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Neighbours organize day of presentations

By: Jordan Ross

Posted: 02/22/2018 9:15 AM

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Steinbach Neighbours for Community will hold a free come-and-go event this weekend designed to advance ongoing local dialogues about sexuality and diversity.

Connecting Neighbours: Exploration and Conversation takes place this Saturday, Feb. 24, from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Pat Porter Active Living Centre in Steinbach.

Five presenters will address a range of topics, including biblical reception, transgender experience, sexual identity awareness, scientific perspectives on intersex people, and sexuality in the animal kingdom.

Some presentations will involve storytelling and humour, while others will use the critical tools of theology, social science, and biology.

"We just wanted to bring more information to the table," said Val Hiebert, a Neighbours spokesperson and one of the day’s presenters.

"Conversation remains so central to us as Neighbours."

Refreshments and a light lunch are provided, and time for questions and conversation will be interspersed throughout the day. Donations are welcome.

Hiebert said she hopes the material presented will be useful to attendees mulling questions of sexuality, culture, and the Bible.

"A lot of the feedback we’ve gotten in previous events indicates that people have a lot of questions about everything surrounding human sexuality," Hiebert observed.

"We recognize there’s a lot of information that people don’t have, and thought maybe it would be a good idea to create a resource-type day where we just offer people information that’s relevant to the issue."

Saturday’s presentations follow several Neighbours events over the last 18 months, including a pair of theatre productions and a film screening.

"We’ve had a whole range of different ways of trying to bring people into conversation with each other on these issues," Hiebert said.

"We hope it continues to broaden the conversation, to help people to have more tools as they…work through this issue in their families, their workplaces, and their churches."

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