SDA Kinship News

JOIN SDA KINSHIP AT LONG BEACH PRIDE PARADE!

JOIN SDA KINSHIP AT LONG BEACH PRIDE PARADE!
LONG BEACH PRIDE IS ONE OF THE LARGEST PRIDE EVENTS IN THE COUNTRY.

We know that there are many people with a Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) connection who are part of the LGBT+ community, are LGBT+ affirming, and support equality on all facets of life.

Our goal is to be very visible to our Adventist communities. We want to demonstrate to all that the Adventist community is diverse and that we support each other regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity.

We are hopeful this will be the largest public demonstration of love, acceptance, and affirmation of all LGBT+ people with an Adventist connection. We encourage all attendees to wear or display Pride symbols/flags and clothing that proudly links you to an Adventist community like an Adventist university, church, or linked organization like disaster relief groups, veggie foods—whatever screams.

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GIVE OUT DAY

GIVE OUT DAY
This Year, We’d Like to Do This1East-Central Africa Division (Kenya and Uganda, specifically) are open to receiving education on HIV/AIDS and learning about what it means to be an LGBTQ Adventist. Funds are needed to organize these meetings with the local pastors and Seventh-day Adventist conference officials to provide these resources.2An easily accessible online self-study program designed for pastors, teachers, and church leaders to help them understand what it means to be LGBTQ and to create a safe environment for those who identify as such. This program would contain several modules, including stories, videos, presentations, etc. to cover the various aspects of being an LGBTQIA Adventist.But, Not Without Your Help

So, we’re calling on you to step up, dig deep, and pitch in whatever you can to help us share our journeys and reach out to those who need to be educated on what it truly means to be LGBTIQ and Adventist, and those who need to know they are not alone.

Can we count on you? Please consider supporting our continued efforts on April 19 by making a donation at sdakinship.org/give

Journey - Chapter 17

Journey - Chapter 17
First Visit with Colin 

BY JERRY MCKAY

Once I named my experience—acknowledged my homosexual orientation—a predictable side effect emerged. I found myself wanting to meet others with a similar experience. The only way I knew of doing that was through an ad on the back page of The Japan Times.

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Kinship Kampmeeting 2018

Kinship Kampmeeting 2018

Kinship Kampmeeting 2018 is July 11-14 and our Women & Children First Retreat is July 6-11 in Baltimore, Maryland, United States!

Kampmeeting takes place at the Homewood Suites at BWI and our Women & Children First Retreat takes place July 6-11 at a place near downtown Baltimore, Maryland, United States.

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Design Work on New SDA Kinship Logo Starts

Design Work on New SDA Kinship Logo Starts
 

In October of 2017, SDA Kinship initiated the process to create a new logo. This is part of a greater SDA Kinship brand enhancement effort as work towards increasing appeal to current constituents, and expanding the organization’s reach, membership, and visibility continues.

The world and the way people interact with brands has changed a lot since the existing logo was created more than a decade ago. “With the current proliferation of social media in mind, my goal is that we match or even exceed current trends on the world wide web,” Clinton Sorzano, Kinship’s Director of Communications, confirmed.

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European Kinship Meeting

European Kinship Meeting
September 6-10 in Vienna

SDA Kinship’s annual European Kinship Meeting (EKM) takes place September 6-10 in Vienna, Austria, a city famous for its cultural events, imperial sights, coffee houses, cozy wine taverns, and the very special Viennese charm.

The location for EKM is Don Bosco Haus, a Center of Continuing Education that has comfortable places to sleep, food for vegetarians and meat eaters, a very nice meeting room for our gatherings, and very calm surroundings.

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MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT

When I think about what you might want to hear about each month, I think about the events Kinship leaders have organized, the updated website, the projects that are important for our mission and the amazing things happening in Africa and elsewhere around the world where Kinship members are making a difference for our community. I also want to share things that offer support and encouragement.

What’s on my mind at this moment is our annual Kinship elections. Each year, we search for members who feel a desire or call to contribute to Kinship by running for one of the open positions.

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Out Spoken

Out Spoken

Join SDA Kinship

Join SDA Kinship

You can join Kinship’s Online Community today!

Membership is free and all your information is kept confidential.

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Support the Mission of SDA Kinship

Support the Mission of SDA Kinship

COLOMBIA

COLOMBIA
COLOMBIA XXI Pride Parade

Representatives from SDA Kinship Columbia joined thousands who marched in the XXI Pride Parade in Bogota, Colombia last summer.The theme for the day was "EstadoLaico,Seres Libres" (Secular State, Free Humanity,) with organizers calling for a greater separation of church and state.

 

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ADVICE COLUMN

ADVICE COLUMN
Question:I badly want a lover, but despite repeated attempts, I can't seem to make a special relationship work for long. Why do LGBT relationships appear to often meet with early death?Answer:Many LGBT relationships do last, often for a lifetime. Those couples who endure often maintain a low profile, even in relation to the gay community. Because we seldom see or hear from them, we mistakenly assume they do not exist.

