My dear, old friend, Sara Larsen Begley has been working with Mormon Stories, and sent this to me. It appears that in order to promote this conference, they are turning to GLBTQ-friendly bloggers to weigh in.
So there you go. If you live in SLC and are so inclined, go. If I lived in SLC, I probably would not go. But that’s because these things have a tendency to take on a “I’m a victim of the hateful LDS doctrine machine” tone, and that’s just not really my thing. I have all sorts of things to expound upon, but as I am running late for a YW presidency meeting, I will hold off until another day.
But until then, check this out, and make plans.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Anne Peffer, (617) 489-2913; firstname.lastname@example.org.
“MORMON STORIES” SPONSORS CONFERENCE FOR GAY MORMONS
Salt Lake City, Utah, October 30, 2011.
“Mormon Stories,” (www.mormonstories.org) an organization that seeks to build bridges between all who identify as “Mormon,” announces “Circling the Wagons,” a conference dedicated to the issues of homosexuality within Mormon faith and culture. The conference will be held in Salt Lake City November 4 -6, and will be geared toward all who come from a Mormon background and who self-identify as “same-gender attracted,” gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender, as well as their families, friends and allies. Supporters of other faiths or no faith will be equally welcomed.
Speakers and other participants will include author Carol Lynn Pearson, Brigham Young University professor Bill Bradshaw, Utah State Democratic Party Chair Jim Dabakis, filmmaker Kendall Wilcox, psychologist Lee Beckstead, and John Dehlin.
A featured speaker will be Jimmy Creech, a former United Methodist minister, now retired and living in North Carolina, who has recently published Adam’s Gift: a Memoir of a Pastor’s Calling to Defy the Church’s Persecution of Lesbians and Gays. After a member of his congregation came out to him, Creech concluded that scriptural translations and interpretations concerning homosexuality had been botched and dangerously distorted. As a Christian clergyman, Creech came to believe that discriminating against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people is morally wrong. This understanding compelled him to, among other things, perform same-gender commitment ceremonies, which conflicted with church directives. Creech was tried twice by the United Methodist Church, and, after the second trial, his ordination credentials were revoked. In addition to speaking at the conference, Creech, along with Reverend Mary June Nestler of the Episcopal Diocese of Utah, will speak at a special interfaith service at 11:30 on Sunday, November 6th at the First Baptist Church of Salt Lake City, located at 777 South 1300 East.
The conference will be divided into four sessions. The main portion of the conference will take place on Saturday at the First Baptist Church with registration at 8:00 a.m. and conference beginning at 9 a.m. For information on registration for the conference, see http://mormonstories.org/?p=1962.