Breakout D:

SATURDAY, JANUARY 12TH 3:00PM - 4:00PM


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Let’s Get in Spiritual Formation: Spiritual Practices According to Lemonade

Session leader: GRAYSON HESTER

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: MICHIGAN 1A

Session Description: First, resistance. Then, reclamation. Last, restoration. Too often, spiritual practices are viewed as secondary or separate, given how they’ve been sold to many of us by evangelical Christianity. Framing it solely as “quiet time” or “devotional time” suggests spiritual formation is something done apart from one’s regular life, as if to divide someone into their “real self” and their “spiritual self.” It’s no surprise that some within this ex/post-evangelical world have abandoned spiritual practices altogether. Under the monikers of “Resistance,” “Reclamation,” and “Restoration,” and using Beyonce’s album Lemonade as a framework, we’ll explore how spiritual formation can not only be incorporated into one’s daily life, but, indeed, be integral to it. Included in this workshop will be methods of spiritual practice, traditional and unorthodox alike, that can help LGBTQ+ people create within their own bodies the inclusive spaces they seek to make in their world.

Biography: Grayson Hester (he/him/his) is a first-year Master of Divinity student at the McAfee School of Theology in Atlanta. This marks his third year attending QCF and his first presenting. He has absolutely no idea what he wants to do with his life, but, as long as there is dancing, horrible puns, and good friends involved, it should all end up okay.


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Realities, challenges & advancements of LGBTI affirming Christian’s initiatives in Central America

Session Leader: Carla Sofía Vargas Sandoval

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: RANDOLPH 1

Session Description: Learn how LGBTIQ Christian inclusive efforts in the United States affect Central American realities; the importance and shared Christian responsibility of witnessing the radically inclusive Gospel of Jesus in the developing countries, and the importance of networking and companion relationships for the development of a fully welcoming and affirming global Church.

Biography: Carla Sofía Vargas Sandoval, born and raised in Nicaragua but currently applying for political asylum in Argentina, has created an initiative that seeks to start conversations and spaces towards LGBTIQ inclusion in Central America's Christian churches. According to the IACHR, Central America has one of the highest rates of hate crimes against LGBTIQ people in the world, so under her alias La Mechuda, Carla Sofía creates content & LGBTIQ resources in Spanish and has started the group J4 - an online community (for now, due to Nicaragua's socio-political situation) of LGBTIQ Christians in her country.


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The Image of God - Diversity in Creation

Session Leader: Ceri Anne Lewis

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: COLUMBUS G/H

Session Description: This session is a look at diversity through the image of God, and how that is reflected through creation and pertains particularly to LGBT people

Biography: Ceri Anne is a Transgender Christian Woman who grew up in an evangelical family. She is currently a member of United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City, MO, and speaks and teaches on LGBT issues there. She is a Leadership Cohort Graduate of The Reformation Project, and has spoken at Women Connect at Q Christian Fellowship, Gender Odyssey, The Reformation Project, Garrett Theological Seminary, PFLAG, GLSEN and various churches.


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Lament, Healing, Liberation and the Contemplative

Session Leader: AnaYelsi R. Velasco-Sanchez

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: MICHIGAN 2


Session Description: Our love undivided can make a difference but in order to remain undivided we must pursue wholeness and healthiness. In this breakout we will explore the relationship between movement work, spirituality, and contemplation. How has our personal and ancestral story shaped our ability to tend to our individual and collective well-being in the midst of pursuing justice? This breakout will ask participants to explore how lament and hope functions in their race/ethnicity/culture and the ways in which that converges or diverges from dominant culture. They will be invited to guide one another through the practices that help ground them in this work and promote healing and a spirit of liberation.

Biography: Born in Venezuela, AnaYelsi Velasco-Sanchez is an IndoLatinx mujerista working to create and agitate her way through the Latin diaspora. Having worked as a faith-based community organizer for a decade, AnaYelsi is now a consultant, educator, writer, and visual artist. She provides education and consultation in both sacred and secular spaces - helping people to pursue justice in an intersectional and holistic way. Her column, Brown Eyed Amazon, can be found at Patheos’ Progressive Christian channel and she is the co-host for the upcoming Mystic Soul podcast with Teresa P. Mateus.

She loves disappearing for hours in an art museum, feeding people a homemade flan of which she is unabashedly proud, reading everything she can get her hands on, and watching an absurd number of problematic made-for-tv holiday romcoms.

