Lunch & Learn:
Caring for Families of LGBTQ+ Youth
When a child or young adult comes out as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, it can put a strain on the entire family. Parents and other caregivers often feel surprised, fearful, confused, responsible, sorrowful, or disappointed while youth fear being rejected or misunderstood. Pastors are often the first point of care for these families in crisis. As you work to be an effective minister and moral guide, you might wonder what resources will truly help them without leading them astray from their faith. How can you attend to their spiritual, emotional, and physical needs as they navigate painful questions, difficult decisions, family conflict, and spiritual concerns?
LOVEboldly, in partnership with Lighthouse Youth and Family Services, invites you to join us for this lunch and learn opportunity, engaging your big questions and pastoral concerns, and providing resources that can help you care well for families in crisis. Join us for a discussion on how to navigate the coming-out experience thoughtfully, helping your families keep their faith and families intact. For more information or to register, email .
Melissa Meyer is a nurse, trainer and organizational leader. Melissa has worked with youth and youth-serving professionals in juvenile justice, drug treatment, mental health care, schools, disability services and health care for over 25 years. Now she shares her talents with Safe and Supported, a project of Lighthouse Youth and Family Services, focused on developing and implementing innovative strategies to prevent and end LGBTQ youth homelessness in Hamilton
County by 2020.
Heidi Weaver-Smith is the president and founder of LOVEboldly. Compelled by Christ's interactions with marginalized folks in the Gospels and disturbed by the stories of LGBTQ+ friends who had been treated poorly by Christians, Heidi founded LOVEboldly in 2011. Through her leadership, Heidi empowers LGBTQ+ and straight Christians to step towards loving one another boldly and equips Christians to engage with dignity and civility in the polarizing conversations surrounding faith and sexuality. Heidi has completed some seminary coursework at Asbury Theological Seminary and has been participating in dialogues with traditionally-minded Christians and the LGBTQ+ community since 2008. She lives with her husband, Steven, and her young daughter, Felicity, in Columbus, OH.