I will be heading to Newberg, OR March 14th on behalf of George Fox University students and alumni. As is often the case with faith based universities, the current policy of George Fox University prohibits any LGBT faith conversation on campus that does not directly endorse celibacy. It is for this reason that it is important to note that the recently formed OneGeorgeFox have worked diligently to bring Inside Out Faith and Gay Christian Network to Newberg and will be hosted off-campus. (Check out the SCHEDULE page for details.)
There are varying degrees to which on-campus students find they are able to publicly express their need for support and extreme cases where there is no possibility of doing so without censure. The impetus in the formation of this student, alumni, LGBT and ally organization is just one of many that are popping up around the country. Where on-campus dialogue is unlikely, or even prohibited, alumni involvement can offer a ray of hope to those seemingly lost in a world that speaks with only one voice. For more examples, check out the sister inspiration of 1GF, OneWheaton, for what hopes to be a growing trend of institutionally specific alumni support.
Please make certain you stop by the OneGeorgeFox alumni page for some well-written perspectives on LGBT faith inclusion. From both LGBT and allied voices, you will find a wide range of personalities and experiences that I am certain you will find helpful.
As always, I’d like to encourage you to not be a stranger. It takes a lot of strength and endurance to do what some of these folks are doing, and sometimes the local resources can only go so far. So send them an email, a Facebook page, or a Twitter let them know the power of their resounding echo!