Pursuing a unity that is deeper than agreement
Welcome to Oriented to Love, a dialogue program of Christians for Social Action
Are you a faith leader who feels unprepared for (or just uncomfortable with) some of the questions you are asked and the people you serve? Do you need spaces where you can wrestle honestly, and in community, with these challenging questions—matters that may seem academic for some but for others can mean the difference between Christian community and isolation/loss of faith, sometimes even between life and death?
We can help! We offer brave, confidential spaces where leaders like you can wrestle with the divisive topics of sexuality and gender and where you can learn to ask better questions. We offer webinars and public conversations to give you access to a variety of LGBTQ+ voices—without the weight of pastoral responsibility.
Are you an LGTBQ+ Christian who has struggled to believe that there is a place for you in the Body of Christ? Perhaps you’ve been treated as an “issue” or a problem to be solved, and you feel misunderstood, unwelcome, even traumatized, but you cling to Jesus and yearn for a community in which to deepen your faith walk, offer your gifts, and thrive. We can help! We support your faith walk through a theologically diverse, compassionately curious community of Christians who are willing to risk vulnerability for the reward of deeper discipleship—a community where you are lovingly seen and highly valued.
Are you a family member or friend of a queer Christian, and feel battered and confused by how often the Good News, as lived out by the church, fails to be good for you or your loved ones? We can help! We equip Christians to love well across deep difference—with training on transforming conflict through curiosity, facilitating dialogue amidst disagreement, and building community that reflects the full family of God.
Christians disagree on what constitutes a faithful living out of our sexuality and gender, but unity is still possible—a unity that is deeper than agreement—and so is true Christian community. Check out our events below to find out how we’re working together to help the Body of Christ become more oriented to love!
“I’m hopeful now because I've experienced something that seemed impossible before Oriented to Love: seeing people who hold fundamental disagreements come together and learn to listen to and love each other. I now feel I could possibly be brave in other spaces too, and hopefully create the same type of environment for people to dialogue.”
Danny, full-time campus minister, Orlando, FL
“It was healing to sit across from people whose beliefs were different from mine regarding such an important part of myself. The love that centered us all was palpable and beautiful.”
Stefie, graduate student, San Francisco
“Oriented to Love has afforded me a model to imagine applying in my church, where there is difference of position, thought and experience. The work of peacemaking on the ground in light of the hard and heavy conversations is something that I ache to see in my church.”
Matt, pastor of teaching and outreach, Christ City Church, Washington, DC
“Oriented to Love eliminated my fear of having to have all the answers. The conversations I start now flow from a heart of wanting dialogue and knowing how to ask good questions.”
Briana, entrepreneur, London, England
By Bridget Eileen Rivera
Originally published Jul 27, 2020
I’ve been thinking a lot about “positions” lately and what it even means to hold a position.
When people ask about my “position” on “homosexuality,” it’s rarely in the interest of broadening their own perspective, understanding my own, or (God forbid) adjusting their beliefs.
With Juan Pablo Herrera, Beth Carlson-Malena, Elizabeth Delgado Black, and Grant Hartley
Listen in on a powerful conversation among four queer-identifying Jesus-followers, two who hold a more traditional understanding of sexuality and two who hold a more progressive understanding.
By John Betten
What’s the difference between acceptance and approval?
When I think of straight friends who love and support me as a gay Christian, I think of my friend Chico. Chico is not “affirming” in the way Christians normally use that term, and he does not always approve of my actions or opinions when it comes to sexuality.