Young Adults Discuss Christian Faith and LGBT Equality on Northwestern Campus

National Tour to End Religion-Based Discrimination Targeting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People

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SOULFORCE PRESS RELEASE: April 25, 2007
For Immediate Release
Contact: Brandon Kneefel, West Bus Media Director
Cell: 612-715-6138, brandon@equalityride.com
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(St. Paul, Minnesota) — Twenty-five lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and straight young adults joined Northwestern College students, faculty, and administrators to open a campus dialogue about faith and identity. As the shortest stop for the 2007 Equality Ride westbound bus, Northwestern College granted the Riders only four hours, to be shared with the school and with an outside group invited by the school to hold presentations in lieu of extended time for dialogue with students.

In the limited time allotted, Equality Riders offered presentations on progressive theology, gender and the Genesis narrative, and an international perspective on faith and sexual identity. In addition, Riders responded to presentations made by an alumnus of the school and two guest speakers who used the Equality Ride visit to share their experiences as ex-gays. In small roundtable discussions, Riders encouraged Northwestern students to think about the opposition of scientific and professional organizations — including the American Psychological Association, the American School Health Association, the Interfaith Alliance Foundation, and the National Association of School Psychologists — to the ex-gay movement, and to consider the alternative initiative www.beyondexgay.com.

"We are disheartened that even within the restricted time frame of our visit, the school insisted upon reiterating its own position and thus limiting the educational opportunity for its students," says stop coordinator Alexey Bulokhov. Because Soulforce Q is based in the twin cities, Alexey noted that he looks forward to continuing to work with the Northwestern College community and developing further programming to counter the miseducation that is taking place on campus.

Many Northwestern students thanked the Equality Riders for speaking, and some apologized for the school’s discriminatory policy and rhetoric. Additional students reached out to Riders via email and written notes to share the challenges of living truth to their identities as LGBT people and to ask the Equality Riders to pray for closeted students on campus.


Soulforce Q is the young adult division of Soulforce, a social justice organization that works to end political and religious oppression of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. For more information go to www.soulforce.org or www.equalityride.com.

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