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Imago Gei

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IMAGO GEI is a new podcast that will feature relevant topics for the SDA Kinship community. Kendra Arsenaux is a member of SDA Kinship and is an experienced Adventist podcaster. Most recently she podcasted for "Advent Next" exploring hot topics in the SDA church. 

Spectrum and SDA Kinship have partnered and contracted to bring you weekly IMAGO GEI podcasts for the next year. IMAGO GEI is a play on words of the term IMAGO DEI, illustrating that everyone, including "gays" are made in the image of God. The first podcast is expected to be released on February 4. Check your favorite podcast platform for IMAGO GEI and be sure to subscribe to it in order not to miss any episodes.

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Imago Gei | Queer Faith. Colorful God.

Imago Gei is a play on the term Imago Dei, which means made in the Image of God. Imago Gay is a gay podcast production affirming that we are all deserving of dignity. Gay church anyone? Spectrum Magazine, SDA Kinship along with Kendra Arsenault M.Div. have come together to bring you the latest on queer theology and a minority perspective on faith. Imago Gay is the affirmation of our humanity and shared value in the eyes of God. This dignity and affirmation of human value, which is the birthright of every living and breathing human being is one that is often forgotten when affirming the dignity of LGBTQ lives. LGBTQ youth are four times as likely to commit suicide. LGBTQ youth also make up 40% of the homeless youth in America. Unfortunately, much of their suicidality and housing insecurity is caused by bad theology. Whether it’s parents who kick their children out of the home for coming out, or the depression that comes with believing that being queer means there is no future possibility of love, family and happiness and you’ve once dreamed. Bad theology is one that does not treat the other as Imago Dei, made in the image of God. So as a statement both to ourselves and to others, Imago Gei is a podcast that affirms that we are all made in the image of God, even the gays….
  • Community Through Shared Values
    22 September 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei, a podcast dedicated to the value of Imago Dei, because equality and dignity of LGBTQ lives matter. This week  co-host Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle, M.Div. along with your host Kendra Arsenault, M.Div discuss the ways we can improve relationships and find community through shared values. Spiritual Care Provider Del Valle explores her spiritual evolution through the work of chaplaincy along with a few intriguing stories on how chaplaincy has forced her to bridge divides through common connections. We also continue our celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, exploring insights from Kat Armas' book Abuelita Faith. Our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship international, so if you haven’t already, please sign up for their newsletters, where you will get the latest updates on queer news and happenings.
  • Happy Hispanic Heritage Month
    15 September 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei, a podcast dedicated to the value of Imago Dei, because equality and dignity of LGBTQ lives matter. This week we have Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle, M.Div. along with your host Kendra Arsenault, M.Div both discussing the first topic in the Redefine series, where we look at finding bigger boxes for a bigger God. This week we are addressing fundamental belief number one: the Bible is a sacred text. In the spirit of finding community through common values, we’re tackling one of the first central tenets of Christian beliefs, including SDAs, to see if we can turn this belief into a value that can be shared by both Christians and non-Christians alike. In addition to this, we are celebrating National Hispanic Heritage month and beginning our podcast discussing our experience as Latinx LGBTQ persons of faith. Our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship international, so if you haven’t already, please sign up for their newsletters, where you will get the latest updates on queer news and happenings.
  • Bigger Boxes, Bigger God
    08 September 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei a play on the term Imago Dei because the dignity and equality of LGBTQ lives matter. This week on Imago Gei Kendra Arsenault, M.Div. and Roxan Del Valle, M.Div. host the episode Bigger Boxes, Bigger God, where we discuss the limitations of belief to bind us as communities and instead learn how we can begin to find common ground in common values. Further still, we ask how can we begin to find a resolution between our beliefs and our bodies. What do we do with cognitive dissonance, and how cognitive dissonance shows up in our spiritual practices?
  • Repotting, Replanting & Redefining Joy
    01 September 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei, a podcast dedicated to the value of Imago Dei, because equality and dignity of LGBTQ lives matter. On this episode of Imago Gei we have Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle, M.Div. along with your host Kendra Arsenault, M.Div discussing the book "Repotting Your Life" by Frances Edmonds and asking the question, What is Enough? We also observe the parallels in our own personal journeys of what it has meant to restart life as open, same-gender loving women, and the obstacles that arise when a person makes a fresh start. How do we begin to redefine joy? God? Faith? Salvation? And Friendship? What pots are you bursting out of and in what areas do you need to be replanted. This week is an introduction to our new series called "Redefine" where we find bigger pots to plant a more inclusive God. Our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship international, so if you haven’t already, please sign for their newsletters where you will get the latest updates on LGBTQ news and happenings.
