Program

Go to:    Friday   •   Saturday  •   Sunday  •   Additional Information  •   Maps & Plans

Friday, September 16

Note: The Conference Hospitality Area will be open on the second floor of the Conference Center from 1:00 PM to 11:00 PM.
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM Executive Committee Meeting    Clark Room
1:00 PM Conference Registration Desk opens    Conference Center, Second Floor 
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM Council of Chapter Representatives    Edison II
4:30 PM Women’s Caucus    Stearns Room
4:30 PM Gamofite Enclave (Gay Mormon Fathers)    Clark Room
4:30 PM People of Color Reception    Capri Room

5:00 PM First Timers’ Reception    Check with registration desk for room location
6:00 PM Welcome Reception    Edison II
   • David Yost
   • F. Joseph Finnigan

Note: The reception will include light refreshments, but not a full dinner. The hotel's restaurant, Great American Grill, is open for dinner 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM. There are other restaurants near the hotel.
6:15 PM Conference Registration Desk closes    Conference Center, Second Floor
After the Welcome Reception Brief initial meeting/practice for those singing in choir    Room to be decided

Saturday, September 17

Note: The Conference Hospitality Area will be open all day on the second floor of the Conference Center.

If you need to obtain your badge and registration packet after 9:00 AM, please contact conference registrar Robert Moore.
6:30 AM - 7:30 PM Conference Registration Desk Open    Conference Center, Second Floor
7:30 AM - 8:45 PM Opening Session    Edison I

   • Breakfast
   • Introduction of 2011 candidates for Affirmation president
   • Jill McCrory    President, Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists
8:45 AM - 9:00 AM Conference Registration Desk Open    Conference Center, Second Floor
9:00 AM - 9:50 AM Workshop Session I

Note: All the Saturday morning workshop rooms are located on the second floor of the Conference Center.

Families and Acceptance Affirmation’s Generations: A Timely Dialogue Future of Affirmation
Johnson Room Carter Room Clark Room
Sam Wolfe, Moderator
• John Behn
• Brad Carmack
• David Baker  
Fred Bowers, Moderator Randall Thacker, Moderator
10:00 AM - 10:50 AM Workshop Session II

Gay Mormon Film and Drama Future of Affirmation The Mormon Church: Do I Stay or Do I Go?
Johnson Room Carter Room Clark Room
Jerry Argetsinger Joshua Behn, Moderator Mary England, Moderator
• Jill McCrory
• Michael Schuenemeyer
• F. Joseph Finnegan
• John Behn
11:05 AM – 11:55 AM Workshop Session III

Is the Law of Chastity Relevant for LGBT Mormons? Using Volunteers and Publicity to Build Chapters Transitions: Defining Moments in Our Lives
Johnson Room Carter Room Clark Room
David Baker and Hugo Salinas, Moderators Fred Bowers, Facilitator Alma Smith
12:30 PM Kirtland Tour

12:30 PM Lunch (on your own) and free time in Cleveland

The hotel is a short walk from entertainment, restaurants, theater, parks, universities, and the world famous Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (open till 5:30 PM). If you are not going to Kirtland on Saturday, you can visit some of the following: Cleveland State University, the museums at University Circle, the stores and restaurants by Public Square, and the East Fourth Street entertainment district.
5:30 PM - 6:15 PM Choir Rehearsal for Sunday devotional   Room to be decided

6:00 PM Candidates’ Reception   Armington

All are invited for fellowship and to meet with the candidates for 2011 Affirmation President
7:00 PM Affirmation Annual Awards Banquet    Edison I

Speakers:
   • Sam Wolfe
   • Brad Carmack

Entertainment
Sunday, September 18

Note: Sunday breakfast is on your own.
7:45 AM First bus leaves for Kirtland    Hotel Lobby

This bus is for choir members, those attending the early testimony meeting, those who may have special mobility needs, and those who have luggage and are going directly to the Tower City station on Public Square in the 1:50 PM bus.

