, she wants to be authentic as she follows Jesus in his kingdom work of reconciliation.
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Peter Young is a husband, father to four grown children, and a professor of psychology at Simpson University and Shasta College in Redding, California. Sensing God’s presence since childhood, his life has been a pilgrimage with many developmental landmarks. He spent 16 years practicing psychotherapy in the Air Force. His world has been one of privilege almost everywhere and, as is sadly most often the case, rarely recognized. Calling it his “conversion”, he became an affirming LGBTQIA ally in the Fall of 2013 in the middle of a page of James Brownson’s book Bible, Gender, Sexuality. One week later, he agreed to officiate the wedding of two of his female students. It has been the experiences of his students and his wife and their diverse journeys that has led to the breaking of many “old wineskins” in his life. There will be more, certainly.
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Rachael Ward grew up in a southern evangelical rural town in South Georgia. Without the language to accompany her questions around sexuality, she didn't take a spiritual journey into sexuality until her mid-twenties. There she faced questions of existence, battled suicidal thoughts, substance abuse and wandered the wilderness for nine years. After developing a strong sense of her person, she began utilizing her story to offer compassion over those navigating the difficult spaces and questions of personhood and their love for Christ. Rachael believes in the true identity of the church, as the bride of Christ and intention in its creation to be a place of refuge, growth and wrestling questions with our creator. She is no stranger to non-affirming spaces, as she has actively held conversations with pastoral roles in churches within her home of Atlanta, GA. Currently, she attends Park Avenue Baptist Church, a bold and inclusive church where she leads a small group focused around reclaiming the text. She also blogs and documents her personal journey through her platform of queerinfaith.com. Her hope during this year's cohort is to better equip her mind, body and spirit for the work of the church. Rachael is the Vice President of Marketing for the Boys & Girls Clubs of North Central Georgia. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking with her German Shepard, reading and going on daily adventures with her partner, Chelsea.
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Rachel Hester is an Afro-Latina writer, activist, and photographer born in Panama and living in North Carolina. She is passionate about friendship, feminism, and re-imagining Christian faith. Rachel has spent much of her time deepening conversations about racial and LGBTQIA justice in non-religious spaces, adding complexity to these conversations by drawing from her life as a person living outside many social, identity-based and ideological boxes. Rachel is hoping to take what she has learned from these spaces to the Church. When Rachel is not writing or working, she can be found playing video games with her friends or playing her guitar.
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Rochelle Stripling Palmer is a social worker turned science educator. She served on the Board of Directors for CenterPeace, a nonprofit that seeks to create safe spaces in Restoration Movement churches for LGBTQ individuals and their families. Rochelle helped initiate the ACU LGBTQ-Straight Alliance Homecoming Gathering. She has spoken at church conferences on the importance of supporting LGBTQ Christians. Rochelle believes Christians have been asking the wrong questions about LGBTQ communities and the most important question is this: How do I love well the people God has set before me? Rochelle has degrees from Abilene Christian University and The University of Texas at Austin. Rochelle and her husband, Sean, have been married for twenty years and are raising two daughters near downtown Houston, Texas. Rochelle enjoys any time shared with Sean and the girls, laughter, good conversations with friends, reading, long dinners, coffee, and San Antonio Spurs basketball.
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Rose-Ingrid Gracia hails from Ottawa, Ontario, and is a singer, songwriter, spoken word artist, writer and actor. Under the stage name of Grace Defined she released her debut EP This Love in August 2015 and toured in the US and Canada in fall of 2016. Outside of the arts, Rose-Ingrid has an extensive background in ministry. Her time in youth and campus ministry as well as in missions challenged her to wrestle with her beliefs and the role of the church in her communities. In that time, she grew in her passion for justice, the poor, racial equality and LGBTQ inclusion. In the last year, Rose-Ingrid stepped away from full-time ministry to give space for her shifting faith to grow as well as to pursue other interests. She is now based in Toronto where after being cast in productions of Dreamgirls and Hairspray, has discovered a love musical theatre, while also completing a diploma in Independent Music Production at Seneca College.
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Saajidah Abdul-Hameem is a native northern Californian, with roots in Jamaica and currently residing in Houston, TX. Before TRP, she participated in the Peace Corps and lived in Indonesia for 2.5 years and speaks Bahasa Indonesian fluently. Currently, she is a part of an organization called Mission Year, which intertwines two of her favorite things: faith and social justice. She also enjoys reading, writing, traveling, exercising, eating and stimulating conversations. She's excited about joining the legacy that is the Leadership Cohort and really looking forward to learning new things and meeting new people through this experience.
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Sheri Chambers is a pastor's kid from Cleveland, OH, but she's been living in Nashville for about seven years. She came to Nashville to study music at Belmont University and it was during her college years that she realized God's call on her life. After answering the call, she spent the last two years of college experiencing the painful death of her earthly dreams and the birth of her heavenly dreams. Her dream is to reform Southern churches by starting with college students in an LGBTQ Bible study, then expanding that Bible study into a program for affirming/questioning churches. She imagines this program to include leadership reformation/training, spiritual/mental health counseling, inclusive sex education, and racial reconciliation movements. Until that dream comes true, she enjoy kickboxing, traveling, watching LGBTQ YouTubers, reading, working full time and spending time with family and friends.
