LGBTQ2 Spirituality Conference
July 22-24, 2022
Welcoming the LGBTQ2 community, friends, family and allies.
Spiritpride 2022: The Stories We Tell
July 22 – 24, 2022
SpiritPride is an LGBTQ2A+ affirming event that gathers communities who want to celebrate,
share and find a place to explore spirituality and LGBTQ2A+ Identity. This annual conference, now in it’s 6th year, is an important place of healing for many who have been told they can’t reconcile their faith or spirituality and affirm their gender and sexual identity too.
The event is a combination of speakers, panels, breakout groups, workshops, and live music, and runs July 22-24. This year’s theme is “The Stories We Tell” and focuses on the power of storytelling. What do we choose to share, how do we speak about ourselves to the various communities in our life, what stories do we tell, and why?
Our opening night event will include a Queer poetry night and DJ music reflecting a range of presenters from the trans, nonbinary, indigenous and BIPOC communities.We have two outstanding keynote speakers who will share their stories as they give us new perspectives and models of understanding. We are also convening a panel of speakers who have a strong faith life who will share how that has been either reconciled or augmented by their LGBTQ identity. This panel will feature Christian, Jewish, Sikh, Hindu, and Twospirit speakers.
The conference opens on Friday evening with a Café-style event, including the smooth vibes of DJ Whysotroubled (Danice Carlson-Malena) and featuring readings from 3 exceptional Canadian poets. There will be lots of time to mix and mingle with other conference delegates and speakers.
Saturday will once again be filled with keynote speakers, an inter-faith panel, break-out sessions, and an evening of amazing and inspiring music & dance at our LGBTQ+ refugee benefit concert Sanctuary, featuring Trey Pearson!
Sunday events begin with a morning service with St. Andrews-Wesley United, followed by a park picnic/social. The conference will conclude with an early evening Labrynth walk followed by an eveing Candleight & Music service.
Conference venue:Andrews Wesley United Church – 1022 Nelson St., Vancouver (Corner of Burrard).
Livestream: For those of you who are not in the Vancouver area, we will be livestreaming several sessions and the music night on Saturday July 23rd! Live-streamed sessions include both keynote speakers and the interfaith panel. See our registration section to purchase tickets. You will be sent a private viewing link the day before the event.
This event is made possible by our partnership with other local LGBTQ faith organizations, churches, and partners.
The website is being updated continuously as more details are confirmed.
Reverend Dr. Cheri DiNovo, C.M. is an ordained United Church queer minister, politician and staunch activist for LGBTQ rights, Cheri went from living on the streets as a teenager to performing the first legalized same-sex marriage registered in Canada in 2001. From rights for queer parents to banning conversion therapy, her story (told in the newly released book ‘The Queer Evangelist’), will inspire people (queer or ally) to not only resist the system—but change it. She is currently the minister at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre for Faith, Justice, and the Arts. Cheri is a Member of the Order of Canada, recognized for her contributions to provincial politics and for her lifelong advocacy of social justice. As the former Member of Provincial Parliament for Parkdale–High Park in Ontario, Cheri passed into law more pro-LGBTQ2+ legislation than anyone in Canadian history.
Dr. Rolf R. Nolasco, Jr., ThD. isProfessor of Spiritual Formation & Pastoral Theology at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary, and Director of both their Pastoral Care & Counseling Degree Program and Institute for Spiritual Formation. He is the author of God’s Beloved Queer: Identity, Spirituality, and Practice (2019) in which he re-centers the conversation back to what anchors our identity and inspires our ways of being, living, and loving. Drawing from a wide range of disciplines—pastoral theology, spirituality, counseling psychology, affective neuroscience, anthropology— Rolf offers a more nuanced description of what it means, as queer folks, to be sacred icons of God like everyone else, offering multifarious windows into the spacious, gratuitous, and transforming love of God. Rolf will be sharing themes from his upcoming book Hearts Ablaze: Parables for the Queer Soul (October 2022) in which he shares meditations addressing the spiritual needs of queer Christians, taking a new look at ten selected parables of Jesus, expanding the scope of interpretation of each story to highlight God’s extravagant welcome of all people.