Bus doors close at 8:00 AM
8:30 AM - 9:30 AM Choir Practice    Kirtland Temple

Note: No photography or recording is allowed inside the Temple. Please do not wear shorts or sandals into the Temple. Restrooms and luggage storage are available in the Temple Visitor Center.
9:30 AM - 10:30 AM Sharing of Testimonies and Spiritual Experiences    Kirtland Temple
9:30 AM Second bus leaves for Kirtland    Hotel Lobby
11:00 AM Devotional Service    Kirtland Temple

Note: No photography or recording is allowed inside the Temple. Please do not wear shorts or sandals into the Temple. Restrooms and luggage storage are available in the Temple Visitor Center.
12:30 PM Closing Luncheon    Community of Christ Meeting House

   • Light Lunch
   • Time allotted for Affirmation business
   • Announcement of 2012 Conference
1:50 PM First bus leaves for Cleveland    Community of Christ Meeting House

Bus doors close at 2:00 PM. This bus will stop at the Tower City station on Public Square for those who need to catch afternoon flights and will then continue to the Hilton Garden Inn.
2:45 PM Final bus leaves for Cleveland    Community of Christ Visitor Center

Bus doors close at 3:00 PM. This bus will go directly to the Hilton Garden Inn.

Additional Information about Conference Sessions and Workshops

People of Color and Allies Group

The Affirmation: Gay and Lesbian Mormons People of Color and Allies Group is a group of self-identified people of color and allies gathered to explore multiple identities and the intersections of race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, and LDS faith. When individuals "speak their truth" and affirm their identities, it can inspire others. This is a multi-racial people-of-color space and so issues facing people of color within and between communities will be discussed. This year's session will focus on how Affirmation can attract more people of color and increase the number of people participating in the group.

Families and Acceptance

Sam Wolfe, Moderator

The fundamental components of the Church are individual and ward families. As families increase in understanding and acceptance of LGBT family members, the Church itself assumes those characteristics. Join a discussion relating to the way to greater acceptance within families with a panel of three active church members. Panelists include a father of a gay son -- the father is a leader of his high priest group and has served in many callings including bishop; a recent BYU graduate and straight ally who has written and spoken extensively concerning greater inclusion of LGBT Mormons; and, a blogger who has been featured in film and news stories relating to LGBT Mormons and who has forged a place within his Mormon community as a self-affirming gay man.

Affirmation's Generations: A Timely Dialogue

Fred Bowers, Moderator

This session will feature an intergenerational panel to showcase the different views of LGBT Mormonism. Attendees will gain insight into how LGBT Mormons across the generations view leadership, service, and other aspects of LGBT and Mormon life. The panel session will center around four panelists representing the following generations: Matures (greater than 61 years old), Baby Boomer (42 to 60 years old), Generation X (27 to 41 years old), and Millennial (less than 26 years old).

Future of Affirmation

Randall Thacker, Moderator, Session I
Joshua Behn Moderator, Session II


The purpose of this session is to generate a discussion about the future of Affirmation and learn about what you believe its focus should be in the coming years. How do you believe Affirmation can best serve the LGBTQ Mormon community? What do you think are the things Affirmation should START, STOP, and KEEP doing? These provide two unique opportunities to engage Affirmation leadership.

Gay Mormon Film and Drama

Jerry Argetsinger

Since 1959 a total of 23 plays and films have been professionally produced that include Gay Mormon themes and/or characters. Some of these have won two Pulitzer Prizes, three Tony Awards for "Best Play" and numerous other awards. This session will discuss a brief history of this mushrooming phenomenon and describe emerging themes and significant insights in these productions. Several scenes will be "performed" to illustrate significant dramatic moments from these scripts. Copies of every script will also be on display.

The Mormon Church: Do I Stay or Do I Go?

Mary England, Moderator

Rev. Jill McCrory, Affirming and Welcoming Baptists, MCC
Rev. Michael Schuenemeyer, United Church of Christ
F. Joseph Finnegan, MA, Roman Catholic
John Behn, Former LDS Bishop

What will you do when the LDS Church accepts LGBT members into full fellowship in the Church? Will you go back, stay as far from the Church as possible, or something in between? This panel discussion will feature church leaders from groups who have already been through this journey, and groups who are just starting to navigate their way through, including Affirming and Welcoming Baptists, United Church of Christ, Roman Catholics, and the LDS Church.