Of course, many of our relationships end more quickly. But I would remind you that the heterosexual record is not especially to be envied. One in three marriages terminates in divorce. Many heterosexual couples break engagements and "steady" arrangements. My point is simply that we should not be more critical of gay relationships than a factual comparison with heterosexuals warrants.

Gay couples separate for the same reasons that heterosexual couples break up. Perhaps the choice of a partner was inappropriate in the first place. One or both people may have been too immature or insecure to maintain the level of mutual responsibility and commitment that a relationship requires.

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Church Relations

Church Relations

The annual LGBT TaskForce Creating Change Conference was held in Washington, DC from January 24 to 28. It is the largest gathering of our community in the United States each year.

Approximately 4,000 were in attendance, including both members of the LGBT community and many allies from dozens of organizations. For the second year, a Spiritual Care time had a room available for those who wanted to have a chance to visit. The team, including Church Relations Director, Dave Ferguson, was available throughout the conference. The definition of spiritual care included both traditional religious groups, nativist groups, non-Abrahamic faiths, and those no longer professing a religious affiliation.

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DON’T GIVE UP

DON’T GIVE UP

ABSTINENCE WITH SUPPORT —Dr. Richard Hamilton

Personal behavior occurring day after day usually fills a need. Being finite, our life on earth requires planning the use of our energy wisely. An underlying theme is the development of our love for God and all that He represents.

This includes love for ourselves socially, physically, and spiritually. Achieving and maintaining a strong relationship to this highly personal goal is a lifelong investment. God's infinite wisdom and love has given each of us access to the open road of life. Each day we make decisions about our lives and develop a wise expression of our love towards Him. Substance abuse in any form does not allow for optimal expression of love toward God.

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STAND UP - STAND PROUD

STAND UP - STAND PROUD

Leadership Team Host Live Facebook Chat

Leadership Team Host Live Facebook Chat

At the conclusion of their annual Spring Board Meeting, SDA Kinship’s leadership team hosted a Facebook Live chat with members.

In what ways does SDA Kinship plan to move from a support group for LGBT Adventists to create change in the denomination? I would like to know what efforts are being done to reach people in the closet in our churches? What is the theme of KM (Kampmeeting?)

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Journey - Chapter 16

Journey - Chapter 16

Journey - Chapter 16

The Day After - Part II

by Jerry McKay

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KINSHIP WELCOMES NEW FAMILY & FRIENDS COORDINATORS

KINSHIP WELCOMES NEW FAMILY & FRIENDS COORDINATORS

At Kinship’s 38th annual Kampmeeting, John and Carolyn Wilt were introduced as the new Family and Friends Coordinators.

John and Carolyn are practicing Seventh-day Adventists, having been married for 57 years. They have three children, including a gay son, the late Aric Wilt, who unexpectedly passed away at the age of 49. 

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SEVENTH-GAY ADVENTISTS TRANSLATED TO MANDARIN

SEVENTH-GAY ADVENTISTS TRANSLATED TO MANDARIN

On a Sabbath evening in June, Rey Lee hosted a screening of the film Seventh-Gay Adventists (SGA) at Mu-En Church in Shanghai, China. Seventh-Gay Adventists, produced by Stephen Eyer and Daneen Akers, explores the stories of LGBTIQ Seventh-day Adventists. Rey who lives in Shanghai, China, had previously met the Akers when he traveled to California, United States in 2016.

While in California, the Akers happened to be hosting a screening of another film at the Glendale City Adventist Church. It is then Rey, who teaches English in China, offered to translate SGA into Mandarin. The process took eight months to complete.

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Outspoken Film Series Features LGBTIQ Adventists

Outspoken Film Series Features LGBTIQ Adventists

The “Outspoken” film series is a collection of short documentary profiles featuring LGBTQ Adventists (most current but some no longer identifying as Adventist) and Adventist parents of LGBTQ children. These short films are being released online the first Friday night of the month in 2017, and the first six have gotten an incredible response. We felt like it was the right time to have short profiles available easily through social media to help share these stories more widely.

The “Outspoken” short film released in July, features Camilo Nazar (http://www.watchfirefilms.com/outspoken), a senior film student at Pacific Union College who also was the president of their unofficial GSA last year and is the new president for the IAGC (Intercollegiate Adventist GSA Coalition). He’s passionate about better media and film representation for queer people of color like himself, and he also makes a powerful argument for why these campus GSAs need to be official.

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Just Love

Just Love

As I was writing this I was reflecting on Cher's song ‘Believe.’ Sometimes it's hard to believe in the love the song talks about.  We see people in the highest power in government say very hurtful things to our Trans and non-binary brothers and sisters, especially to the 15,000 plus transgender people who are currently serving in the U.S. military and the 134,000 plus who are veterans.  

