The Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry

Education and Training for Scholars, Faith Communities, and Activists

Upcoming Events 

“Invisibility = Death”: Brown Bag Lunch w/ Dr. Justin Tanis

March 6, 2015, 12:00pm - 1:00pm, Doug Adams Gallery, PSR
Silence = Death” was a seminal statement in the 1980s and 1990s during the height of the AIDS years. It was the slogan of the activist group ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) but it also conveyed a specific strategy for addressing the devastation of AIDS. The slogan, Silence = Death was not only about words, however, but also about the larger question of invisibility. Activists sought to make the suffering of those impacted by HIV/AIDS visible through posters, protests, political funerals, and visibility campaigns in order to invigorate research, treatment, and compassionate responses. Sponsored by CARE. Click Here For More Information 

The #BornPerfect Campaign:
A Conversation on Ending Conversion Therapy

March 19, 2015, 6:30pm - 8:30pm, Doug Adams Gallery, PSR
Proponents of so-called "reparative" or "conversion therapy" claim that they can "cure" sexual orientation and gender identity, but these practices have long been debunked by mental health professionals as both ineffective and damaging. Yet the practice continues, often driven by conservative faith communities, and survivors of these programs must grapple with their harm legacies.  CLGS and the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) will host this panel discussion on the role of progressive faith communities in dismantling the harmful practices of conversion therapy. Click Here For More Information. 

Liberating Religious Liberty: Symposium & Eighth Annual Boswell Lecture

April 16-17, 2015, Pacific School of Religion
Kate Kendell, Executive Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights will deliver this year’s John. E Boswell Lecture. A one-day symposium will follow addressing Religious Freedom legislation, the discriminatory implication for LGBTQ and Reproductive Rights movements, and progressive faithbased strategies for combatting these policies. Click Here For More Information. 

CLGS News & Commentary 

Black LGBT Faith Leaders United Statement

Black LGBT Religious Leaders Act with Historically Black Churches to declare “Black Bodies Matter.” LGBT Black Christians and faith leaders join tens of thousands of historically Black congregations/denominations and allies to wear black to church on Sunday, December 14 in response to police brutality: “Black LGBT bodies must matter, too!” Read Full Press Release Here. 

Transitioning to Inclusion

CLGS has recentley published, Transition to Inclusion: A guide to welcoming transgender children and their families in your community of faith. This resource was written by Kelsey Pacha and made possible by a grant from the Atkinson Foundation. We plan to make this resource available nationwide. Click Here For More Information.  

Were some Catholic saints transgender? Berkeley show raises eyebrows

Kimberly Winston of Religion News Service published this article about Alma Lopez's art exhibition, "Queer Santas, Holy Violence" sponsored by CLGS and the Center for th Arts, Religion and Education at Pacific School of Religion on November 6, 2014. The article begins, "Step into the one-room art gallery inside the Pacific School of Religion  and look closely at the saints in the paintings:  Some have beards; some have buzz cuts; some have their breasts obscured; some appear in unisex clothes like tanks tops and jeans." Click Here to Read the Full Article.  

TRANS* Seminarians Cohort 2015 - Applications Open 

In this amazing and intense opportunity, participants will attend and actively participate in 3 powerful conferences, build relationships with new and known colleagues, and journey deep into the meaning of what leadership means and feels like for people of faith who also identify as transgender or genderqueer. Click Here For More Information 

Virtual Lecture Series – Queering Theologies 

Prestigious theologians will present seven webinars of queering God’s talk. Participants will be able to access a live conference or watch it at a later time online. Lectures will be offered in Spanish, Portuguese, and English. The Darlene Garner Institute for Iberoamerican Leadership Formation of the Metropolitan Community Churches and the Theologies Team of the Metropolitan Community Churches have coordinated this series of webinars for 2014 in memory of Argentinian theologian Marcella Althaus-Reid. Click Here For More Information.  

CLGS' Pastoral Care and LGBT Seniors Project

With a generous grant from the San Francisco FAITHS Program, CLGS began an outreach in 2013 to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) seniors in residential care in the Bay Area. The program offers pastoral care and chaplaincy visits to seniors who are residing in group facilities or are shut-ins. In addition to this direct service, CLGS has also produced a written resource for clergy about the particular needs of LGBT seniors Click Here For More Information.  