Friday July 22, 2022
5:30 – 6:30pm Registration
6:30 – 9:00pm SpritPride Café – Conference opening, mix and mingle, DJ and Poetry readings by queer artists
Saturday July 23, 2022
7:45 – 9:00 am Registration, Coffee and snacks
9:15 – 9:45am Opening, welcome, and overview, Land Acknowledgement
9:45 – 11:00am Keynote Speaker: Cheri DiNovo, with Q&A / Discussion
11:00 – 11:30 Break / Meet & Greet
11:30 – 12:45pm Interfaith Panel/ Q&A: Our Stories: Interfaith stories of diversity and inclusion
12:45- 1:45 pm Lunch provided
1:45 – 1:55 pm Intro and Morning recap
2:00 – 3:15pm Keynote Speaker: Rolf Nolasco, with Q&A / Discussion
3:15 – 3:45 pm Break
3:45 –4:45 pm Workshop, Spiritual Direction & Breakout Groups options: Trey Pearson, My Story & Music; Smokii Sumac, Our Stories/A Creative Journey; DJ O Show, Film Biography screening; Open Discussion/Spiritual Direction Group
4:45 – 5:00 pm Wrap-up/Talkback session
5:00 – 6:45pm Dinner Break (join a group and enjoy a local restaurant!)
7:00 – 9:00pm Sanctuary Music/Dance Evening with Trey Pearson and DJ O Show (Included in conference fee and Open to the public by donation – invite your friends!)
Sunday July 24, 2022
10:00am – 11:30 Sunday Pride Service. Join St Andrews Wesley United Church, a vibrant, inclusive community and a Pride-focused theme and message
1:00 – 4:00pm Picnic in Stanley Park
7:00 – 8:00pm Candlelight & Music Service, with Labyrinth walk
Rev Clare Morgan (they/them) is a cradle Anglican who was ordained to the priesthood in 2016 and served in the parish of St. Philip’s, Dunbar Heights as curate before being called to serve as community director and co-chaplain of Hineni House, an intentional spiritual community of young adults affiliated with St. Margaret’s in the Cedar Cottage neighbourhood in 2017. Clare is also affiliated with the Inayati Sufi community in Vancouver and the wider Pacific Northwest, and has been sharing music among them in sama and zhikr also since 2017. Clare was also licensed as chaplain to St. Jude’s Anglican Home, a Vancouver Coastal Health care facility primarily for people with dementia, and ministered there until October 2021.
Carmel Tanaka (she/her)
JQT Founder & Executive Director
Carmel is a queer neurodivergent Jewpanese woman of colour from Vancouver. She is a community engagement professional and her leadership initiatives include: JQT Vancouver, Genocide Prevention BC and Cross Cultural Walking Tours. JQT Vancouver has its roots in the grassroots committee of Jewish LGBTQ2SIA+ community representatives and Jewish organizations that came together to celebrate the inaugural community-wide Jewish Pride initiative of July 2018. She was named one of Be’chol Lashon’s 7 LGBTQ+ Jews of Color you should know. www.carmeltanaka.cawww.jqtvancouver.ca
Angit Kaur Modaher BSc PT (she/her/they/them)
Outreach Liaison , Sher Vancouver LGBTQ Friends Society
Angit identifies as a Punjabi Sikh woman. She was born in the UK and recently migrated to Canada in 2018. She lives with her wife Joshna in Surrey, BC. She has recently started a role with Sher Vancouver as Outreach Liaison for the Screening for Schools program to showcase the award winning documentary Emergence: Out of the Shadows. Sher Vancouver is a registered charity supporting and delivering programs for LGBTQ+ South Asians and their friends and families. Since coming out to herself 13 years ago she has been navigating the difficult path that any religious queer South Asian has in the past. Angit and her wife married in 2020 amongst their close friends and family.
Friday Night Cafe, Featuring poetry and music
Join is for our opening evening Spiritpride Cafe, featuring accomplished canadian Queer poets, and smooth DJ vibes. Come mix and mingle with other conference attendees and speakers!
