Gay and Christian: Exploring Vocation, Friendship, and Celibacy


The Saint Benedict Forum was pleased to host Eve Tushnet, Joshua Gonnerman, and Ron Belgau for a powerful symposium on Gay and Christian: Exploring Vocation, Friendship, and Celibacyon Monday, February 22, 2016 at Hope College.  All three speakers gave powerful testimonies and inspired a diverse crowd of 300 students, faculty, administration, parishioners, and others.

The three talks were:

“The Radical Challenge of Gay Celibacy”Eve Tushnet

“A Different Conversation: Changing How We Think about Gay PoliticsJoshua Gonnerman

“Understanding the Bible's Teaching on Homosexuality”Ron Belgau

See below for the video of the talks.

Ron Belgau is the cofounder of Spiritual Friendship, an ecumenical group blog dedicated to recovering the Church's traditional teachings on friendship and applying them to contemporary debates about homosexuality. He has studied philosophy at the graduate level at St. Louis University and Notre Dame, and has taught ethics, medical ethics, and philosophy of the Human Person at St. Louis University. He is a nationally known speaker, and in 2015 became the first openly gay Catholic to speak at the World Meeting of Families, in conjunction with Pope Francis's visit to Philadelphia

Joshua Gonnerman is a writer and doctoral student in theology at The Catholic University of America, writing his dissertation on Augustine's theology of grace and predestination. His articles have appeared in First Things, Spiritual Friendship, and PRISM Magazine.

Eve Tushnet is the author Gay and Catholic: Accepting My Sexuality, Finding Community, Living My Faith and Amends: A Novel. She lives in Washington, DC. Hobbies include sin, confession, and ecstasy.  She blogs at Patheos and has covered topics ranging from pro-life horror movies to the US National Figure Skating Championships. She was received into the Catholic Church in 1998.

This event is co-sponsored by Hope College's Religion Department, Women's and Gender Studies, Campus Ministries, Center for Ministry Studies, GRACES, and the Our Sunday Visitor Institute.