As someone who is navigating what their gender identity is, my heart goes out to each one of you. I send you all a big Canadian hug. As a summer intern at Oakridge  Adventist Church in Vancouver,  British Columbia I have started a summer Sabbath school ministry called On Top Of The World. Our theme is to Love Others Well, Love Yourself Well, Love God Well. 

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ADVICE FROM A FORMER ADVENTIST PASTOR

ADVICE FROM A FORMER ADVENTIST PASTOR

Last April I went from a closeted Adventist pastor to an out bisexual Adventist ex-pastor in the most intense way possible. I certainly didn't have any concept that my coming out video would be viewed 50,000 times in the first month, or that it would be picked up on national news. I don't think I was ready for the intensity of the situation, the people who would turn to me in gratitude, confusion, and anger, and the weight of knowing the suffering of closet LGBTIQ people in the Adventist church.

One thing I was ready for is being completely and totally out. Doing the whole thing in one fell swoop was the best thing for me personally. I was ready to be able to be honest about who I am, speak my convictions, and do work I believe in. The stress of living in dishonesty was greater than I had realized. The relief of settling into a life of integrity was more powerful and life-giving than I could have guessed.

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ON BECOMING A PEBBLE: THE NAME GOD GAVE SIMON

ON BECOMING A PEBBLE: THE NAME GOD GAVE SIMON

By Catherine Taylor

As far as I can tell, it happened only six times in the Bible. For God to personally name a mortal is a rare and significant event. In the Hebrew culture, names of children were usually indicative of either the time in history when they were born or wishes for the development of their character. Later, the use of family names became more common. When God chose to give a particular name to someone, it seems to have been a response to a specific event or issue in his life as well as an object lesson for the rest of us.

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BUDAPEST AND BEYOND

BUDAPEST AND BEYOND

By Dave Ferguson

Recently, the church held a world congress in Budapest for Children’s Women’s and Family Ministries.  The topic of homosexuality was only covered in the Family Ministries break-out sessions.  The keynote speaker for this was Eckerhardt Mueller from the Biblical Research Institute of the General Conference.  He had previously presented his views at the conference on homosexuality at Andrews University in 2009 and is said to be the main author of the recent Transgender position paper.  While no one from Kinship was invited to this congress, we were able to get information from an ally who was in attendance.  As one would expect from the person making the presentation, this was not a meeting that provided much hope for our community.  One would wonder if the location was chosen because of the very fundamental approach to Scripture from that area of Europe. 

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Journey - Chapter 15

Journey - Chapter 15

Journey - Chapter 15

The Year of Before and After - Part II

It was midnight when I finished reading the Ministry interview and headed home. The familiar residential streets of Tokyo seemed different that night. My trance-like walk home was broken once by a brief exchange with a passing policeman whom I knew. I remember this odd detail because his greeting jolted me back into the present.

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MY NAME IS MATTHEW

MY NAME IS MATTHEW

My name is Matthew, and I am a grade 12 student at Kingsway College, a Seventh-day Adventist high school in Oshawa, Ontario. I am 18 years old.

To some, I have a strange and somewhat obsessive love of Narnia and all things medieval. I grew up in the Adventist Church and consider myself a faithful Christian. I am also gay. But, to me, that is only one of the many things that I am. Besides Narnia, I love Lord of the Rings and all that fantasy medieval stuff. My life goal is to have a castle of my own one day. I have plans for that.

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WHY I VOLUNTEER MY TIME FOR SDA KINSHIP

WHY I VOLUNTEER MY TIME FOR SDA KINSHIP

People who know me and my history with the Adventist Church, or those who hear what is still going on in the local churches often ask me: Why are you involved with SDA Kinship? Why are you still a member of a church that is obviously not interested in YOU?

And to be honest, I wonder that as well from time to time. It does cost me time and often it costs my nerves. It costs patience and sometimes also money. Sometimes the work with Kinship can be very frustrating. At those times I need to remind myself:

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MEMBERSHIP

MEMBERSHIP

It is important for any organization to know and understand the needs of its members, and SDA Kinship's greatest asset is our members. To help gather current data, the Kinship Board created a survey that was sent out to all members with email addresses to find out what challenges our members are facing and what direction the Board needs to move the organization in. 

The survey was sent in English, Spanish, Portuguese and German to 2586 members and we received about 260 responses. The following are some data from each question.

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FEED MY SHEEP

FEED MY SHEEP

Why did Jesus ask Peter three times, "Do you love me?" It has been said that Peter denied Jesus three times; and, therefore, Jesus made Peter claim his love for Him three times. The three questions seem to be the same; however, in Greek, they are different.

Jesus calls him, "Simon, son of Jonah," his old name. Previously, Jesus had changed his name to Cephas, meaning "rock-man" in Aramaic; and in Greek, petro; in English, Peter. In these three questions Jesus uses his old name, “Simon, son of Jonah,” reminding Peter that he had not acted as a "rock-man" when he had denied Jesus a couple of nights earlier. However, Jesus did not do this to embarrass Peter but to remind him of his weakness and need of the Lord to make him a "rock-man."

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