Wednesday, April 4, 2007

First openly gay Episcopal bishop to speak at Vanderbilt

The first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church will speak at Vanderbilt University this month.

The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson, bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire, will speak at noon on Friday, April 13, in Benton Chapel on the Vanderbilt campus.

Robinson will speak on "Ministry in the Eye of the Storm." The lecture is free and open to the public.

Robinson is a graduate of the University of the South and General Theological Seminary. He was invested as the Ninth Bishop of New Hampshire in 2004, and his selection sparked a firestorm of debate on clergy and sexuality.

"If you want to know my homosexual agenda, it’s Jesus," CNN reported Robinson saying during a recent panel discussion hosted by the Washington Region for Justice and Inclusion in Washington, D.C.

"And I would propose to you that peoples' coming out – gay and lesbian folk being honest about who they are, what their lives are, what their families are like, their desire to contribute to this culture, to serve in the military, to take their place as full citizens of this country – is God at work."

Robinson has been a leader in the Episcopal Church on issues including clergy wellness, youth ministries, AIDS education, debt relief for impoverished nations and making health insurance more accessible.The lecture will be recorded for podcast on VUCast, the Web site of Vanderbilt News Service, at

Media Contact: Jim Patterson, (615) 322-NEWS

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