AnaYelsi lives in Washington, D.C. You can follow her on twitter at @brwneyedamzn.


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Side by Side: Affirming the Unique Perspective of Bi+ Persons

Session Leader: Jonathan drummond

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: COLUMBUS I/J

Session Description: In order to promote unity within our community, we must appreciate and embrace our complex diversity while we truly see each person as a beloved child of God. Binary structures exclude those of us who do not fit neatly into boxes at the two extremes of a continuum. People who come out as gay or lesbian have the ability to easily find others in public to validate their own personal experience, whereas bi+ persons encounters a much smaller identifiable “outed” group with whom to ally. This workshop will allow bi+ people and their allies to find their unique voices, hopefully shedding light on this often-overlooked segment of our family. This session is designed for members and non-members of the Bi+ community to join in dialogue so that we can Love Undivided! All are welcome.

Biography: Jonathan Drummond is the single father of two adult daughters. Active in teaching ministries for two decades, Jonathan is now is a second year MDiv student at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver. After witnessing the public shaming of his brother for being gay in college, he chose to not act on his bisexuality. After a 23-year relationship with his former wife and five years of singleness, Jonathan decided to come out to his family as bisexual and is an advocate for the full inclusion of LGBTQ within the church.


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Undivided Across the Spectrum: A Panel Discussion Featuring Radically Diverse Perspectives on Sexual Ethics

Session Leaders:

sam locke, bukola landis-aina and isaac archuleta

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: COLUMBUS K/L

Session Descriptions: Q Christian Fellowship is a haven providing safety for one’s spiritual journey no matter the final theological position one chooses. The Executive Leadership Team (ELT) is hosting a panel to highlight and discuss the diversity of sexual ethics we find within our community, as well as how the Board-driven centered set values and sexual ethics allow Q Christian Fellowship to remain a safe haven for all. Like a spiritual and relational estuary teeming with diverse forms of life, this panel will include a variety of perspectives from diverse persons all along the spectrum of sexual ethics: from asexuality to Waiting until Marriage (WUM) to polyamory. We welcome you to the table, one at which we are all welcome to learn and commune, while modeling healthy discourse and Love Undivided.

Biographies: Learn more about Sam, Bukola, and Isaac


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Loving Yourself as a Single Individual in the LGBTQIA+ Community

Session Leader: scott litwiller

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: MICHIGAN 3

Session Description: This will be a time of storytelling, bible study, and visioning for the future of the Church through the lens of singleness. While this session is geared toward "single" individuals, singleness touches all of us in a variety of ways; whether you are yet unpartnered, widowed, divorced, or partnered while also being an individual, you are welcome at this session. Join us as we journey together and discuss what it means to be single individuals in the LGBTQIA+ community, in the church, and in the world.

Biography: Scott was born in rural central Illinois and is currently pursuing a Master of Divinity at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary in northern Indiana. Scott's Anabaptist upbringing and education have deeply shaped him to seek and work for peace and justice in all aspects of life and faith. When not studying theology, Scott enjoys long walks, deep conversations, and binge watching trashy TV shows.


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Side A Children Loving Their Side B Parents

Session Leaders: dr. samuel ramsey and bridget handkins

Time: SATURDAY, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
Room: RANDOLPH 3

Session Description: We've all heard the phrase, "Those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter." It's time we rethink our acceptance of the idea that people critical of our identity must be doing so out of a lack of love and are therefore expendable. Some of the most disapproving people can be the ones that love us the most. Unfortunately, popular rhetoric surrounding this subject doesn't leave us equipped to walk through that reality.

Biographies: Dr. Samuel Ramsey and Bridget Handkins are gay (Side-A) children of ministers who very vocally align Side-B. Upon coming out, that simple idea "if they love me, they'll accept me for who I am" just didn’t hold up. This session will create an interactive space for parents and the children of parents who don't agree with their sexual or gender identity to ask questions, seek advice, and work through preserving depth in what is often the most important relationship in their lives. Our goal: To see God glorified in a relational unity perplexing in its stability.

Bridget Handkins is a drama department director and educator at a large high school in Cincinnati. She loves watching her students pour our their hearts daily in their work, finding pride in their successes and meaning in their mistakes. One of her goals is reaching a larger audience through challenging theatrical performances, meant to pry truth and action from the hiding places in the community. Walking with God in a public school brings many challenges, but the reward is abundant. This is her third year at conference, and her third year blessed to give her heart to God with the worship team.


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