Radical Welcome: Queering Institutional Habits and Holdouts

Fri 5 PM | Portal

Vanderbilt Divinity School

The demographics of our organizations, churches, and schools are increasingly diverse and complex, especially when it comes to a spectrum of gender and sexuality. Yet many institutions still hold on to practices that marginalize the very populations they profess to include. From bathrooms to classrooms and everything in between, this session will equip participants with real strategies to help transform their institutions into places of radical welcome from the inside out. Along the way, we’ll also explore ways to navigate roadblocks and avoid burnout.

Amy Steele

Amy Elizabeth Steele is Assistant Dean for Student Life at the Vanderbilt University Divinity School.

Rev. Dr. Steele is a frequent lecturer on and off campus, teaching often on the works of 20th-century mystic Howard Thurman. Her current book project Howard Thurman and the Art of Meaning explores the theoretical contributions in Thurman’s mystical aesthetic, a trope she developed to name the religious encounter and the deeply aesthetic aspects of Thurman’s rhetoric and practice. She frequently leads sessions on spiritual formation and facilitates gatherings on intersectional diversity and community life.

She earned both the MDiv (2000) and the Ph.D. (2012) from Vanderbilt Divinity and Vanderbilt University Graduate Department of Religion (Ethics and Society), respectively. She is ordained in the National Baptist Convention (February 2001) and is currently serving as an Associate Pastor at Cornerstone United Methodist Church. She is the mother of Isaiah, an 8th grader and budding historian.

150 Radical Welcome

Damien Domenack

Damien Domenack is pursuing a Master of Divinity degree at Vanderbilt University. He is the President of the Latinx Seminarians, and is a staff member of the LGBTQI Life Center at Vanderbilt. Damien is a founding member of Audre Lorde Project’s TransJustice in NYC, Damien collectively organized the first ever Trans Day of Action for Social and Economic Justice in New York City. Damien is a prison abolitionist and former Chapter Coordinator and media strategist for Critical Resistance-NYC. Damien served as a Community Partner to “States of Incarceration,” a contribution to The New School’s Humanities Action Lab, which will exhibit in Nashville in spring 2019.

150 Radical Welcome

Session #150