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New Resources for Ex-Gay Survivors

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  • Peterson Toscano
    Hi, I know that you have shown interest in t the ex-gay movement and particularly about those of us who have survived harmful ex-gay experiences. Below is a
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 2, 2007
    • 0 Attachment
      Hi, I know that you have shown interest in t the ex-gay movement and
      particularly about those of us who have survived harmful ex-gay
      experiences. Below is a press release about two new resources for
      survivors--a web site and a national conference in June that will be
      a direct response to the Exodus ex-gay conference.
      We are very excited about these developments.
      The full press release is posted at my blog (copy and paste
      www.a_musing.blogspot.com) Please feel free to let others know about
      this news.
      Let me know if you have any questions.
      Peterson

      Peterson Toscano
      Theatrical Performance Activist
      www.petersontoscano.com
      SOULFORCE PRESS RELEASE: April 2, 2007

      For Immediate Release

      Contact: Paige Schilt, Media Director

      Cell: 512-659-1771

      paige@...

      Peterson Toscano, Beyondexgay.com
      Cell: 860.680.0639
      email: peterson@...

      (Austin, TX)—Survivors of ex-gay programs can take advantage of two
      new resources this week. Beyondexgay.com, an online community for
      those who are healing from ex-gay experiences, will go live today.
      Simultaneously, online registration will begin for The Survivor’s
      Conference: Beyond Ex-gay, a face-to-face event scheduled for June 29-
      July 1, and sponsored by beyondexgay.com and Soulforce.

      Online registration is now available for The Survivor’s Conference:
      Beyond Ex-gay, a face-to-face event scheduled for June 29th through
      July 1st, sponsored by beyondexgay.com and Soulforce.

      Recent events have brought national attention to the existence of
      programs intended to modify same-sex desires. While much of that
      attention has focused on whether sexual orientation is subject to
      change, beyondexgay.com and The Survivor’s Conference are the first
      efforts to move beyond that debate in order to focus on the community
      of “survivors”—people who feel they have experienced more harm
      than benefits from ex-gay programs.

      “We use the term ‘survivor’ because we want to emphasize the
      very real psychological trauma that these programs can cause, and
      also because we want to highlight the strength of the men and women
      who, in spite of enormous pressures, come to accept themselves as
      they are,” says Jeff Lutes, a practicing psychotherapist and
      Executive Director of Soulforce (www.soulforce.org).

      The creators of beyondexgay.com (www.beyondexgay.com), Peterson
      Toscano and Christine Bakke, talked to hundreds of fellow ex-gay
      survivors. What they heard, again and again, was that ex-gay
      experiences brought inner turmoil, confusion and shame.

      Many survivors acknowledge that some good came of their ex-gay
      journey. “We grew to understand our sexuality better and in some
      cases even overcame life-controlling problems,” says Toscano, but he
      is quick to point out that the harm most survivors experience far
      outweighs the help they receive. The consensus of the major medical
      and mental health organizations is that homosexuality is not a
      disorder and, therefore, does not need to be cured. The American
      Psychological Association identifies “depression, anxiety, and self-
      destructive behavior” among the possible risks associated with ex-
      gay therapies.

      Toscano spent 17 years and over $30,000 on three continents
      attempting to change or at least contain his unwanted same-sex
      attractions. He ultimately endured two years at the Love in Action
      residential ex-gay program in Memphis, TN.

      “In the end I was still very gay, but also depressed, isolated and
      nearly faithless,” he says.

      Toscano, now a Christian Quaker, has since created a one-person
      comedy about his ex-gay experiences and has presented Doin' Time in
      the Homo No Mo Halfway House and his other work throughout North
      America, Europe, West Africa and the Caribbean. In spring 2005, Bakke
      contacted Toscano after attending one of his performances.

