Name: Jenny Peek

Location: New Haven, CT

Affiliated Congregation: First Presbyterian Church of Grinnell, Iowa

Even though I know that PC(USA) Churches are welcome to LGBTQ folks in theory, wondering when, if, and how my sexuality will impact my ordination process, prospects of getting a call, and experience as an LGBTQ minister are still questions I return to on a regular basis. It will be amazing to get to know other LGBTQ students and ministers who struggle with the same questions (or feel liberated from them) and can share some of their present day experiences. I am hopeful that attending this retreat will bring me into community with some of the many wonderful people who are doing amazing work for the church. I am also hopeful that this retreat can be a grounding time of renewal, inspiration, and encouragement for me as my faith, pastoral identity, and dreams for the future continue to develop and grow.

Dear Friends,

This April, I’ve been offered the amazing opportunity to attend Parity’s 2016 Emerging LGBTQ Pastors Retreat. It is an incredible chance to join other LGBTQ people pursuing ministry, and recently ordained pastors in fellowship, worship and training.

Parity’s retreat gives people like me the unique opportunity to reconcile their identity and faith, and share and learn from one another in a supportive and healing environment. Within the last two years, six LGBTQ pastors from Parity’s community have been ordained -- their past participation and attendance at previous retreats helped them gain the confidence and spiritual support they needed to live into their calling.

I know I will benefit greatly from having that same life-changing experience, and this is where you come in. The gift you make today will go directly to covering the costs of travel, housing, food and training expenses for me to attend the retreat. I am truly grateful for any amount you can donate. Anything I raise over my goal of $900 will go to help others like me reconcile identity and faith. 

With deep appreciation,