New Transgender Education Resource for Churches from the Institute for Welcoming Resources

For Immediate Release

National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Contact: 

Pedro Julio Serrano
Communications Coordinator
(Office) 646.358.1479
(Cell) 787.602.5954
pserrano@theTaskForce.org

New Transgender Education Resource for Churches from the Institute for Welcoming Resources

WASHINGTON - The Institute for Welcoming Resources (IWR), a program of the
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, today announced the release of
transACTION, a new curriculum designed for churches and religious
institutions to help congregants and members understand and welcome
transgender persons into their congregations and faith settings.

"Too
often transgender people looking for a place to worship can't find one
to call their spiritual home because most congregations and religious
institutions are not ready to welcome them as their companions in
faith," says the Rev. Rebecca Voelkel, Institute for Welcoming
Resources and faith work director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task
Force. "Yet, many transgender people of faith are searching for the
same things that other believers want: a loving community where worship
and working for equality and justice are the focus of their faith
experience."

transACTION is
designed to help churches and institutions address this issue of
understanding and welcome by providing step-by-step training about the
needs, apprehensions and fears of transgender people - as well as the
wealth of gifts and graces they bring - while responding to the
concerns of the church or religious institution.

The
program can be used in three sessions: How Do We Get to Understanding,
How Do We Get to Acceptance, and How Do We Get to Welcoming. All
sessions include discussions and activities to go along with the
information provided in the curriculum.

"We
tried to make this a learning experience that would go beyond just the
basics of gender identity and gender expression in order to give
participants an understanding of the issues and concerns that
transgender people have when trying to express their faith and
spirituality in a church or any religious setting," says Barbara Satin,
author of the curriculum and a transgender advocate around issues of
faith and aging.

transACTION is available for download from the Institute of Welcoming Resources Web site at www.welcomingresources.org. There are two versions of the program: a leader's version and a participant's version.

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