      Christine Bakke herself spent more than 4 years trying to change her
      orientation. She moved to Denver in 1998 to become ex-gay and
      participated in a program affiliated with Exodus International, the
      largest network of ex-gay ministries. In 2003 she realized that while
      she had changed in many areas, her sexual orientation remained the
      same. Bakke’s story will be featured in the May issue of Glamour,
      which hit newsstands April 10. Toscano will appear as a guest on the
      Tyra Banks Show on April 12.

      Bakke and Toscano continued to dialogue, and last spring they decided
      it was time to reach out to more ex-gay survivors through the
      Internet. Together with assistance from their friend, Steve Boese,
      they form the perfect team: Bakke—a graphic designer, Toscano—a
      writer, and Boese—a web guru and founder of MyOrgHost
      (www.myorghost.net).

      Beyondexgay.com currently features diverse narratives from ex-gay
      survivors. It also provides an array of resources, including original
      articles and art by survivors, as well as links to other sites. Soon
      survivors will have the option to join the community and create a
      profile. Through an on-line form, they will document and share their
      own ex-gay experiences. Their responses will then be added to a
      database that will track the variety and scope of ex-gay experiences
      endured by survivors.

      "The ex-gay experience is unique in many ways. No one understands it
      better than those of us who have been through it. Creating a communal
      space for ex-gay survivors to tell their stories allows us to share
      what led us into an ex-gay lifestyle and ways we have been able to
      recover from it,” says Bakke.

      Creating a space for survivors to come together and share their
      stories was also the impetus behind The Survivor’s Conference:
      Beyond Ex-Gay. The conference, which will take place June 29th
      through July 1st at the University of California-Irvine, is co-
      sponsored by the LGBT Resource Center at UC Irvine.

      “We chose Irvine because the annual Exodus Freedom Conference is
      coming to Irvine that week,” says Lutes. “For Soulforce,
      beyondexgay.com, and the LGBT Resource Center at UC Irvine, it is
      very important to provide a positive response to the Exodus message
      that gay men and lesbians are sinful and disordered.”

      If you want to stand in peaceful solidarity to lovingly confront the
      damaging consequences of the ex-gay movement – this conference is
      for you. If you have ever been through an ex-gay experience or been
      damaged by the message that God does not love and affirm you – this
      conference is for you. If you are confused about the Bible and
      homosexuality, currently in an ex-gay program, or thinking about
      trying to change who you are – this conference is for you.


      Schedule of Events

      Friday, June 29, 2007, 7pm - 9pm, Crystal Cove Auditorium (free and
      open to the public): Doing time in the Homo No Mo Halfway House: How
      I survived the Ex-gay Movement - a performance by Peterson Toscano,
      www.homonomo.com

      Jason and deMarcoSaturday, June 30, 2007, 9am - 5pm. Registration
      online is highly recommended. Registrations at the door will be
      accepted as space allows.

      7pm - Crystal Cove Auditorium (free and open to the public) Jason &
      deMarco in Concert! www.jasonanddemarco.com

      Sunday, July 1, 2007 - Optional worship at a local welcoming &
      affirming church.

      More events and housing options TBA

      Soul Force's page announcing the conference: http://www.soulforce.org/
      article/1226









      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • greenakakay07
      I thought I would just paste this in for more info :http://www.soulforce.org/article/1226 Home National Actions 2007 Ex-Gay Survivor Conf. News Apr. 22 -
      Message 2 of 2 , Apr 29, 2007
      • 0 Attachment
        I thought I would just paste this in for more
        info :http://www.soulforce.org/article/1226
        Home > National Actions > 2007 > Ex-Gay Survivor Conf.

