As culture’s ship of sexual identity sails for open waters, many well-meaning Christians watch in confusion and dismay. In our increasingly open society, what is a Christian to make of the changing attitudes towards gender, sex, and love? How do we balance truth with love, or accompaniment with our heavenly destination? Are we even going the same direction?
Those we encounter, whatever the stage of their own journey, are fellow human beings. Each person - you, and me, and all of us - is chosen and beloved by our Heavenly Father. Each person is invited to encounter Jesus Christ and to be fully alive in the Spirit.
But getting there together isn’t always we easy. Situations are complicated and what once seemed self-evident has become controversial. Talking honestly and gently about sexuality, orientation, and embodiment isn’t easy in the best of times. And, as you’ve likely noticed, those times are ever a-changing.
At Eden Invitation, we’re interested in being human together. Whether it’s young adults and brews, a church-wide event, or an adult conference breakout session, we're ready to share! Our presentations weave together Catholic anthropology, a Biblical sexual ethic, cultural insight, and personal testimony.
Those experiencing same sex desires or gender discordance is not a negligible amount in the Church or in the world. We're committed to helping your faith community grow in understanding of Church teaching and the LGBT+ experience, as well as feel equipped for ongoing accompaniment. Our current presentation does just that!
Any appearance of Eden Invitation at your event will include two team members, social media marketing materials, and an advance meeting with you and/or your team.
| INTO THE LONGING |
Life & Love Beyond the LGBT+ Paradigm
At the center of every human heart, there is an ache to know and be known, to love and be loved, to give and to receive. For persons experiencing same sex desires or gender discordance, our Christian truths on the human person are a place of both crisis and commitment. If desire is off-kilter, where do we direct it? Together we examine three potential stumbling blocks for LGBT+ persons within our Catholic Faith, as well as opportunities for grace and resurrected life in the midst of our longings.
LET'S GET STARTED!
For speaking inquiries and to receive additional information about pricing and the booking process, contact us using the form below. We would suggest reading the "Common Questions" section further down the page before completing your request.
Please note: We're a small team nurturing a movement for disciples on the LGBT+ spectrum.
Our capacity for speaking engagements is limited, and we may not be able to accommodate your preferred dates. Please consider prayer and support for our organization, so we can continue to grow!
We are currently accepting talk inquiries for the following months:
2020 | August, September, October
2021 | February, March
Q: Can you create a unique presentation for our audience? (i.e. pastoral ministers, parents, etc.)
A: The presentation listed above is material we passionately believe in! We believe its principles are foundational for any audience. For a more specific application of the talk to your audience, we would be happy to provide presentation-specific discussion questions for the following categories: "College & Young Adult," "Pastoral Ministry," and "Parish & Family Life."
However, some areas fall outside our scope. These include, but are not limited to, targeted advice regarding minor children, faith-based school environments, or issues relating to Catholic canon law (i.e. sacrament reception).
Q: Our teenagers really need to hear your message! Can you come speak to them?
A: All of our talks are intended for adult audiences. We do not offer presentations exclusively for minors, nor do we create minor-specific presentations for parents or pastoral ministers.
Q: Your website includes a lot of references to Catholic beliefs and texts. Are your presentations suited to a wider Christian audience?
A: Absolutely! Like many traditional Christians, we believe that the human person is created by God as male or female, and that the God's design for the sexual act is unitive and procreative, intended for expression in an indissoluble, exclusive marriage. Our doctrinal points align with a Biblically-based sexual ethic.
Q: Do all talks include personal testimony?
A: Our presentations include personal testimony to the degree it is relevant and supports the key themes. When it comes to our faith, the personal witness story communicates more than doctrine alone. We think Pope Paul VI was spot on when he wrote, “modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers, and if he does listen to teachers, it is because they are witnesses” (On Evangelization in the Modern World, 41). At Eden Invitation, our personal witnesses set us apart from many other speakers and catechists. While we are sensitive to the particular needs of each audience and may adjust testimonial elements accordingly, it is our policy not to omit personal witness from our presentations.
Q: Why do you say both “LGBT+” and “same sex desires”? What will you say in the presentation?
A: We believe in being faithful to the Church and responsive to culture. As you move through daily life, most people will refer to themselves using LGBT+ language. If we want to be in dialogue and relationship, it’s important to understand what those terms mean and why people use them. Additionally, “LGBT+” or "LGBTQ" are an umbrella terms for more diverse experiences of attraction and identity. It includes those with an intersex medical condition, gender discordance, and those whose experience doesn’t align neatly within standard definitions. If we are speaking of broad groupings of sexual minorities or secular movements, we will most likely say “LGBT” or “LGBT+.” Our use of “LGBT+” or other culture terms are not an endorsement of an ideology which views sexual attraction as personal identity. This will be clearly stated in any presentation.
If we are speaking specifically of those who experience “same sex desires,” that is the wording we will use. We do not use “homosexuality” in our literature or presentations due to it’s very specific modern connotation of exclusive same sex attraction.
Q: Great Q&A section! Can you do Q&A after your presentation?
A: Sort of. We will not conduct large group Q&A sessions. We recognize that sexual orientation and gender identity bring up a lot of questions, both personal and theoretical, which are difficult to answer with adequate nuance in that setting. Here's what we do instead! Our team members are happy to stay for individual questions and conversations after the presentation itself. We're also in the process of creating an accompaniment resource, which should be available by the dates listed above.