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LGBTQ Ministry

Fostering full participation for all in local congregations


What’s Love got to do with it?  To extend the Good News to all humanity, the answer is, “Everything!”

Affirming LGBTQ ministry is one of the most pressing challenges, and greatest opportunities, for the Christian faith and church growth today. In this seminar, you’ll learn from pioneers and the next generation of LGBTQ leaders about how to start and deepen affirming ministry and inclusion in your own context.  Join the quest to share the Good News.  Be on the growing edge of ministry.


Rev. Dr. Janie Spahr

Pioneer for LGBTQ inclusion
in the Presbyterian Church

Dr. Michael Adee

Educator, activist, Director of the
Global Faith and Justice Project

Rev. Dr. Erin Swenson

Licensed Psychotherapist and
an ordained Transgender Presbyterian Minister

Rev. Annanda Barclay

Co-Moderator of More Light,
Associate Pastor of First Pres Palo Alto

Rev. Brandan Robertson

Writer, activist, pastor at
Mission Gathering San Diego

Bishop Karen P. Oliveto

Bishop of the UMC for the Mountain Sky
Episcopal Area, activist, and pioneer



The structure for this interactive online seminar, occuring consecutive Wednesdays at 4:00p PST, is informed and inspired by this Great Commandment text with its call to create loving and affirming community. Surely the commitment and creation of affirming faith communities inspires church growth in every possible way.

Session 1 (1/10/18) – Paths toward LGBTQ ministry with Janie Spahr, Floyd Thompkins, and special guest instructor Karen P. Oliveto

Session 2 (1/17/18) – Love of God: Biblical and Theological Imperatives for Inclusion with Brandan Robertson

Session 3 (1/24/18) – Love of Neighbor: Ethical and Social Justice Imperatives for Inclusion with Michael Adee

Session 4 (1/31/18) – Love of Self: Pastoral and Self Care Imperatives for Inclusion with Annanda Barclay

Session 5 (2/07/18) – Love Beyond the Gender Binary: Pastoral Care for Transgender People with Erin Swenson

Session 6 (2/14/18) – Community Project: Moving Forward in Your Context

In the final session, each participant designs and implements a grassroots project focused upon affirming LGBTQ ministry in a context of one’s own choosing. Seminar faculty will serve as guides to accompany each participant with their community project.

Projects are eligible for $2000 Wisdom Grants that will support your local efforts. Recipients of Wisdom Grants will also travel to campus to present at the Center’s annual Wisdom Conference.


This course is designed for anyone who wants to work on LGBTQ ministry in any religious community setting. Each participant will benefit in direct ways from the wisdom and experience of others in the community concerning starting and sustaining healthy change.

  • To establish a cohort of people who are leaders of faith communities that are interested in advancing issues of inclusion in their specific communities
  • To explore the literature, both theoretical and practical, concerning the issues and challenges of engaging, changing and challenging a community in ways that end in a healthy and inclusive community for all
  • To expose the participants to the pioneers of some of the more successful approaches to community change
  • To have the members of the cohort support, challenge and clarify at least one effort that is attempted during the scope of the evaluation

Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are available to Pastors, Pastor Counselor, Nurses, and Chaplains whose certifying agencies or organizations require CE hours. To determine whether or not your seminar qualifies for CEUs, please consult with your agency.


Online using Zoom