        News
        Apr. 22 - Equality Ride Moves Students at Cedarville University
        Apr. 19 - President of Yellowstone Baptist College Rejects Visitors
        to Campus; Equality Riders Pursue Dialogue on Faith and Sexuality
        Apr. 18 - Equality Ride Visits Gordon College; Members of Nationwide
        Journey of Gay and Straight Young Adult Leaders Dialogue about Anti-
        gay Policy
        Apr. 17 - Brigham Young University Revises Policy on Sexuality;
        Discriminatory Policy Revisted After Soulforce Equality Riders Visit
        Apr. 16 - Eight Arrested at BYU, Two From Church of Latter-Day Saints
        Apr. 16 - Equality Ride Written into Congressional Record and Honored
        by the City of New York
        News Archive

        A thoughtful response to the Exodus International Conference
        WHY
        On June 26 - July 1, 2007, the Annual Exodus International Conference
        will be in Irvine, California, to promote the false message that gay,
        lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people are disordered,
        sinful, and in need of change.
        In response, Soulforce, BeyondExGay.com, and the LGBT Resource Center
        at the University of California-Irvine are proud to present an
        interactive, community-building conference featuring the powerful
        stories of those who have had ex-gay experiences, but now understand
        that their sexual orientation or gender identity can be lived in ways
        that are loving and life-affirming.
        WHO
        This conference is for everyone. If you want to stand in peaceful
        solidarity to lovingly confront the damaging consequences of the ex-
        gay movement - this conference is for you. If you have ever been
        through an ex-gay experience or been damaged by the message that God
        does not love and affirm you - this conference is for you. If your
        child, partner or friend has been through a "change" ministry - this
        conference is for you. If you are confused about the Bible and
        homosexuality, currently in an ex-gay program, or thinking about
        trying to change who you are - this conference is for you. If you are
        in town to attend the Exodus Conference - the Ex-Gay Survivor's
        Conference is definitely for you! Wherever you are on your journey -
        you are welcome at our conference.
        WHAT
        Exodus and its affiliated organizations often use personal stories of
        transformation to market their programs. These stories are also used -
        - implicitly and explicitly -- to justify political opposition to
        LGBT equality.
        By sharing our stories, survivors of ex-gay experiences can become a
        powerful force for social justice. We can create a more honest
        picture of ex-gay programs, reveal the societal pressures that
        influence people to seek change and expose the cynical exploitation
        of ex-gay success stories for political purposes.
        The Ex-Gay Survivor's Conference will offer opportunities and
        resources to help you share stories, practice speaking to the media,
        and reflect on how your story can be used to make a difference. You
        will also be given opportunities to record your own experiences
        through film and on the web.
        Schedule of Events
        Click here for the schedule
        Registration
        Register here for the Ex-Gay Survivor's Conference ($40 registration
        fee - but no one turned away for lack of funds)
        Hotel Accommodation Information
        Doubletree Hotel Irvine Spectrum
        90 Pacifica Avenue
        Irvine, CA 92618
        telephone: 1-949-471-8888
        fax: 1-949-471-8600Ask for the Soulforce special deluxe guest room
        rate of $105.00 Standard/$125.00 Executive Level per night Friday -
        Sunday single or double occupancy stay (Executive Level Upgraded
        Amenities include: Full American Breakfast Buffet Coupons for two
        people, Wine Vouchers for two people, bathrobes, bottled water, high
        speed internet access, turndown service with chocolates). This
        special Soulforce room rate includes:
        Self-parking fee of $7.00 per night waived
        Courtesy roundtrip shuttle service to University of California Irvine
        at a nominal fee of $3 per person each way
        Complimentary roundtrip airport shuttle to John Wayne/Orange County
        Airport
        Complimentary roundtrip shuttle service to the Irvine Spectrum
        Entertainment Center, host to 21 Edwards Cinema's, more than 20
        eateries and 50 cutting-edge retail stores
        Outdoor swimming pool, whirlpool, and fitness center
        A warm welcome and Doubletree's Chocolate Chip Cookies upon arrival
        Note: When making reservations online be sure to use
        the "Group/Convention Code" of SFI.
        Speaker Bios
        Click here to read the speaker bios.
        Questions
        If you have a question that was not covered in the information
        provided above, you can contact Paige Schilt, Soulforce's Media
        Director, at paige@....
        Printable version E-mail this article

