During Advent in December, Adult Education hosted Austen Hartke for a two-part series on “Getting Curious About Gender Diversity.” Hartke is the author of Transforming: The Bible and the Lives of Transgender Christians, a book on theology and personal narratives published by Westminster John Knox Press in 2018. He is also the founder and director of Transmission Ministry Collective, an online community dedicated to the spiritual care, faith formation, and leadership potential of transgender and gender-expansive Christians.
December’s two-part series was dynamic and deeply engaged the audience. Knowing how much we can learn from each other across different generational experiences of gender, participants requested Hartke return for an intergenerational series.
In collaboration with WestConnect and Families, Youth, and Children’s Ministries, Adult Education is happy to present a longer series in May comprised of three sessions on: Unpacking the Gender Clobber Verses, Celebrating Gender Diversity in Scripture, and Trans Allyship for Churches.
Each of the three ministries represented is excited for this opportunity to learn and talk together about this important topic. “In the Westminster youth groups, we work hard to honor and respect one another, recognizing that we all are beloved children of God – no qualifications, no exceptions. As we installed Westminster’s expansive Pride flag outside the church building this past summer, we reflected on questions of identity and allyship. We pledged with our words and our actions to honor one another’s belovedness and support one another in word and deed, especially those among us and in our broader community who self-identify as trans. We continue to learn and grow together, committed to showing up for one another,” says Alexandra Jacob, Associate Pastor for Families, Youth, and Children.
Meghan Gage Finn, Executive Associate Pastor who supports young adult ministries says, “We know that the words we use have value and meaning, especially the words we use as people of faith in Christian community. Being an ally isn’t about having all the right words or the right answers but about creating space across the church through our language and our actions for individuals to feel safe, welcome, and supported. Trans allyship reflects a love that is as inclusive and expansive as God’s love is for everyone.”
We invite anyone and everyone to join us in May.
May 1: Unpacking the Gender Clobber Verses
May 15: Celebrating Gender Diversity in Scripture
May 22: Trans Allyship for Churches
The three sessions will be held at 9:15 am in the Recreation Room.