Is the Law of Chastity Relevant for LGBT Mormons? A Discussion of Sexual Ethics

David Baker and Hugo Salinas, Moderators

The Law of Chastity is a gospel principle that blocks the participation of LGBT Saints in LDS communities. Join Affirmation webmaster Hugo Salinas, who’s legally married to his same-sex spouse, and openly gay, active LDS member David Baker in a lively discussion about whether the Law of Chastity could be (1) expanded to include LGBT Saints or (2) drastically reassessed as a set of guiding principles rather than a law.

Affirmation Leadership Training: Using Volunteers and Publicity to Build Chapters

Fred Bowers, Facilitator

This year's Affirmation Leadership Training will focus on practical ways to engage volunteers/potential volunteers and use of electronic media to publicize Affirmation chapter activities. The use of volunteer recruiting sites and writing volunteer job descriptions will be covered. The use of free online forums to advertise chapter events will be discussed.

Transitions: Defining Moments in Our Lives

Alma “Al” Smith, Moderator

In the course of our lives, certain experiences stand out as being defining times of transition. Facilitator Al Smith will encourage participants to reflect on times of transition within their own lives and invite them to share with one another some of the lessons they have learned along the journey of life.

Kirtland Tour

Board: 12:30 PM. Depart: 12:45 PM. Return: 4:15 PM.

Optional activity, requires pre-registration or sign-up at conference registration desk; limited space available; includes box lunch; cost: $20.00.

Meet at the Hotel Lobby.Boarding will begin at 12:30 PM. Buses will leave at 12:45 PM from the hotel and arrive in Kirtland around to 1:15 PM. Box lunch served on bus. You will have from 1:15 PM to 4:15 PM to enjoy up to three activities in Kirtland: Boarding will begin at 4:15 p.m. at Historic Kirtland. The buses will then pick up the remaining passengers at the Kirtland Temple at 4:35. Arrival to Cleveland will be around 5:15 p.m.

Advocating for the Dignity of LGBTQ People

Sam Wolfe, Speaker

More than a year ago, Sam Wolfe left a corporate law firm in Manhattan to help launch the Southern Poverty Law Center's LGBTQ Rights Project based in Montgomery, Alabama. Sam will share some of his experiences as a civil-rights attorney including about a current high-profile case that has captured national headlines.

Limited Understanding: Light and Knowledge in LDS Generation Next

Brad Carmack, Keynote Speaker

The language of the title comes from Bruce McConkie's apologetics after the lifting of the priesthood ban. Brad will talk about his story of advocacy, switching his views on homosexuality and same-sex marriage 180 degrees, and his fear of losing diplomas at BYU. He will discuss why he is optimistic about the place of homosexuals in coming decades in the Church because of the understanding of the rising generation. Brad will talk about progress in the Salt Lake City area and at BYU through a group called USGA (Understanding Same-Gender Attraction) and in Utah County through PFLAG.

Sharing of Testimonies and Spiritual Experiences

Attendees interested in having the opportunity to share their testimonies and spiritual experiences with fellow LGBTQ Mormons and Allies in the Kirtland Temple generated the idea for this session. The format for this will be one of open sharing of brief testimonies and spiritual experiences that are faith promoting. Joanna Brooks will be facilitating the sharing.


Maps and Plans



From the airport to the Hotel    Download
  • From the airport, get on Rapid Transit (Red Line)

  • Get off at Tower City - Public Square

  • Call Hotel (216-658-6400) for a free shuttle

  • Use the Euclid exit
Tower City - Exit on Euclid
Tower City Exit on Euclid - Enlarge
View this location on Google Maps


Conference Center & Hotel - First Floor    Download

Conference Center - Second Floor    Download

LDS-owned Historic Kirtland    Download.

Visitor Center (lower left), Kirtland Temple (center), and Community of Christ Meeting House (upper right)   Download. Illustration by John Hamer, from House of the Lord: The Story of Kirtland Temple. Used with permission.
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