  • The Bible & LGBTQ Adventists (Pt. 2) Pr. Alicia Johnston
    18 August 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei, a podcast dedicated to the value of Imago Dei, because equality and dignity are what we impart when I see the image of God in each other. This week, host Kendra Arsenault continues her conversation with Pastor Alicia Johnston, the author of her new book, "The Bible and LGBTQ Adventists,"where she addresses queer theology and answers a number of questions about the Bible and what it has to say regarding LGBTQ persons, relationships, origins, and marriage. We are picking up our conversation around how institutions often create standards that are difficult for marginalized communities to obtain to and what a more inclusive community of faith can look like. If you’d like an opportunity to win a free copy of Pastor Alicia Johnston’s new book listen to the end and find out how you can win your free copy today!
  • The Bible & LGBTQ Adventists (Pr. Alicia Johnston)
    12 August 2022
    Welcome back to Imago Gei, a podcast dedicated to the value of Imago Dei, meaning we are all deserving of dignity because we are all made in the image of God. This week I am excited to be sharing this platform with Pastor Alicia Johnston, the author of the new book, The Bible and LGBTQ Adventists, where she addresses queer theology and answers a number of questions about the Bible and what it has to say regarding LGBTQ persons, relationships, origins, and marriage. If you’d like an opportunity to win a free copy of Pastor Alicia Johnston’s new book "The Bible and LGBTQ Adventists" listen to the end and find out how you can win your free copy today!
  • Letters to Lucinda
    21 July 2022
    Today I’m tackling a controversial question. However, it’s not so much an answer that we’re going to arrive at, but a journey we’re going to go on. Was EGW an LGBTQ? Now for those of you listening who are not familiar with Adventist history, I apologize. She was a historical figure in the founding of the Adventist church. I’m not unaware of how negatively and even unfavorably just asking this question might be received. But I really believe it’s important to ask questions, even the questions you think you shouldn’t ask. I recently gave this presentation at the Kinship Kampmeeting, and it all started when I Googled a single question, as I often do, “Was Ellen White an LGBTQ?” For those who may be wary that I’m even asking the question, let me assure you, the results are inconclusive. Culture and language, and expressions of self-identity have drastically changed since the 1840s. So we have to do a bit of time traveling to explore 19th-century same-gendered relationships. While there are no hard claims made at anything, I do investigate a series of private letters that reveal a not-so-public truth. So if you’re interested in going on a journey, buckle up because it’s a wild ride.
  • Roe v. Wade v. Same-sex Relationships
    14 July 2022
    This month we are continuing the celebrations of Pride Month, as we uplift LGBTQ stories. Today, I, Kendra Arsenault, engage with Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle to discuss the impact of the overturn of Roe v. Wade on us women along with the impacts this decision has on trans and non-binary lives. We also discuss how this decision is relevant to queer history. This weekend, I am sharing a presentation on same-gender lesbian relationships in the 1800s and discovering how much society has changed as well as how much it hasn’t.
  • Outed (Jay Wintermeyer)
    07 July 2022
    Hello friends, welcome back to Imago Gei, a play on the term Imago Dei, which means in the image of God because as humans, we are all entitled to dignity and kindness. This week, I am interviewing Jay Wintermeyer, a former NAD administrator who was outed by an anonymous letter and then forced to resign. We discuss the ways these types of behaviors affect the LGBTQ community as well as better ways to be an ally. For those listening, I’m your host Kendra Arsenault and our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship International, so make sure you sign up for their newsletters where you will get the latest on queer news and happenings.
  • Cancelled
    30 June 2022
    This week on Imago Gei (a play on the term Imago Dei), we end pride month with a heavy heart, discussing the impact of Roe v. Wade upon our lives along with some recent events in which Spectrum Magazine was uninvited to a pastoral convention because of their brave work associated with empowering LGBTQ people and voices. This week, I have Chaplain and Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle along with myself, Kendra Arsenault, and our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship International, so make sure you sign up for their newsletters where you will get the latest on queer news and happenings.
  • What is Family? PRIDE Edition
    23 June 2022
    Happy Pride month everyone, today, I have Chaplain and Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle. In honor of pride month, I want to talk about what is family. There is often controversy when it comes to LGBTQ marriage and family, and what makes a happy home. Are children worse off if they have two gay parents? Or is there something to be celebrated about LGBTQ love and growing up in queer households?
