Scholar-Activist Encounter: Pride as Protest and Ekklesia (Gathering), Then and Now

Scholar-Activist Encounters

June 27, 2024, 7:30pm Eastern Time

How do activism and scholarship contribute to our understanding of Scripture in the world today?

All are warmly invited to a roundtable discussion hosted by CLBSJ Board Member Rev. Dr. Eric Thomas on the role of radical biblical interpretation in the Pride tradition, from the Stonewall Uprising to today. Panelist include Valerie Bridgeman, Danielle Dufoe, Leonard Curry and Nathan Sobers. Together, we will explore how embodied queer theologies and hermeneutics have evolved from the streets and the night clubs, to the sanctuaries and the academy, to resist toxic anti-LGBTQIA+ interpretation of scripture.

Register here:

Image from thewordyhabitat; used with permission.

Rev. Dr. Eric A. Thomas is an Assistant Professor of Bible at the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church and pastor at Siloam Presbyterian Church in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. His research interests include Queer biblical interpretation, Diasporic Studies and Homiletics. His research explores the potential for queer people of color to engage with scriptural texts to articulate and embody their own modes of flourishing. Eric is a graduate of Drew University where he completed the Ph.D. in New Testament with concentrations in Africana, and Women and Gender Studies, and the Interdenominational Theological Center where he completed his M.Div. Full Bio:

Rev. Dr. Valerie Bridgeman is Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Associate Professor of Homiletics and Hebrew Bible at the Methodist Theological School in Ohio. Dr. Bridgeman earned her Ph.D. at Baylor University, with focus in biblical studies (Hebrew Bible concentration) and secondary studies in ethics. She is a peace activist, an advocate for human rights, a prolific writer and preacher. She is also the founder and CEO of WomanPreach! Inc., which partners with MTSO to provide practical training and nurturing community spaces that empower preachers across the country. Full bio:

Danielle Dufoe is the Founder and CEO of the Black TransLiberation Movement, an organization that is dedicated to ensuring that federal policy accounts for Black Transgender and Gender Non Conforming (GNC) people, especially in the realms of Housing and Healthcare. NBTM is the largest organization of its kind and its mission is to communicate how Federal policy can adversely impact the daily lives of black trans and GNC people, and in some cases, how many policies can even result in the increased violence they face. She has a Masters in Education and is currently pursuing a M. Div at Howard University’s School of Divinity.

Rev. Dr. Leonard Curry is Assistant Professor of Theology at Xavier University of Louisiana who specializes in Christian social ethics, with a specific interest in interdisciplinary, de-disciplined, and undisciplined approaches to African American moral, social, and political thought. He has written on the operations of shame in the life of Bayard Rustin, the affective and political economies delimiting the accessibility to and intelligibility of black religious women’s anger, and on the necessity for intersectional approaches in the constitution of disability theology. Professor Curry is deeply invested in the hope for personal and collective liberation. Full bio:

Rev. Nathan Sobers is a Commissioned Ruling Elder in the PC(USA), and serves as the Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Soda Springs, ID. Raised a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Rev. Sobers was excommunicated for being gay at the age of 19. Rev. Sobers became the first openly gay person to be ordained an Elder in the Seattle Presbytery in 1994, and has subsequently served the church in various capacities, including as a past co-Moderator of More Light Presbyterians and founder of Stonewall Ministries. Nathan currently serves as the Moderator of the Kendall Presbytery and is a member of the executive committee of the General Assembly Committee on Representation.

The Center and Library for the Bible and Social Justice invites you to join us for an interactive dialogue exploring the interfaces between scholarship and activism. How do these ways of being contribute to our understanding of Scripture in the world today? Let’s come together to learn from each other. Most events take place on the third Thursday of the month at 4:30pm Pacific Time / 7:30pm Eastern Time. We do not meet every month, and occasionally meet on a different night.

See the full schedule of the Scholar-Activist Encounter series. For questions, email