Love Lead Us Conference:
17th February 10am - 4pm @ St Mark’s Church, Sheffield.
A pioneering conference in the North of England is seeking to engage with the issues surrounding safeguarding, LGBTQIA+ Christians and positive ways forward for people of faith harmed by spiritual abuse. Based at St Mark’s Church in Sheffield and featuring an intersectional range of speakers, Love Lead Us aspires to name the risks inherent in faith based organisations, address those in a supportive manner and provide examples of people moving forward positively and championing diversity in the face of discrimination.
Bringing together experts with lived experience of inclusion (and exclusion), the Love Lead Us Conference is an opportunity for connection, conversation and education in a curated safe space. There will be a quiet sensory space for those who require it, and pastoral support on hand for those who find the topics explored challenging. Talks will be given throughout the day, with a panel discussion to end. Representatives from affirming churches will be discussing how we can move forward with inclusive faith, allowing love to lead us.
Speakers and Contributors:
Rebecca Parnaby-Rooke, co-leader of The Ordinary Office, speaking on inclusion and why "Being unsafe for any ultimately excludes all": a discussion of diversity and disability in UK Church spaces. As co-leader of online community 'The Ordinary Office' Rebecca advocates for those disenfranchised by mainstream churches while providing pastoral support and resources for those who wish to continue exploring their faith.
Stephen Parsons, editor of Surviving Church Blog, on "Concerns around the misuse of power and misuse of exorcism within the Church." Stephen has several decades of experience in and out of the church, and has published books and run a blog examining patterns of abuse within the wider church for over ten years.
Chrissie Chevasutt, author of "Heaven Come Down - The Story of a Transgender Disciple" and forthcoming book “Developing Best Practise in Pastoral Care and Safeguarding. From the perspective of victims, survivors and LGBTQIA+ People." will be sharing her wisdom in her talk “Developing Best Practice in Pastoral Care and Safeguarding for LGBTQIA+ people in a church context." Chrissie is an outreach worker for the trans, intersex and non-binary community, employed by St Columba’s United Reformed Church in Oxford.
Matthew Drapper, author of Bringing Me Back to Me, is hosting the conference. Matthew researches Queer History, and uses various media to highlight the use of spiritual abuse throughout time as a form of insider/outsider power play. He draws connections between past & present and hopes to build safer spaces for the future.
Tickets are available priced at £20 from Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/love-lead-us-conference-tickets-731812068597