True Colors, Inc.

June 23, 2010 


The next SI meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 14th at 6:30 PM at the UCC Church, 474 Broad Street in Meriden.  We wil continue to plan both workshops for the conference and statewide activities designed to create safe, affirming spaces for LGBT youth to do their spiritual work.
June 1, 2010 Minutes
Spiritual Institute Mission: 
To create safe opportunities for LGBT youth to do their spiritual work

Present:   John Istvan, Darrick Jackson, Robin McHaelen, Molly Nolan

We postponed final decisions until the fall when the entire team is back from summer hiatus but have made progress in both areas.
Goal ONE: Create a set of workshops that can be incorporated in some way into the annual true colors conference without violating the church/state separation:  Current Ideas include:
  • What does it mean to be spiritual in a "queer' context? 
  • An historical perspective on Biblical language regarding same sex relationships
  • Spirituality in Recovery
  • When beliefs collide: integrating tenants of non-violent communication into the faith conversation
Goal TWO: Identify, prioritize and produce some number of activities during the year in support of the mission.  Some ideas include:
  • Spiritual Speed Dating or a Spiritual Fair (inviting GSAs, youth in the mentoring program, youth in area faith group programs, etc.)
  • Holding another Radically Inclusive Spiritual Revival
  • Hosting Peterson Toscano's work about Transgender folks in the Bible with a discussion
Who is missing from the table?
  • Jewish communities of Faith (Robin to reach out to ADL to see what kind of contacts they may have)
  • Hartford Seminary, Ingrid Matson and Jan Gregory(Darrick to reach to them about the work being done with Christian/Islam reconciliation)
  • Catholic Groups (post- meeting note: St Pat's/St Michael's in Hartford agreed to sign on as supporters)
  • Pagan communities
  • Buddhist communities (post meeting note: Robin reached out to two groups after the meeting but haven't heard back)
  • Hindu Communities
  • Quaker Meeting Houses
  • PFLAG: (Molly reach out to Mary Ellen)
Current Members of the Coalition:
  • Reverends Marilyn Bowens & Aaron Miller (Metropolitan Community Church New Haven); 
  • Reverends George Chien & Julio Flores, (Metropolitan Community Church, Hartford);
  • Sharon Cutts, LCSW
  • Reverend Claudia Elferdink (Shoreline Unitarian Universalist Society)
  • Pastor Shirley Gadson (Open Door Ministries, Bridgeport);
  • John Hinkston (Integrity, Trinity Church, Hartford);
  • John Istvan, LCSW
  • Reverend Darrick Jackson (Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Storrs)
  • Reverend Barbara Jamestone (Unitarian Society of Hartford);
  • Reverend Charla Kouadio, Recovering Promise Ministry, Springfield, MA;
  • Reverend Jan K. Neilson (The Universalist Church, West Hartford)
  • Molly Nolan, lay leader (United Church on the Green, New Haven)
  • Reverend Alice O'Donovan (Westfield Congregational Church);
  • Reverend James Olsen (United Congregational Church, Meriden);
  • Reverend Josh Pawelek (Unitarian Universalist  Society, East, Manchester);
  • Reverend Sue Pritchard(United Church of Christ, Coventry)
  • Michael Reynolds (St. Patrick/St. Anthony, Hartford, Open Hearts, GLBT Ministry)
  • Bishop John Selders (Amistad United Church of Christ, Hartford);
  • Reverend Laura Westby(First Congregational Church of Danbury, UCC)   
Thank you for your interest, and for your support for LGBT youth and families. I look forward to seeing you and any interested guests you may bring at our next meeting on Juyly 14th,

Robin McHaelen
True Colors, Inc.