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Imago Gei

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IMAGO GEI is a new podcast that will feature relevant topics for the SDA Kinship community. Kendra Arsenaux is a member of SDA Kinship and is an experienced Adventist podcaster. Most recently she podcasted for "Advent Next" exploring hot topics in the SDA church. 

Spectrum and SDA Kinship have partnered and contracted to bring you weekly IMAGO GEI podcasts for the next year. IMAGO GEI is a play on words of the term IMAGO DEI, illustrating that everyone, including "gays" are made in the image of God. The first podcast is expected to be released on February 4. Check your favorite podcast platform for IMAGO GEI and be sure to subscribe to it in order not to miss any episodes.

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Imago Gei | Queer Faith. Colorful God.

Imago Gei is a play on the term Imago Dei, which means made in the Image of God. Imago Gay is a gay podcast production affirming that we are all deserving of dignity. Gay church anyone? Spectrum Magazine, SDA Kinship along with Kendra Arsenault M.Div. have come together to bring you the latest on queer theology and a minority perspective on faith. Imago Gay is the affirmation of our humanity and shared value in the eyes of God. This dignity and affirmation of human value, which is the birthright of every living and breathing human being is one that is often forgotten when affirming the dignity of LGBTQ lives. LGBTQ youth are four times as likely to commit suicide. LGBTQ youth also make up 40% of the homeless youth in America. Unfortunately, much of their suicidality and housing insecurity is caused by bad theology. Whether it’s parents who kick their children out of the home for coming out, or the depression that comes with believing that being queer means there is no future possibility of love, family and happiness and you’ve once dreamed. Bad theology is one that does not treat the other as Imago Dei, made in the image of God. So as a statement both to ourselves and to others, Imago Gei is a podcast that affirms that we are all made in the image of God, even the gays….
  • Healing From Religious Trauma (Dr. Dee Knight)
    12 May 2022
    In this episode of Imago Gei, we discuss healing from religious trauma with Dr. Dee Knight, a clinical psychologist. The road to healing is a journey we are all invited to take, and none of us have to take it alone.
  • Landslides | (Journey pt. 2)
    28 April 2022
    My relationship with God and my relationship with the Church has often been a very different relationship. In part two of "Journey to Affirming Theology," I discuss particular junctures at which my experience and my beliefs were incongruent, and what happens at the crossroads. As someone who has grown up with an understanding of the church as a vehicle for humanitarian efforts--feeding the homeless, healing the sick, and helping the vulnerable among us--the gospel and social justice have often been inextricably linked. But what happens when the questions of ethics are at crossroads with institutional idealisms? How can we begin to allow the questions of ethics to inform how we practice a faith that performs practical good in the world?
  • The Power of Personal Story and Counternarrative in a Reflective Theology
    21 April 2022
    On this LGBTQ Podcast, Dr. Melodie Roschman discusses her dissertation, "Identity, Counternarrative, and Community in Progressive Christian Women's Memoir," with Kendra Arsenault on this episode of Imago Gei, affirming Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Queer identities in religious spaces. When we think about testimony in Scripture, eye-witness accounts, what a person heard or saw, life stories like Ruth and Esther, the testimony of John in Revelation, or the visions of Isaiah and Daniel, personal experience with the world and with God matter. So what is the place of personal story and memoir when building a reflective theology? How do we include the proverbial Yelp Review of certain Christian disciplines or traditions and use it to inform our present beliefs and practices? What’s the role of feedback and should it be taken into consideration when building a belief about God?
  • Journey to LGBTQ Affirming PT. 1
    14 April 2022
    The journey to becoming LGBTQ affirming in a religious setting or church environment is dependent on more than simple Bible knowledge or good exegesis. LGBTQ affirming is a position people come to based on a theology that takes holistic consideration of what is ethical, good, and just. At a minimum, LGBTQ affirming is to exercise the reflexive practice of asking how a particular theological construct advantages or disadvantages people, especially marginalized people. The experiences for queer, trans, gay, and lesbian members under the religious constructs of the church are the nerve endings that, in a healthy body, signal to the brain vital feedback necessary to keep the body from harm.
  • Lesbians, Leviticus & Eunuchs, Oh My!
    07 April 2022
    Professor Matthew Korpman and Kendra Arsenault finish out this queer theology series on Imago Gay by discussing the absence of women in the Levitical laws against homosexuality, the broad category of sexually divergent people that Eunuchs encompass and a more inclusive theology that holds an all-embracing view of LGBTQ people in the history of faith. "I am so sick and tired of people saying that Leviticus 18 and 22 or 20:13 have to do with homosexuality because homosexuality has a definition. It is a sexual orientation that has to involve both sexes, and it has to involve much more than sex, a whole orientation, a whole sensibility. You can be homosexual and never actually have sex."
  • Trans-Woman | Struggle and Triumph
    31 March 2022
    On this episode of Imago Gei, Randi Robertson discusses her journey as a trans woman married to her college sweetheart and working as an Air Force pilot for 22 years as well as an instructor for a Christian university. As we end Women's Month, we are going out with thoughtful consideration over gender and the implications of being a woman or trans woman both in the church and in society.
