Urbana was an awesome experience that included worshipping with over 15,000 people. Over the four day conference held once every three years, I presented one seminar myself and served on a panel with three other national speakers on this topic. Altogether, there were at least six (6) different seminars on how evangelicals can extend Christ’s love to LGBT+ friends and loved ones. Every seminar was packed – rooms designed to hold 250 were crammed with 300-400 people sitting all over the floor and extending out into the hallways within listening distance. This topic was in high demand and the passion of campus ministry students and student leaders was palpable. The question and answer sessions lasted beyond the allotted time at every single seminar on this topic. I was blessed to be able to counsel and pray for dozens of male and female students wrestling with either bisexuality, same-sex attraction, porn addiction or codependency. All in all, this conference proved to be an incredible opportunity to speak Christ-centered wisdom into a history of culture war rhetoric. By all accounts, a new language and conversation is emerging – the church is at long last getting “real” on a topic it has struggled to address for decades. It was an honor and privilege to be able to speak at Urbana and meet so many awesome students filled with passion to reflect Christ to LGBT+ friends.
UPDATE: You can now listen to my panel discussion with other speakers here. Tab down to “Inside the LGBT+ Community” under Seminars and Workshops for December 29, 2009. Unfortunately, during my own seminar, the recorder broke! So frustrating. That’s life…
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