hard to believe that it is over a month now since I was in Hong Kong
|Evening meeting University of Hong Kong chapel|
you had the feeling that you were really meant to do something? That's the
feeling I got when I first heard about the Amplify Asia 2012
Conference. The amazing time in Hong Kong certainly confirmed that. Historic
is a word I would use to describe the conference.
Asia 2012 was the largest gathering of Asian Affirming churches to date. Much
of Christianity within Asia is very very conservative so these people have a
great deal to contend with including laws that prohibit any same sex activity
(in some countries), a culture in some countries that rejects same sex
orientation, strong family pressures to conform and a breed of Christianity
which has a long way to go beyond the old 'abomination' belief. Some of these
churches are the only completely affirming congregations in the entire country.
you can possibly imagine how encouraging it was for these people to join 300
others and gain insight and help with the challenges that lie before them.
was very touched by the sincerity of those attending the conference and moved
to tears more than once. It was also
quite amazing to see that nearly 50% of those attending were under 30 years of
age. The Asian gay Christian movement
whilst small is young and vibrant.
|Workshop "Being an Ambassador & Bridge Builder"|
little extract I received after the conference gives you some idea.
"Anthony, thanks a million for your presentation. You made me cry when
you said 100 Revs in Oz wrote and signed to apologise to the GLBT community.
THAT is exactly what I've been yearning for some 40 YEARS . . . (I am turning
50 this year). I could fight staunchly till my final breath but that is not
what I want. I want true and full reconciliation in love."
"I was having dinner with friends the other evening and telling them how much I was touched by your workshop. I'm still processing some of the things that took place in my life. I never expected it to be such an impact! "
time with Bishop Gene Robinson (YouTube)
and Bishop Yvette Flunder from the US was invaluable. Bishop Robinson is such a
gentle, sincere and approachable man whose heartfelt messages touched all the conference.
|Bishop Gene Robinson|
Bishop Yvette Flunder (YouTube) is a
third generation Pentecostal, African American, lesbian and of course a woman. Experiencing life on the outer in so
many ways has given her incredible insights and perspectives on the
my time at the conference I now have contacts with church leaders in Hong Kong,
mainland China, Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, Korea, Philippines.
Wonderful response to
the appeal for support
think one of the most encouraging things about this opportunity was the amazing
financial support I received. Once the newsletter
was sent out I received a donation within 30 minutes. That continued and within
the next five days through donations of $20, $50, $100 and even $1000 the
entire budget was covered. You can probably imagine how encouraging this was
that so many had confidence in me a person and could also see the importance of
supporting this project of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International. Thank you to all those who gave. You will
have received a personal email and report from me already.
Anthony Venn-Brown is a founder of Freedom
2 b[e], Australia’s largest network of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual,
transgender) people from Christian backgrounds and is currently director of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders
International. He is an educator, consultant and commentator on LGBT/faith
issues and been committed to deconstructing
the ‘ex-gay’ myth in Australia. Anthony’s journey from married, high profile
preacher in Australia’s mega-churches to living as an openly gay man is detailed
in his autobiography 'A Life
of Unlearning'. Anthony has been twice voted ‘One of the 25 Most
Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians’ (2007 & 2009) and was one of four
finalists for the 2011 ACON Community Hero Award.
Labels: anthony venn brown, gay christian, gay pentecostal, videos