By Sophie Acebo | Reporter
Justin Lee, an author and advocate for affirmation of the LGBTQ+ Christian community, will be speaking on campus from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Tuesday on the fifth floor of Cashion Academic Center.
The event is titled “Christianity and LGBTQ+ Persons” and is being hosted by Baylor’s Diana R. Garland School of Social Work. It is part of Baylor’s Conversation Series and is free to the public.
Lee’s mission in visiting Baylor’s campus is the hope that dialogue can be created in a safe environment and to further movements towards acceptance and advocacy to help LGBTQ+ students feel “loved and supported and cared for as human beings.”
“I would like to offer suggestions for things I’ve seen work on other campuses to improve the level of grace in our conversations and show the world what it looks like to show grace and love in the midst of disagreement,” Lee said.
Lee is also the founder of Q Christian Fellowship, the world’s largest LGBTQ+ Christian advocacy organization. He is internationally known for speaking on creating dialogue between faith and sexuality.
Cerro Gordo, Ill., junior Mason McNamara is excited to attend the event and is hopeful for the turnout Lee will bring.
“I’m excited to see how the students of Baylor, both LGBT and allies, will react to the event and I’m also curious to see who shows up from the faculty and staff of Baylor,” McNamara said.
Lee has experience speaking on a variety of college campuses, regardless of what their values or traditions may be. He is a strong advocate for opening the floor for dialogue and bridging the gap between Christianity and the LGBTQ+ community, something that McNamara hopes brings change.
“I view this as progress for Baylor and I hope it helps people understand that people of the LGBTQ+ community are simply people and we are just like anyone else,” McNamara said.
Lee has also published books in an effort to help parents be more accepting towards their children who identify within the LGBTQ community and has found success in his ministry.
“I often talk to parents whose children have come out and the parents disagree with some of their children’s theology or decisions,” Lee said. “Then I get to talk to those parents about ways that they can show love to their child without compromising their own theology.”