Advancing LGBT Civil Rights

National Religious Colloquy

Saturday, May 3, 2:30 pm - 3:45 pm
The University of the Arts, Connelly Auditorium

211 South Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA


Reform and changes in tenor are transforming the relationship between homosexuality and the Roman Catholic Church, the Mormon Church and the United Methodist Church. A distinguished panel, including a defrocked Methodist minister, discusses these remarkable shifts.

Rabbi Linda Holtzman (Moderator)
Rabbinic Formation Specialist
Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

Rabbi Linda Holtzman is the former rabbi of Congregation Mishkan Shalom in Philadelphia, where she served previously as interim rabbi and as education director. She was also the rabbi of Beth Israel Congregation in Coatesville, Pa., and Beth Ahava in Philadelphia. She is the founder of the Reconstructionist Hevra Kadisha, also in Philadelphia.

Gerald Argetsinger (Panelist)
Gay Mormon Literature Project

Gerald Argetsinger is an associate professor in the Department of Cultural and Creative Studies at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, a college of the Rochester Institute of Technology. He has held many callings in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. An accomplished playwright, director and producer, Argetsinger is the founder of the Gay Mormon Literature Project.

Sister Jeannine Gramick (Panelist)
New Ways Ministry

Sister Jeannine Gramick, SL, is a cofounder of New Ways Ministry and an executive coordinator for the National Coalition of American Nuns. She was a 2006 Laureate of the International Mother Teresa Awards for her human rights activities. Her story is documented in the film "In Good Conscience: Sister Jeannine Gramick's Journey of Faith."

The Reverend Frank Schaefer (Panelist)

Frank Schaefer is a United Methodist minister from Lebanon County, Pa. He was defrocked for officiating at his son's same-sex wedding.

Leonard J. Swidler (Panelist)
Professor of Catholic Thought and Interreligious Dialogue
Temple University

Leonard J. Swidler is a professor of Catholic thought and interreligious dialogue at Temple University. An expert on Roman Catholic theology, he is the founder and president of both the Association for the Rights of Catholics in the Church and the Dialogue Institute — Interreligious, Intercultural, International. He cofounded and edits the Journal of Ecumenical Studies.

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