  • Self-Acceptance (Floyd Poenitz)
    09 June 2022
    Happy Pride month everyone, today on Imago Gei, I have a special interview with the president of SDA Kinship International, Floyd Poenitz. In honor of pride month, I want to highlight Kinship, the people behind it, and the effort they have dedicated to creating safe spaces for LGBTQ Adventists. I love hearing stories of people who have long been in the struggle for equity and witnessed steady progress towards equality and inclusion in society while continuing to work patiently with churches to envision a safer and more diverse environment. For those listening, I’m your host Kendra Arsenault and our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship International, sHappy Pride month everyone, today on Imago Gei, I have a special interview with the president of SDA Kinship International, Floyd Poenitz. In honor of pride month, I want to highlight Kinship, the people behind it, and the effort they have dedicated to creating safe spaces for LGBTQ Adventists. In this interview, we discuss the journey of self-acceptance and the often winding and difficult decisions we make along the road to loving ourselves. As you listen, I hope you enjoy this story of someone who has long been in the struggle for equity and witnessed steady progress towards equality and inclusion in society while continuing to work patiently with churches to envision a safer and more diverse environment. For those listening, I’m your host Kendra Arsenault and our sponsors for today are Spectrum Magazine and SDA Kinship International, so make sure you sign up for their newsletters where you will get the latest on queer news and happenings.o make sure you sign up for their newsletters where you will get the latest on queer news and happenings.
  • LGBTQ Pride and the Female Gaze
    02 June 2022
    Happy Pride Month! This week Spiritual Care Provider Roxan Del Valle and Kendra Arsenault M.Div. reflect on a year of LGBTQIA pride along with female sexuality through the lens of the female gaze.
  • Healing From Religious Trauma (Dr. Dee Knight)
    12 May 2022
    In this episode of Imago Gei, we discuss healing from religious trauma with Dr. Dee Knight, a clinical psychologist. The road to healing is a journey we are all invited to take, and none of us have to take it alone.
  • Landslides | (Journey pt. 2)
    28 April 2022
    My relationship with God and my relationship with the Church has often been a very different relationship. In part two of "Journey to Affirming Theology," I discuss particular junctures at which my experience and my beliefs were incongruent, and what happens at the crossroads. As someone who has grown up with an understanding of the church as a vehicle for humanitarian efforts--feeding the homeless, healing the sick, and helping the vulnerable among us--the gospel and social justice have often been inextricably linked. But what happens when the questions of ethics are at crossroads with institutional idealisms? How can we begin to allow the questions of ethics to inform how we practice a faith that performs practical good in the world?
  • The Power of Personal Story and Counternarrative in a Reflective Theology
    21 April 2022
    On this LGBTQ Podcast, Dr. Melodie Roschman discusses her dissertation, "Identity, Counternarrative, and Community in Progressive Christian Women's Memoir," with Kendra Arsenault on this episode of Imago Gei, affirming Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Queer identities in religious spaces. When we think about testimony in Scripture, eye-witness accounts, what a person heard or saw, life stories like Ruth and Esther, the testimony of John in Revelation, or the visions of Isaiah and Daniel, personal experience with the world and with God matter. So what is the place of personal story and memoir when building a reflective theology? How do we include the proverbial Yelp Review of certain Christian disciplines or traditions and use it to inform our present beliefs and practices? What’s the role of feedback and should it be taken into consideration when building a belief about God?
  • Journey to LGBTQ Affirming PT. 1
    14 April 2022
    The journey to becoming LGBTQ affirming in a religious setting or church environment is dependent on more than simple Bible knowledge or good exegesis. LGBTQ affirming is a position people come to based on a theology that takes holistic consideration of what is ethical, good, and just. At a minimum, LGBTQ affirming is to exercise the reflexive practice of asking how a particular theological construct advantages or disadvantages people, especially marginalized people. The experiences for queer, trans, gay, and lesbian members under the religious constructs of the church are the nerve endings that, in a healthy body, signal to the brain vital feedback necessary to keep the body from harm.
  • Lesbians, Leviticus & Eunuchs, Oh My!
    07 April 2022
    Professor Matthew Korpman and Kendra Arsenault finish out this queer theology series on Imago Gay by discussing the absence of women in the Levitical laws against homosexuality, the broad category of sexually divergent people that Eunuchs encompass and a more inclusive theology that holds an all-embracing view of LGBTQ people in the history of faith. "I am so sick and tired of people saying that Leviticus 18 and 22 or 20:13 have to do with homosexuality because homosexuality has a definition. It is a sexual orientation that has to involve both sexes, and it has to involve much more than sex, a whole orientation, a whole sensibility. You can be homosexual and never actually have sex."