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Steff Fenton is a self-identified lesbian Anglican Christian from Sydney, Australia. She is involved in a number of LGBTIQ+ Christian advocacy groups, including The Reformation Project, Evangelicals for Marriage Equality and Equal Voices. Steff builds her life on ‘The Rock’ Jesus Christ, formed by Scripture, and believes in the one body of Christ. Steff has over 6 year’s professional experience in non-profit communications. She volunteers with refugees, Indigenous and other youth, as well as her local hockey club. Steff holds a Bachelor of Media from Macquarie University, and hopes to start a Bachelor of Theology in 2018. On the weekend you can find her playing hockey, sipping coffee, reading, or at the beach. Steff has been with her partner, Alexandra, for 2 years and is encouraged by the recent legislation of same-sex marriage in Australia. Steff believes binary gender definitions are restrictive but prefers the pronouns she, her and hers. Steff blogs at queervangelical.com.
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Sunnie Isla Townsend is a white, queer FemDiv at The Seattle School of Theology & Psychology and co-founder of Inverted Truths, a online community space celebrating LGBTQIA stories and subverting the empire. Her life's work will be centered around individual and community care working with folks who have survived religious trauma impacting their sexualities, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Sunnie first attended The Reformation Project in 2017 and was inspired by the possibility of LGBTQIA inclusion and racial social justice making a meaningful impact on the church in the United States. She is committed to cultivating spaces where discourse with difference can exist with a commitment to decentering whiteness. As Sunnie lives out bravely and beautifully, she enjoys mixing original drinks for friends and driving in her beloved truck, Spurg, the only man she ever loved.
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Tara Limbaugh is a graduate of the 2014-2015 Pacific School of Religion (PSR) Changemaker Fellowship program where she was awarded a Certificate of Spirituality and Social Change. She is currently in her final year as a Master of Divinity candidate at PSR, and is a candidate for ordained ministry in the United Methodist Church. She's serving as a CCPO (Chaplain Candidate Program Officer) in the United States Navy student chaplaincy program. Prior to seminary, she obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Nonprofit Business Administration from the University of South Carolina, Upstate, and worked as a professional grant writer and development associate. She served on the board of Upstate Pride and organized various events for the rural LGBT community. She is passionate about new ministry initiatives based on Wesleyan theology, military chaplaincy, Clemson football, good BBQ, and following the Way of Jesus. She lives in Berkeley, CA.
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Timm Holt was married, had two children, but after fifteen years divorced. Now as a retired geriatric physician, he lives in Chicago with his partner. Saint James Episcopal Cathedral is his faith home. Timm held numerous medical leadership positions and published widely in geriatrics. His world changed in 1985 when, with his partner, he was diagnosed as HIV+. Timm has wrestled with God over being gay, but when his partner died in 1997, he had to address death. Devastated, Timm confronted God asking, “Why am I still alive?” He has survived AIDS, and as a member of Center on Halsted’s senior voice and health ambassador at Howard Brown Clinic, Timm gives back to his LGBTQ community and when he is ordained an Episcopal deacon, Timm plans to better address their spiritual needs. Timm is a writer with two published works. His greatest pleasures traveling, and being an Education for Ministry mentor.
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Victoria Slabinksi is a Filipino-American queer/demisexual Christian from Ohio. She is finishing her undergraduate work in music, social justice, religion, and women’s/gender/sexuality studies at Miami University and is currently applying to M.Div. programs. In 2016, she started Progressive Christian Students, a feminist, LGBTQ+ affirming, and theologically inclusive organization at her university. She also works with Spectrum, Miami University’s main LGBTQ+ organization, and loves playing cello in the university orchestra. This past summer, she interned with the Family Support Services branch of Chicago House, a nonprofit that provides services to populations impacted by HIV/AIDS. In the future, Victoria plans to do asexual-inclusive queer theology and faith-based social justice work. Her goals in life are to build welcoming communities and pursue her values of authenticity, courage, and joy. She envisions a world in which all may be fully known and fully loved.
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Charing Wei-Jen Chen is a Taiwanese doctoral student focusing on the queer interpretation of the Hebrew scripture at the Chicago Theological Seminary. He holds a Master of Divinity from Tainan Theological College and Seminary where he was valedictorian of his class (2014). Charing is also a social reformer in Taiwan where he was a member of the Executive Committee of the Tainan Chapter of the Taiwan Green Party (2015) and spokesperson of the Kaohsiung Pride Parade (2015). He is presently the chief secretary of the first Taiwanese LGBTQ-riendly academic institute, Taiwan Hesed Association. He delivered his first international academic paper “Queer Postcolonial Critiques of LGBT-inclusive Churches in Taiwan” at Queer Asia 2016 Conference (SOAS, University of London). His newest articles concerning postcolonial feminist reading on Rehab and the trickery justice of the oppressed will be collected in Sexual/Being III (Hong Kong, 2018). He has also participated in deaf liberation theology (2016) and ministry (2018) via translation and is now working on the draft of a Taiwanese queer biblical commentary.
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