  • I'm Triggered! Big Feelings on LGBTQ Matters
    24 March 2022
    "What do I do with the mad that I feel when I feel so mad I could bite!" Mr. Rogers shared this piece of therapeutic children's music at Congress back in 1969. Today, we are still learning how to manage emotions, especially regarding the church and LGBTQ matters. So why are we all so TRIGGERED? Spiritual Care Provider Roxan and Kendra Arsenault M.Div. dive into the world of feelings, theology, and LGBTQ identities to explore what about gayness makes us so mad, scared, and grieved. We also discuss how we can all do a little better at honoring our feelings. Word of the week is Spiritual Bypassing. How have our favorite religious shortcuts, "God is good," "God would never give me more than I can handle," "In this life, we are meant to suffer to receive a heavenly reward," turned into a way of circumventing the difficult task of dealing with our humanity? Turns out, we might not be that spiritual, after all. Pastoral care for LGBTQ church members is essential. So this week, we provide practical training for pastors, elders, and spiritual leaders to help them understand and better care for the LGBTQ community.
  • An Unchanged Ministry
    17 March 2022
    In 1987 the Seventh-day Adventist church sued SDA Kinship International claiming trademark infringement for using the name "SDA". The lawsuit has had ripple effects throughout the LGBTQ community and their continued relationship with the church. After participating in a grueling trial, many left the institution never to return. Others saw this victory as a landmark that one's religious identity does not exist with the institution, but with people. On this episode I talk with Floyd Poenitz, president of SDA Kinship International regarding the history of SDA Kinship and what more we still have to learn from affirming LGBTQ lives.
  • King David Bisexual? Sodom and Gomorrah Gay?
    10 March 2022
    Was David bisexual? Is Sodom and Gomorrah really a reference to homosexuality or something else? On this episode of Imago Gei, Kendra Arsenault talks with Matthew Korpman about his book Saying No to God and the insights he shares in his chapter "Saying No to Homophobia." There has often been controversy in the Christian community regarding whether or not Jonathan and David shared more than a strictly platonic relationship. So what would it mean if David really was bisexual? Would that change our perception of this Biblical icon? We also discuss the often referred to example of Sodom and Gomorrah, which has often is a story often leveraged against the LGBTQ community. So is Sodom and Gomorrah really a cautionary tale towards the LGBTQ community or is there another possible reading of the text?
  • LGBTQ Discrimination and Title IX
    03 March 2022
    Civil rights attorney Amanda Ghannam and Kendra Arsenault discuss why LGBTQ Discrimination at religious institutions is legal unfortunately. Prosecution of LGBTQ discrimination cases in religious settings is so difficult due to First Amendment complications. So what is the history of LGBTQ legislation and what is the possibility for legislative change in the future?
  • Saying No to Homophobia | Matthew Korpman
    24 February 2022
    Imago Gei is an affirmation of dignity for LGBTQ members, a declaration that we too are imago dei, or made in the image of God. On this episode, Kendra Arsenault interviews Matthew Korpman who is critical of the church's relationship towards LGBTQ members and makes a Biblical argument against prejudice. Discussing his book, "Saying No To God", this episode is focused on his chapter "Saying No To Homophobia." The theological emphasis of this week's episode brings insights into queer theology and builds a framework for discussing LGBTQ lives with a dignified theological perspective.
  • Transcendence | The Story of Ari Bates
    17 February 2022
    This week on Imago Gei, Kendra Arsenault interviews Ari Bates, a transgender woman currently studying and employed at Southern Adventist University. After publicly coming out as transgender, she was made aware of a new policy that will be implemented on Southern's campus requiring transgender students to dress according to their gender assigned at birth. After coming out, she was placed on administrative leave. So today, we hear her story and her experience as a transgender woman, daughter and student.
  • The LGBTQ Experience
    10 February 2022
    On this episode of Imago Gei, a multitude of LGBTQ voices share their stories of struggle, triumph and faith, along with their complicated relationship with the church. Understanding queer theology is more than just closing the loops in logic, it is being responsible for the impact of our theology upon LGBTQ lives. Living in the fullness of love, joy and peace starts with listening
  • Is It Safe To Come Out?
    03 February 2022
    Kendra Arsenault, Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship have come together to bring you the premiere episode of Imago Gei where we share the latest on queer theology, stories, and a minority perspective on faith. Today, we are easing ourselves in the conversation by posing the question: Is It Safe? LGBTQ church members are often faced with the challenging question: do I disclose my queer identity in a hostile environment or do I stay closeted until a later day when/if I feel safe? Safe spaces, safe churches, and safe people are the focus of today's topic as we learn what it means to approach difficult topics with self-energy and learn the effects of hostile church environments on the mental health of queer members.
  • Imago Gei Introduction
    20 January 2022
    Hello everyone, it’s me, Kendra Arsenault. Spectrum Magazine, SDA Kinship, along with myself, have come together to bring you a brand new podcast series called… “Imago Gei,” where we bring you the latest on queer theology and a minority perspective on faith.