Faith and gender can intersect in people’s lives in many ways. As gender understandings are evolving broadly throughout society, many faith traditions are evaluating their role in defining and interpreting gender, and many people are navigating their gender identities within their faith traditions. All this month our programs will focus on gender and faith, with a variety of voices, including faith leaders, individuals who have had struggles and joys in their faith communities, young people who are exploring the intersections between their gender and faith, and many others.
Check back to this page often (and follow Gender Spectrum on Facebook and Instagram) as new programs will be added throughout the month. Also, be sure to see our “Topics” page on Gender and Faith and our newly updated Resources on Faith and Gender.
A Conversation with Austen Hartke
Austen Hartke is a Transgender person of faith with a passion for helping other trans and gender-non-conforming people see themselves in scripture. His new book, available on Amazon now and for full release on April 7, is Transforming: The Bible and the Lives of Transgender Christians, Austen is a graduate of Luther Seminary’s Master of Arts program in Old Testament/Hebrew Bible Studies, and is the winner of the 2014 John Milton Prize in Old Testament Writing from the same institution. Watch this engaging conversation between Austen and Gender Spectrum Executive Director Lisa Kenney. Be sure to check out the Trans Faith Resource List on his website.
Tips on Gender, Faith and Parenting
For many religious families of transgender, Non-binary and otherwise Gender-expansive children, it can be complicated to navigate their faith, their religious community, and their child’s gender. Therapist James Matson specializes in helping families with this particular intersection of faith and gender. Hear him offer some helpful advice on parenting around gender and faith.
James Matson, NCC, LPCC is the Clinical Operations Director at iAmClinic. iAmClinic offers counseling for LGBT individuals and couples, as well as their religious loved ones. They are located in Denver, CO, but also provide sessions online via Skype for families around the country.
Other resources include:
Q Christian Fellowship
The Family Acceptance Project (see more, below), especially their resources for Mormon families
J. Mase III on Faith and Gender
J Mase III is a Black/trans/queer educator, performer and poet based in Seattle. Raised by a Christian and a Muslim parent, Mase shares his thoughts and experiences around the intersections of gender, race, faith and much more in this 2-part series. Please consider supporting his GoFundMe page for his forthcoming #BlackTransPrayerBook at www.gofundme.com/black-trans-prayer-book and check out his website www.jmaseiii.com and his organization www.awQwardtalent.com.
Young People on Gender and Faith
Our Youth Council members made this thoughtful video to discuss ways that gender and faith intersect in their lives. Elliot, Tom and Jude all have strong feelings on faith, and great advice for other young people who are navigating gender in any faith tradition.
The Family Acceptance Project
The groundbreaking Family Acceptance Project (FAP) has conducted research and developed interventions working with diverse families, including socially and religiously conservative families who may believe gender diversity and LGBQT identities are counter to deeply held values and beliefs. Read more about the project and find links to their resources on our blog.
One Mom’s Faith Journey
Our Director of Family Services Pam Wool recently spoke with a Mom who faced a clash between her Evangelical faith community and her transgender child. You can hear her story on our Soundcloud page and find resources for families struggling with gender and faith on our blog.
Inclusive Practices Among Faith Leaders
More and more faith leaders from across the country and of various traditions are bringing gender-inclusion to their communities. Below are just a few examples:
Read Reverend Tynan Power’s Washington Post article, “As a trans Muslim, I used to feel vulnerable all the time.”
Read the Huffington Post article “Evangelical Christians On a Faith Journey to Supporting LGBTQ Equality” by Reverend Dr. David W. Key, Sr. of the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists.
Coming soon we will post new programs featuring more stories and interviews on gender and faith. Bookmark this page to catch them all!