Last May I spent a day in Chicago’s most historic gay bar, Roscoe’s.
Besides having great food and a very helpful staff, the reason I was there was to shoot the adolescence portion of The Marin Foundation‘s new DVD curriculum Love is an Orientation.
Why was I part of this project?
First – I believe that the church as a whole, and youth ministry in particular, does not have an answer for ministering to the LGBT community. I should rephrase that… there are some rather unhelpful extremes. What I love about The Marin Foundation and Andy Marin‘s approach is that they don’t pretend to have all the answers. But they do know one thing. Regardless of your sexual orientation, you were made in the image of God and Jesus loves you enough to die for you.
There’s a lot of power in saying you don’t know all the answers. Their approach might not be the most popular and it certainly doesn’t lead to easy fundraising like their pro-gay or anti-gay counterparts… but standing in the middle is a powerful position and they have good company in acting as bridge builders.
Second – I believe a lot of bad things happen in youth ministry because there is inadequate training for youth workers. I feel pretty confident that Ginny Olson and I give solid training for ministering to individual students who are LGBT, including how to handle it when a student comes out to you, as well as how to create a safe environment for all types of students.
Why should you buy this DVD?
There’s a good chance you’ve already read Love is an Orientation. Essentially, this takes the teachings of the book and melds it into 6 sessions for a church team or small group to work through. It’s interwoven with teachings from the book, interviews with people in and around the LGBT community, and a sprinkling of outside voices like Ginny and myself.
Sorry for the shameless plug here. I’m not making a dime off of this thing. But I do want to encourage you to head of to The Marin Foundation’s online store and buy a copy of the DVD.