New Online Exhibit Features First Gay-Positive Report by a Religious Group

CLGS' LGBT Religious Archives Network ( has released a new online exhibition that portrays the dramatic story of 11 British Quakers responsible for the groundbreaking 1963 report Towards a Quaker View of Sex. Read Press Release Here 

Unearthing The Surprising Religious History Of American Gay Rights Activism

The CLGS LGBT Religious Archive Network is prominently featured in this June 28, 2014 Huffington Post article focused on LBGT Religious History. Written by Jaweed Kaleem. Click Here to Read the Full Article. 

Will S.F. Archbishop promote hatred or reconciliation?

Bernard Schlager, interim president of the Pacific School of Religion and Executive Director of CLGS, discusses Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone's decision to speak at the National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) anti-LGBT rally in Washington D.C. on June 19th. Click Here to Read the Full Article. 

Urge San Francisco Archbishop to Cancel Appearance with 
Anti-LGBT Extremists

While 57% of Catholics now support the freedom to marry and many Catholic leaders, including Pope Francis, have made affirming statements about LGBT people, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone is planning to march alongside some of the most hateful anti-LGBT extremists in the nation at the National Organization for Marriage’s (NOM) rally in Washington, D.C. on June 19, 2014. Sign the petition urging Archbishop Cordileone not to participate in anti-LGBT march. Click Here To Read More. 

Moral Monday Issues Forum attracts diverse crowd

The Umoja Project was one of five organizations that organized the Moral Monday Issues Forum on Monday, February 3rd in Hickory, North Carolina. The Umoja Project, The Hickory Branch NAACP, the Catawba County NAACP, the Greater Hickory Ministerial Alliance, and Faith in America partnered to draw clergy, lay leaders and community representatives to this one-day conference.Click Here to Read the Full Article.  

Queer Clergy: A History of Gay and Lesbian Ministry in American Protestantism

Since 1640, the Pilgrim Press has published cutting-edge books that challenged convention and irritated church and crown. That edgy tradition continues as Pilgrim Press announces the release of Queer Clergy: A History of Gay and Lesbian Ministry in American Protestantism by Minnesota author and ally, RW Holmen. The book chronicles the journey of gay and lesbian Christians to be fully accepted and fully included in the congregations of mainline Christianity. The book contains five sections, one for each of the principal mainline denominations (UCC, UMC, ELCA, PC(USA), and Episcopal). Click Here To Read the Full Press Release

Many Voices Video Campaign - Black LGBT Spirituality

On October 11th, National Coming Out Day, Many Voices began releasing polished, compelling video testimonials from Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people sharing their stories about coming up in the Black Church. A total of 6 videos will be released through November 15, just prior to Transgender Day of Remembrance (November 20). Many Voices works closely with the CLGS UMOJA Project 

Seminary Presidents Urge a Yes Vote for ENDA

CLGS has gathered the support of 11 seminary presidents in urging the senate to vote Yes for the Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA) that would provide protections against workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Read the seminary presidents' letter to senate here.  

CLGS Sponsors LGBT and Faith Film Festival

CLGS has signed on as a co-sponsoring organization for the On Level Ground Film Festival,  being held from February 20 – March 2 in Pasadena, CA. Designed to promote dialogue among people of faith about issues of sexuality and gender, the event will include both large screenings and smaller venues for deeper conversations. The festival is accepting submissions of films —short and feature length—between now and January 1. 

CLGS Applauds Pope Francis’ Message of Inclusion

(September 19, 2013, Berkeley, CA) The Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies in Religion and Ministry (CLGS) applauds Pope Francis for his bold leadership emphasizing love and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. In an extensive interview with the journal La Civiltà Cattolica this week, the pontiff took issue with the intense focus that the church has had in recent decades on homosexuality, abortion and contraception at the neglect of more central Gospel issues such as poverty. Read Full Article Here. 

Welcome Justin Tanis as CLGS Managing Director!

All of us at CLGS are very pleased to announce the hiring of Justin Tanis as the new Managing Director at CLGS. With Bernie Schlager taking on responsibilities as Pacific School of Religion Dean, we created a new position at CLGS to manage all the many programs and activities of the Center – Managing Director. We are pleased indeed that Justin has agreed to take on this important role. Click Here For More Information.  

Expert: New Pope Not Likely to Soften Same-Sex Marriage Opposition

Bernie Schlager, the Executive Director of CLGS, is quoted in this February 11, 2013 KQED article. "Don't expect the next pope to preside over a gay couple's marriage. Pope Benedict XVI, who announced on Monday that he will step down as head of the Catholic Church at the end of February, has taken a hard line on same-sex marriage." Read Full Article Here.   

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