Open Church Speakers

Guest speakers for the event include:

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Andrew Marin - Andrew is the President and Founder of The Marin Foundation in Chicago. A charity working to build bridges between the lesbian and gay community and the Church through biblical and social education, scientific research and diverse community gatherings. He is the author of the award winning book Love is an Orientation and, over the last few years, has advised various United Nations agencies on bridging opposing worldviews and theological aspects of reconciliation.

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Vicky Beeching - Vicky is a theologian, writer and religious commentator. She studied Theology at Oxford University and is currently doing research for a PhD at Durham University exploring Christian theology, sexuality and gender. She regularly appears on national TV and radio.

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Tony Campolo (via video link) - Over his many years of Christian service, Tony has boldly challenged millions of people all over the world to respond to God’s boundless love by combining personal discipleship, evangelism and social justice. He is professor emeritus of sociology at Eastern University, Philadelphia, a former faculty member at the University of Pennsylvania, and the founder and president of the Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education. He has written more than 35 books. He is one of the founders of the Red Letter Christian movement and blogs regularly at his website, RedLetterChristians.org. Dr. Campolo and his wife Peggy live near Philadelphia and have two children and four grandchildren.

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Bishop Alan Wilson - Alan studied at St John's College, Cambridge and then Balliol College, Oxford, where he completed a doctorate in modern historical theology. He has been Bishop of Buckingham since 2003. Alan has a long-standing interest in human rights and equality. He writes for The Guardian newspaper and is a frequent broadcaster.

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Rachel Mann - Rachel Mann is an Anglican parish priest, writer and broadcaster. A trans woman, she was recently made a minor canon of Manchester Cathedral for her work as its resident poet. She is the author of several books including the Church Times bestseller Dazzling Darkness, a memoir of being trans, lesbian and a Christian.

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Reverend Steve Chalke - Founder of Oasis Global, a charity working to pioneer new and innovative models of Christ-centred community in the UK and around the world. Steve is also the leader of Oasis Church Waterloo and a Special Advisor to the United Nations.

Reverend Cameron Trimble - Cameron is the Founder and Executive Director of the Center for Progressive Renewal which exists to train entrepreneurial Church leaders, support the birth of new congregations and renew and strengthen existing churches across the USA. She is also the co-pastor of Virginia Highland Church in Atlanta. Cameron and Ann have been married for 15 years and have two children.

Other speakers and workshop leaders include:

Dr Christine Rose - Christine is a highly experienced equality and diversity consultant, who is an expert in UK legislation and offers advice and support to charities, business and churches as they improve their work in this field.

Matt Hurst - Matt has experience in the challenges faced by gay people as they engage in faith communities. Both he and his partner Nathan are now actively involved in Oasis Church Waterloo, where Matt is a member of the leadership team. He is also an expert in the dynamics of culture and building relationships with people of diverse backgrounds, with 15 years of experience in international communications. He is currently Executive Vice President of Culture at one of the world's largest communications firm.

Jill Rowe - Jill is a qualified Youth and Community Worker and Secondary School Teacher, having been Head of Religious Studies at an inner-city school in Derby. She joined Oasis in 1997 and is now National Director of Ethos & Formation. Jill is a speaker and writer and is passionate about the transformation of people and communities.

Rev. Benny Hazlehurst - Benny is a vicar and also Director of Accepting Evangelicals, an open network of evangelical Christians who believe the time has come to move towards the acceptance of faithful, loving same-sex partnerships at every level of church life. He is passionate about the development of a positive Christian ethic for lesbian and gay people. 

Further speakers to be announced.