Wednesday, April 17, 2018 – 7:30 pm
Does God Love LGBTQ People?
– Yes! Says Reverend Jerrell Walls
Whether you are a church goer or not, all of us have to deal with the hostility of "religious" people to the LGBTQ community. Under the current administration they are empower to attack the hard won rights of LGBTQ persons and their families. Unfortunately, family members sometimes use scripture to reject us.
The anger and pain these attacks cause are very familiar to Rev. Jerrell Walls. As the son of an Evangelical Christian Pastor, he has experienced the negativity that comes from well-meaning church people. His experience sent him on a journey to look again at the scriptures that were used against the LGBTQ community.
After studying those biblical passages in view of context, culture, language and audience, he found that faith and sexual orientation or gender identity are not in conflict.
Rev. Walls will share some of his insights with us, and suggest some ways of dealing with the "church people" in our lives who reject us and our loved ones.
The Rev. Jerrell Walls is the founding pastor of Christ Chapel of the Valley(CCOV) in the Sun Valley area of Los Angeles, started on January 12, 1992. His work has been primarily with helping the LGBTQ community know they are loved and accepted by God. He serves on the LAPD North Hollywood Division Community Police Advisory board and on the religious roundtable for LA County Department of Mental Health. Pastor Jerrell also serves as co-chair to Los Angeles Queer Interfaith Clergy Council (LAQuICC) as well as on the board of Christ Chapel Association of Churches.
Visit their website at: www.christchapel-la.org
Previous 2018 Guest Speakers
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 – 7:30 pm
What's YOUR Story
– Charles Chan Massey wants to help you tell it through the Personal Stories Project
In 2012, Charles Chan Massey discovered what PFLAG members have known for a long time. Stories change lives. Especially the lives of LGBTQ people and their families.
Born, by and large, into straight families, LGBTQ persons often feel a sense of isolation. Hearing the stories of others with similar experiences is reassuring, liberating, and empowering. And that goes for their parents, family members and friends as well.
When accounts of his own openly gay life made a difference for other people, Massey started the Personal Stories Project with his co-founder and collaborator Sara Christie. Their goal was to provide a forum where LGBTQ people and straight allies (like parents and siblings) could share key life experiences with others in the community.
The Personal Stories project collects and publish these stories in written and video form, providing a compelling experience for the reader or viewer on a deeply emotional level. The Project's goal is to connect people with others who may have found themselves in similar circumstances and end isolation, embarrassment and shame.
As an "accidental activist" himself, Charles also works to inspire activism in others by connecting his audience with charities that promote the welfare of the LGBTQ community. At the end of every narrative, the storyteller is encouraged to mention such an organization that will benefit from a donate to the Personal Stories Project.
Massey's organization complements the work of PFLAG Los Angeles' Speakers Bureau, whose members tell their stories at schools of all levels, businesses and community organizations. His organization enables storytellers to reach large numbers through the power of social media.
Does it take courage to share intimate personal experiences with others? Yes, and Charles Chan Massey says it's one of the greatest contributions you can make.
Visit their website at: www.personalstoriesproject.org
Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018 – 7:30 pm
An Opportunity: Tell Your Story
and Change the World
– Asher Lewis offers families a chance
to make a difference
The Project: Mr. Lewis is currently producing a new documentary CLOSET DOORS which explores the other half of the coming out conversation—the one that LGBTQIA+ persons rarely get to hear fully. What do parents think and feel when they are plunged into a new reality? Suddenly, they have to reshape their world view, plans, and relationships with their child—and with other members of their families and friends. Having a child come out changes a mom or dad as a person, a parent, a spouse, a church member, and a citizen.
Through a series of interviews, this documentary fixes its lens on the mothers, fathers, grandparents, and guardians of LGBTQIA+ individuals who have come out of the closet. The film looks into the relationships that are healthy and healed, as well as those in which the coming out process has created fractures. It follows straight family members as they deal with their own coming out process.
The film also looks at the historical dimensions of coming out—from the devastating revelations during the height of the AIDS crisis to the more optimistic conversations in the new era of marriage equality. It also explores the reality that LGBTQ persons and their families share—coming out is a life-long process—a journey, not a destination.
Wanted: Lewis and his team are seeking to interview parents, grandparents, foster/step parents and guardians of LGBTQI+ people willing to share their experiences—good, bad, and everything in between. You will have a chance to tell your story on camera in a safe, non-judgmental environment and describe how your beliefs, relationships and views have changed on this journey.
Filmmaker: Asher Lewis, winner of two Telly Awards, and whose work received an Emmy nomination has worked across the range of entertainment media including films, television series, documentaries, and commercials. His documentaries have included candid conversation about acting with Dabney Colman, Peter Falk, Harry Dean Stanton, and Sidney Pollack to name a few of the luminaries he has worked with.
Recently, he has been working as Co-Producer and Editor on the groundbreaking documentary series
OUT OF THE BOX, a tour de force multi-part documentary series profiling the power of television to shape hearts and minds through the lens of the LGBT rights movement.
If you or anyone you know may be interested in telling their story
please send an e-mail NOW to:
Please include the following information:
Your name, age, and city where you live.
Are you the parent, grandparent,
foster/step parent or guardian?
A brief description of your story.
Have you yourself "come out"?
How would your child feel about you
sharing your/their story?
Your primary contact information
(phone & email address)
(be sure to scroll down)
Wednesday, January 17, 2018 – 7:30 pm
— Meet Lindsey Deaton from
the Trans Chorus of Los Angeles!
SPEAKER ISCANCELLEDwe will have more time for support!Transcending age, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, ethnicity, and all those categories that divide us, music opens us to the deep places we all share. TCLA uses that uniting power of music to change minds and hearts about trans and gender non-conforming people.
Since it's founding, TCLA has drawn attention to the trans community and trans issues through live performances, community engagement and social and traditional media. TCLA is using music to communicate a communal feeling of equality in a way rarely experienced in other forms of media & artistic expression. It is the largest group of trans and gender non-conforming people anywhere in the world who gather together regularly to raise their voices in song.
TCLA provides both a safe space in which trans individuals come together and sing, and an environment for audience to enjoy music while meeting trans and gender non-conforming individuals, perhaps for the first time.
The harmony TCLA creates is deeply moving—both musical and symbolic of the beauty diverse people make when they work together.