Rev. Dr. Cheryl Anderson
Rev. Dr. Cheryl Anderson, Professor of Old Testament at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, will lead a session on Reading the Bible at the Margins: Strategies for Inclusive Biblical Interpretation. Dr. Anderson brings profound insight, experience, and wisdom to the practice of biblical interpretation, in ways that can both reach conservative Christians and center marginalized voices in the interpretative process at the same time.
Rev. Brit Barron
To kick off the conference, the Rev. Brit Barron will equip us with an intersectional framework for how to approach our advocacy work. As a pastor at New Abbey Church in Pasadena and a spiritual director at The Christian Closet, an online counseling practice for LGBTQ Christians, she’s spent the last ten years of her life in ministry, and you can watch her talk, “The Church Needs to Get Bigger,” here.
Dr. James Brownson
Dr. James Brownson, Professor of New Testament at Western Theological Seminary and TRP board member, will be joining theologian Karen Keen and Matthew Vines to lead a session called The Bible and LGBTQ Inclusion: 5 Things You Need to Know. He’ll also lead a Q&A workshop where you can ask this respected scholar and author of Bible, Gender, Sexuality your questions about affirming theology.
Tammye Hicks is a Christian wife, mother, teacher, community advocate, and church leader. She has spent the last thirty one years of her life serving as a teacher (mother) to thousands of children who are considered by society as "at-risk." God has made provisions for her to share her message of unconditional love by being chosen as a hero on the Netflix series "Queer Eye." Tammye (Mama Tammye) currently spends time interacting with fans around the world affirming God's love.
Myles Hicks was born with a heart to serve. After coming out as gay at the age of 14 and continuing throughout the years to come, he became an ambassador of service as he branched out by participating in various leadership and community service organizations, including C5 Youth Foundation of Georgia, Habitat for Humanity, and Books for Africa. Transitioning into adulthood, he put himself first by seeking the assistance of Queer Eye’s Fab Five to help him in realizing his full potential, unapologetically be himself and act as a beacon of light for those in dark places.
Karen Keen is a biblical scholar who earned her Th.M. in biblical studies from Duke University, an M.A. in exegetical theology from Western Seminary, and a certificate in spiritual direction under the auspices of Catholic Sisters Faithful Companions of Jesus (FCJ).Previously a leading thinker and writer in the celibate gay Christian movement, Karen has changed her mind about same-sex relationships and will equip you to talk to non-affirming Christians through her session with Dr. Brownson and Matthew Vines, The Bible and LGBTQ Inclusion: 5 Things You Need to Know.
Rev. Stanley Ramos
On our closing night, the Rev. Stanley Ramos will encourage us as he shares his personal journey and how he started the first affirming Spanish-language church service in Orlando this summer. As Associate Pastor at Joy Metropolitan Community Church and faculty at the University of Central Florida in social work, his ministry focuses on the Latinx LGBTQ community of Central Florida.
In 2013, Matthew Vines founded The Reformation Project in order to help equip and empower Christians to advocate for LGBTQ inclusion in their faith communities. He is also the author of God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships. His session with Karen Keen and Dr. Brownson on The Bible and LGBTQ Inclusion: 5 Things You Need to Know will help you to better understand affirming theology and the biblical case for inclusion.