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Birmingham, England

Connected: Biblical Hope for the Lonely (Women's Conference)

This one day conference is aimed at Christian women who experience same-sex temptations. The event is open to members of TFT. Family, friends, church leaders and youth workers are very welcome and will be asked to join the membership when booking. The venue is near to Birmingham New Street station and will be released when booking is completed with a detailed programme of the days events.  The Conference will be held in rooms on the third floor of the building. There is no ramp or lift for wheelchair users. Please ring the office to enquire about accessibility if you have a disability.

There will be two teaching sessions in the morning led by Jeanette Howard, who writes:

Neuroscientist, John Cacioppo, has studied the subject of loneliness for much of his professional life. He says, “The absence of social connection triggers the same, primal alarm bells as hunger, thirst and physical pain.” Feeling lonely can trigger shaming thoughts encouraging a person to conclude that they are unloved and unlikeable and without worth.

For someone who experiences same-sex attraction, choosing to follow Jesus can often promote a sense of isolation and feelings of loneliness. Is this inevitable? Is loneliness a chronic malaise without solution? Does the Christian faith offer hope and resolution?

Session One – Born to Belong

Augustine’s quotation, "Because God has made us for Himself, our hearts are restless until they rest in Him" is famous because he has expressed Truth in a mere sixteen-word sentence.

What does it mean to belong? How does that make a person feel? How does knowing that I belong equip me to explore the fulness of life promised by Jesus (John 10:10)?

Session Two – Born to Be and Behave

It isn’t our circumstances that determine feelings of loneliness, but it is how we feel about those circumstances that colour and shape our life.

The Bible states that we are born of God (John 1:13), recipients of His unrestrained love (1 John 3:1), and equipped, according to the apostle Paul, to view our challenges as … light and momentary troubles [that] are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. (2 Corinthians 4:7)

It is true that the Christian faith does not offer immunity from difficulties, and feelings of periodic loneliness may well follow critical times in a person’s life. But we can learn to live out of a full heart built to withstand the inevitable experience of difficulties, suffering, and loss. Grounded in the confidence of being known and treasured challenges our sense of isolation and, in turn, offers a path out of loneliness.

Jeanette Howard BioPhoto of Jeanette Howard

Jeanette Howard was a self-identifying lesbian in a committed relationship until she encountered Christ and the reality of a relationship with God. Jeanette’s life changed forever. Thirty-five years later, she readily admits that it is only an ever-deepening intimacy with the Father and with Jesus that maintains her life as a single and celibate woman.

Jeanette shares biblical truth illustrated by her own experiences at churches, seminars, and conferences around the world. She works regularly alongside the ministry, Living Out, and has been part of a large Anglican initiative, Living in Love and Faithfulness, for the past two years. Jeanette is the author of three books.

Jeanette’s fantasy is to grow old (and probably mad) surrounded by animals somewhere in the countryside.

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