        close
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        --- In exexgayministry@yahoogroups.com, Peterson Toscano <p2son@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > Hi, I know that you have shown interest in t the ex-gay movement
        and
        > particularly about those of us who have survived harmful ex-gay
        > experiences. Below is a press release about two new resources for
        > survivors--a web site and a national conference in June that will
        be
        > a direct response to the Exodus ex-gay conference.
        > We are very excited about these developments.
        > The full press release is posted at my blog (copy and paste
        > www.a_musing.blogspot.com) Please feel free to let others know
        about
        > this news.
        > Let me know if you have any questions.
        > Peterson
        >
        > Peterson Toscano
        > Theatrical Performance Activist
        > www.petersontoscano.com
        > SOULFORCE PRESS RELEASE: April 2, 2007
        >
        > For Immediate Release
        >
        > Contact: Paige Schilt, Media Director
        >
        > Cell: 512-659-1771
        >
        > paige@...
        >
        > Peterson Toscano, Beyondexgay.com
        > Cell: 860.680.0639
        > email: peterson@...
        >
        > (Austin, TX)â€"Survivors of ex-gay programs can take advantage of
        two
        > new resources this week. Beyondexgay.com, an online community for
        > those who are healing from ex-gay experiences, will go live
        today.
        > Simultaneously, online registration will begin for The
        Survivor’s
        > Conference: Beyond Ex-gay, a face-to-face event scheduled for June
        29-
        > July 1, and sponsored by beyondexgay.com and Soulforce.
        >
        > Online registration is now available for The Survivor’s
        Conference:
        > Beyond Ex-gay, a face-to-face event scheduled for June 29th
        through
        > July 1st, sponsored by beyondexgay.com and Soulforce.
        >
        > Recent events have brought national attention to the existence of
        > programs intended to modify same-sex desires. While much of that
        > attention has focused on whether sexual orientation is subject to
        > change, beyondexgay.com and The Survivor’s Conference are the
        first
        > efforts to move beyond that debate in order to focus on the
        community
        > of “survivors”â€"people who feel they have experienced more
        harm
        > than benefits from ex-gay programs.
        >
        > “We use the term ‘survivor’ because we want to emphasize the
        > very real psychological trauma that these programs can cause, and
        > also because we want to highlight the strength of the men and
        women
        > who, in spite of enormous pressures, come to accept themselves as
        > they are,” says Jeff Lutes, a practicing psychotherapist and
        > Executive Director of Soulforce (www.soulforce.org).
        >
        > The creators of beyondexgay.com (www.beyondexgay.com), Peterson
        > Toscano and Christine Bakke, talked to hundreds of fellow ex-gay
        > survivors. What they heard, again and again, was that ex-gay
        > experiences brought inner turmoil, confusion and shame.
        >
        > Many survivors acknowledge that some good came of their ex-gay
        > journey. “We grew to understand our sexuality better and in some
        > cases even overcame life-controlling problems,” says Toscano, but
        he
        > is quick to point out that the harm most survivors experience far
        > outweighs the help they receive. The consensus of the major
        medical
        > and mental health organizations is that homosexuality is not a
        > disorder and, therefore, does not need to be cured. The American
        > Psychological Association identifies “depression, anxiety, and
        self-
        > destructive behavior” among the possible risks associated with ex-

