From Barbados to Zimbabwe, speakers at next month’s free online Intimate Conviction 2 conference will focus on what more needs to be done, especially by Christian churches, to put an end to dozens of countries’ laws against same-sex intimacy.
The online event will build on the work done at the first Intimate Conviction conference, held in Jamaica in October 2017. It was originally planned for April in Barbados, but was delayed and then moved online because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Organizers say that the gathering “will continue the discussion that was begun in 2017 with a specific focus on the Global South. This virtual event will assess the progress that has been made and will look at what more needs to be done to ensure that same-sex intimacy is justly decriminalized.”
The four keynote speakers will be:
- Bishop Francis Alleyne, the Roman Catholic bishop of Georgetown, Guyana;
- The Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak, Black liberation theologian and global human rights activist, South Africa;
- Prof. Edward Greene, chancellor, University of Guyana, former UN Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS for the Caribbean; and
- Victor Madrigal-Borloz, the U.N.’s independent expert on sexual orientation and gender identity, Costa Rica.
Scheduled speakers include religious leaders from Barbados, the British Virgin Islands, Canada, the Cayman Islands, Guyana, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Mexico, Nigeria, the Philippines, South Africa, the United States, and Zimbabwe.
Secular leaders and LGBTQ+ rights activists who are scheduled to speak come from the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Costa Rica, Dominica, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the United Kingdom.
For more information and to register at no charge, visit the conference’s page at the HIV Legal Network.
The conference schedule and list of planned speakers is below, as presented on the conference’s website. All times are Eastern Standard Time (GMT -5).
A list of speakers, their titles and photos is also available.
Agenda: Day 1
9:00 – 9:10 Welcome: Fr. Clifford Hall, Host Pastor
9:10– 9:25 Keynote1: Bishop Francis Alleyne – Catholic Bishop of Georgetown, Guyana
9:25 – 9:40 Keynote 2: Victor Madrigal-Borloz – UN Independent expert on sexual orientation and gender identity
9:40 – 10:20 Panel 1: The Church and Decriminalization (Barbados)
Rev. Clifford Hall – Anglican Church of Barbados, Retired Lecturer in Criminal Law University of the West Indies, Cave Hill.
Rev. Ian Rock – St. George’s Episcopal Church, British Virgin Islands
Alexa Hoffmann – Trans Advocacy and Agitation, Barbados.
10:20 – 10:30 BREAK
10:30– 11:40 Panel 2: The Church and Decriminalization (The Bahamas, Belize, Jamaica)
Natino Thompson – Bahamian writer, pioneer, artist and activist
Caleb Orozco – Executive Director, United Belize Advocacy Movement
Rev. Canon Garth Minott – Anglican Church of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands
Prof. George Garwood – Professor of World Religions
Dr. Danielle Roper – Jamaican gender and sexuality academic
Kristina Neil – Policy and Research Officer, WE Change Jamaica. WE Change Jamaica
11:40 to 12:00 Panel 3: The Church and Decriminalization (Latin America)
Jim Hodgson – former Latin America/Caribbean program coordinator with the United Church of Canada.
Carlos Navarro – Mexico Network of Rainbow Catholics (REDCAM)
Agenda: Day 2
9:00 – 9:10 Welcome & Recap of Day 1: Fr. Clifford Hall, Host Pastor
9:10 – 9:30 Keynote 2: Dr. Edward Greene, Chancellor University of Guyana, Former UN Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in the Caribbean.
9:30 – 10:30 Panel 4: The Church and Decriminalization (Eastern and Southern Caribbean)
Rev. Patricia Sheerattan-Bisnauth – Presbyterian Church minister, Chief Executive Officer Caribbean Family Planning Association
Telford Layne – Seventh Day Adventist Church Guyana
Luke Sinnette – Lead Social Worker, Friends for Life, Trinidad and Tobago
Valini Leitch – Homophobia Education Coordinator, SASOD, Guyana
Daryl Philip – Coordinator, Minority Rights Dominica
10:30 – 10:40 BREAK
10:40– 11:20 Panel 5: The Church and Decriminalization (Asia)
Rev. Christopher Rajkumar – Priest with the Church of South India and former head of the National Ecumenical Forum of Gender and Sexual Diversities (NEFGSD) of the National Council of Churches India.
Pearl Wong – Founder of Hong Kong Queer Theology Academy.
Rev. Alfred Candid M. Jaropillo – United Church of Christ in the Philippines
11:20 – 12:00 Panel 6 Some Global North Experiences
Rev. Michael Blair – United Church of Canada (Canada)
Rev. Dr. Brent Hawkes – Rainbow Faith and Freedom (Canada)
Jayne Ozanne – Ozanne Foundation (UK)
Agenda: Day 3
9:00 – 9:10 Welcome & Recap Day 2: Fr. Clifford Hall, Host Pastor
9:10 – 9:30 Keynote 3: Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak, South Africa.
9:30 – 10:30 Panel 7: The Church and Decriminalization (Africa)
Rev Nokuthula Dhladhla – Board member Global Interfaith Network – South Africa
David Ochar – Pastor at Cosmopolitan Affirming Church – Kenya
Dr. Nontando Hadebe – Professor at St. Augustine (Catholic) College – South Africa
Ngozi Nwosu-Juba – Interfaith Diversity Network of West Africa. Nigeria.
Prof. Ezra Chitando -Professor of Religious Studies in the Department of Religious Studies, Classics and Philosophy of the University of Zimbabwe.
10:30- 10:40 BREAK
10:40 – 12:00 Closing Remarks & Vote of Thanks
Rev. Winnie Varghese – Priest for Justice and Reconciliation at Trinity Church in New York City (USA)
Erica Lim – Program Officer Arcus Foundation
Richard Elliott – Executive Director, HIV Legal Network
Very Rev. Sean Major-Campbell – Chair, Intimate Conviction Series
Maurice Tomlinson – Coordinator, Intimate Conviction Conference Series.
- Church leaders target anti-gay laws; conservatives protest (
- Taking aim at anti-LGBT laws dating back to Henry VIII (October 2017, 76crimes.com)
- Archive of this blog’s articles about the Intimate Conviction conference.
This article was revised Oct. 28, 2020, to list the conference’s four keynote speakers. Previously, the article named only two. It also now specifies that Ngozi Nwosu-Juba, chair of the Interfaith Diversity Network of West Africa, is from Nigeria. The location of St. George’s Episcopal Church was corrected; it is in the British Virgin Islands.
More changes are likely as the conference approaches.