  • Trans-Woman | Struggle and Triumph
    31 March 2022
    On this episode of Imago Gei, Randi Robertson discusses her journey as a trans woman married to her college sweetheart and working as an Air Force pilot for 22 years as well as an instructor for a Christian university. As we end Women's Month, we are going out with thoughtful consideration over gender and the implications of being a woman or trans woman both in the church and in society.
  • I'm Triggered! Big Feelings on LGBTQ Matters
    24 March 2022
    "What do I do with the mad that I feel when I feel so mad I could bite!" Mr. Rogers shared this piece of therapeutic children's music at Congress back in 1969. Today, we are still learning how to manage emotions, especially regarding the church and LGBTQ matters. So why are we all so TRIGGERED? Spiritual Care Provider Roxan and Kendra Arsenault M.Div. dive into the world of feelings, theology, and LGBTQ identities to explore what about gayness makes us so mad, scared, and grieved. We also discuss how we can all do a little better at honoring our feelings. Word of the week is Spiritual Bypassing. How have our favorite religious shortcuts, "God is good," "God would never give me more than I can handle," "In this life, we are meant to suffer to receive a heavenly reward," turned into a way of circumventing the difficult task of dealing with our humanity? Turns out, we might not be that spiritual, after all. Pastoral care for LGBTQ church members is essential. So this week, we provide practical training for pastors, elders, and spiritual leaders to help them understand and better care for the LGBTQ community.
  • An Unchanged Ministry
    17 March 2022
    In 1987 the Seventh-day Adventist church sued SDA Kinship International claiming trademark infringement for using the name "SDA". The lawsuit has had ripple effects throughout the LGBTQ community and their continued relationship with the church. After participating in a grueling trial, many left the institution never to return. Others saw this victory as a landmark that one's religious identity does not exist with the institution, but with people. On this episode I talk with Floyd Poenitz, president of SDA Kinship International regarding the history of SDA Kinship and what more we still have to learn from affirming LGBTQ lives.
  • King David Bisexual? Sodom and Gomorrah Gay?
    10 March 2022
    Was David bisexual? Is Sodom and Gomorrah really a reference to homosexuality or something else? On this episode of Imago Gei, Kendra Arsenault talks with Matthew Korpman about his book Saying No to God and the insights he shares in his chapter "Saying No to Homophobia." There has often been controversy in the Christian community regarding whether or not Jonathan and David shared more than a strictly platonic relationship. So what would it mean if David really was bisexual? Would that change our perception of this Biblical icon? We also discuss the often referred to example of Sodom and Gomorrah, which has often is a story often leveraged against the LGBTQ community. So is Sodom and Gomorrah really a cautionary tale towards the LGBTQ community or is there another possible reading of the text?
  • LGBTQ Discrimination and Title IX
    03 March 2022
    Civil rights attorney Amanda Ghannam and Kendra Arsenault discuss why LGBTQ Discrimination at religious institutions is legal unfortunately. Prosecution of LGBTQ discrimination cases in religious settings is so difficult due to First Amendment complications. So what is the history of LGBTQ legislation and what is the possibility for legislative change in the future?
  • Saying No to Homophobia | Matthew Korpman
    24 February 2022
    Imago Gei is an affirmation of dignity for LGBTQ members, a declaration that we too are imago dei, or made in the image of God. On this episode, Kendra Arsenault interviews Matthew Korpman who is critical of the church's relationship towards LGBTQ members and makes a Biblical argument against prejudice. Discussing his book, "Saying No To God", this episode is focused on his chapter "Saying No To Homophobia." The theological emphasis of this week's episode brings insights into queer theology and builds a framework for discussing LGBTQ lives with a dignified theological perspective.
  • Transcendence | The Story of Ari Bates
    17 February 2022
    This week on Imago Gei, Kendra Arsenault interviews Ari Bates, a transgender woman currently studying and employed at Southern Adventist University. After publicly coming out as transgender, she was made aware of a new policy that will be implemented on Southern's campus requiring transgender students to dress according to their gender assigned at birth. After coming out, she was placed on administrative leave. So today, we hear her story and her experience as a transgender woman, daughter and student.
  • The LGBTQ Experience
    10 February 2022
    On this episode of Imago Gei, a multitude of LGBTQ voices share their stories of struggle, triumph and faith, along with their complicated relationship with the church. Understanding queer theology is more than just closing the loops in logic, it is being responsible for the impact of our theology upon LGBTQ lives. Living in the fullness of love, joy and peace starts with listening