        > gay therapies.
        >
        > Toscano spent 17 years and over $30,000 on three continents
        > attempting to change or at least contain his unwanted same-sex
        > attractions. He ultimately endured two years at the Love in Action
        > residential ex-gay program in Memphis, TN.
        >
        > “In the end I was still very gay, but also depressed, isolated
        and
        > nearly faithless,” he says.
        >
        > Toscano, now a Christian Quaker, has since created a one-person
        > comedy about his ex-gay experiences and has presented Doin' Time
        in
        > the Homo No Mo Halfway House and his other work throughout North
        > America, Europe, West Africa and the Caribbean. In spring 2005,
        Bakke
        > contacted Toscano after attending one of his performances.
        >
        > Christine Bakke herself spent more than 4 years trying to change
        her
        > orientation. She moved to Denver in 1998 to become ex-gay and
        > participated in a program affiliated with Exodus International,
        the
        > largest network of ex-gay ministries. In 2003 she realized that
        while
        > she had changed in many areas, her sexual orientation remained the
        > same. Bakke’s story will be featured in the May issue of
        Glamour,
        > which hit newsstands April 10. Toscano will appear as a guest on
        the
        > Tyra Banks Show on April 12.
        >
        > Bakke and Toscano continued to dialogue, and last spring they
        decided
        > it was time to reach out to more ex-gay survivors through the
        > Internet. Together with assistance from their friend, Steve Boese,
        > they form the perfect team: Bakkeâ€"a graphic designer,
        Toscanoâ€"a
        > writer, and Boeseâ€"a web guru and founder of MyOrgHost
        > (www.myorghost.net).
        >
        > Beyondexgay.com currently features diverse narratives from ex-gay
        > survivors. It also provides an array of resources, including
        original
        > articles and art by survivors, as well as links to other sites.
        Soon
        > survivors will have the option to join the community and create a
        > profile. Through an on-line form, they will document and share
        their
        > own ex-gay experiences. Their responses will then be added to a
        > database that will track the variety and scope of ex-gay
        experiences
        > endured by survivors.
        >
        > "The ex-gay experience is unique in many ways. No one understands
        it
        > better than those of us who have been through it. Creating a
        communal
        > space for ex-gay survivors to tell their stories allows us to
        share
        > what led us into an ex-gay lifestyle and ways we have been able to
        > recover from it,” says Bakke.
        >
        > Creating a space for survivors to come together and share their
        > stories was also the impetus behind The Survivor’s Conference:
        > Beyond Ex-Gay. The conference, which will take place June 29th
        > through July 1st at the University of California-Irvine, is co-
        > sponsored by the LGBT Resource Center at UC Irvine.
        >
        > “We chose Irvine because the annual Exodus Freedom Conference is
        > coming to Irvine that week,” says Lutes. “For Soulforce,
        > beyondexgay.com, and the LGBT Resource Center at UC Irvine, it is
        > very important to provide a positive response to the Exodus
        message
        > that gay men and lesbians are sinful and disordered.”
        >
        > If you want to stand in peaceful solidarity to lovingly confront
        the
        > damaging consequences of the ex-gay movement â€" this conference
        is
        > for you. If you have ever been through an ex-gay experience or
        been
        > damaged by the message that God does not love and affirm you â€"
        this
        > conference is for you. If you are confused about the Bible and
        > homosexuality, currently in an ex-gay program, or thinking about
        > trying to change who you are â€" this conference is for you.
        >
        >
        > Schedule of Events
        >
        > Friday, June 29, 2007, 7pm - 9pm, Crystal Cove Auditorium (free
        and
        > open to the public): Doing time in the Homo No Mo Halfway House:
        How
        > I survived the Ex-gay Movement - a performance by Peterson
        Toscano,
        > www.homonomo.com
        >
        > Jason and deMarcoSaturday, June 30, 2007, 9am - 5pm. Registration
        > online is highly recommended. Registrations at the door will be
        > accepted as space allows.
        >
        > 7pm - Crystal Cove Auditorium (free and open to the public) Jason
        &
        > deMarco in Concert! www.jasonanddemarco.com
        >
        > Sunday, July 1, 2007 - Optional worship at a local welcoming &
        > affirming church.
        >
        > More events and housing options TBA
        >
        > Soul Force's page announcing the conference:
        http://www.soulforce.org/
        > article/1226
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
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