Smokii Sumac (Ktunaxa), Two-Spirit Transgender Ktunaxa Author, Academic and Poet is a poet and PhD Candidate in Indigenous Studies at Trent University, where his work centers on the question: how do we come home? His first poetry collection, you are enough: love poems for the end of the world, (Kegedonce Press, 2018) won an Indigenous Voices Award for published poetry, and Smokii has recently been named as a finalist for the Dayne Ogilvie Prize.
Jillian Christmas is the former Artistic Director of Vancouver’s Verses Festival of Words. An educator, organizer, and advocate in the arts community, utilizing an anti-oppressive lens, Jillian has performed and facilitated workshops across North America. The Gospel of Breaking, a poetry collection, is her first book, and she is the 2021 winner of the League of Canadian Poets’ Sheri-D Wilson Golden Beret Award for spoken word poetry. She identifies as queer and won the 2021 Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Canadian writers.
Billeh Nickerson: Born in Halifax and raised in Langley, BC, Billeh Nickerson is the author of four poetry collections—The Asthmatic Glassblower; McPoems; Impact: The Titanic Poems; and Artificial Cherry— and the humour collection Let Me Kiss It Better. He is also co-editor of Seminal: The Anthology of Canada’s Gay Male Poets, and past writer-in-residence at both Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario and Berton House in Dawson City, Yukon. He is the current Chair of the Creative Writing department at Kwantlen Polytechnic University.
Danice Carlson-Malena (Aka DJ Whysoserious)
Danice is passionate about matching the music with stories, events, and brands, and helping elevate an artist’s visibility through strategic connections. She loves mixing inspiring tunes and creating playlists for all occasions. Danice’s favourite music genres are hip hop, RnB, soul and 90s jams and she is an avid audiophile with a very vast and eclectic taste in music. Danice was a hit at Spiritpride 2019 – so we’re so pleased to have her back this year. Follow her on Instagram and Spotify https://linktr.ee/dancevera
Gregg Taylor, Conference Host Gregg is the founder of Spiritpride, Chair of the conference planning committee, and a co-leader of the Word is Out LGBT Spirituality group at St. Andrew’s-Wesley United. Professionally, Gregg is a Registered Clinical Counsellor providing gay affirmative counselling to LGBTQ clients and is a Senior Leader with Family Services of Greater Vancouver and President of their Social Enterprise venture FSEAP, a workplace mental health and wellness service provider. He has authored the counsellor resource Straight Talk on Counselling Gay Clients: A Resource for Straight Counsellors and tells his story of authenticity, vulnerability and coming out in the book The Thought That Changed My Life Forever.
Rev. Rhian Walker
Rhian Walker is Co-Lead Minister at St. Andrew’s-Wesley. She brings a love for nurturing the spiritual development of those around her. She is passionate about new expressions of church and believes in the power of spiritual practice and community to transform the suffering in our communities and our world. She previously served at the lead minister at the Heartwood Community Café, an LGBTQ social enterprise run by Trinity United and is an amateur singer and poet.
Come join us at this year’s music event, Sanctuary Concert/Dance.
Since coming out in 2016, Trey Pearson has been making music that chronicles his life and inner landscape with vulnerability. A story that so many of us have, he puts words to feelings for all those who don’t feel loved or accepted for who they really are. Don’t miss this event, featuring songs from his new second solo album “Somebody You Knew”.
Trey was nominated for a 2017 GLAAD Award for his appearance on The View. Trey has been performing at Pride Festivals across the United States and around the world. He released his debut solo single, “Silver Horizon”, and premiered the music video on Teen Vogue. Billboard Magazine did a feature on Trey for his debut EP and premiered the title track “Love Is Love”.
With his band Everyday Sunday, Trey has sold hundreds of thousands of records and amassed millions of streams. He has scored 5 #1 U.S. singles and 20 Top 10 hits. Check out his music on Youtube and Spotify and you’ll quickly be singing, and dancing, along.
Youth Pass: $20
½ day AM: $40
½ Day PM $40
Online only: Keynotes/Panel Livestream: $45
72 Hours/at door: $80
** for financial assistance, contact us at email@example.com
LGBTQ2 Spirituality Conference
Venue: St. Andrew’s Wesley United Church
100-1022 Nelson Street
Parking available from the lane