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April SGF Forum – April 10, 2024

Join us at 6:00 pm, April 10, in the Fellowship Hall for our April Sexuality, Gender, and Faith Forum, Understanding the ABCs: Why Language Matters.In this session, we will hear from Rev. Donnie Anderson and Natalie Aho on the language of LGBTQIA+ and why it matters. Natalie works with the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists and could answer any questions that you may have about their partner churches and their work. Most of our session will be led by Rev. Donnie who will share her personal story as a trans woman and ordained clergy person. 

More about this session: When we originally planned this April session on the language of LGBTQIA+ we invited Natalie and she accepted. Because we believe first hand experiences and personal stories are so important in our understanding of this topic, Natalie recommended that we include Rev. Donnie to see if she would be interested in helping us along the way. Rev. Donnie was so interested, that she made plans to travel here from New England, on her own dime. Pastor Chrissy had a zoom call with Rev. Donnie in March so that they could get to know one another and discuss the details of the session. It was during that zoom call that Chrissy realized how significant this session will be for Greystone. 

Regardless of where our educational journey leads us, this will be the first time that our church has hosted a speaker who identifies as transgender. And yet, we know that our church family is no stranger to transgender identity. Even though we have not discussed openly transgender identity as a congregation, we have already been a church home for and with transgender persons. All of this is to say, this is not an issue we are learning about for the sake of “others,” this is a family conversation to help us better understand, and love more fully people who already are part of our church family. 

One of the things Rev. Donnie said to Pastor Chrissy in their zoom conversation is that no question is off limits. In fact, hearing and responding to questions is at the center of Rev. Donnie’s calling. To that end, we are departing from our normal practice and making time for questions at this forum. Rev. Donnie is honest, open, and quite frank about her experience and her conviction that the church should be a place of welcome, affirmation, and love for all people. That all starts with our language. How we talk about sexuality and gender identity, and how we articulate our welcome. 

So, this will be an evening unlike any other at Greystone. Please invite your friends to come and hear Rev. Donnie’s story. All who are curious, all who are open to learn, all who desire to understand the alphabet are invited and encouraged to attend. 

If you have any questions, please reach out to Pastor Chrissy.

Dinner will be served at 5:30 pm. Please RSVP for dinner by Monday, April 8.