Michiana Adventist Forum

   Community Announcements | Posted on March 1, 2018

Michiana Adventist Forum


"The Ties that Bind? Exploring the Impact of SDA Family Response to LGBT+ Children" 

with a panel of Andrews University professors and researchers:

Curt Vanderwaal, PhD
David Sedlacek, PhD
Nancy Carbonell, PhD
Shannon Trecartin, PhD

Saturday Afternoon at 3:30 pm
March 10, 2018

Chan Shun Hall
Andrews University
Berrien Springs, MI

About the Speakers
Four professors at Andrews University teamed up to study the experience of Seventh-day Adventist LGBT+ youth related to coming out to their families:

  • Curtis VanderWaal, MSW, Ph.D., is Chair and Professor of Social Work at Andrews University, where he has taught since 1990.
  • Nancy Carbonell, PhD, is Professor of Counselor Education and Counseling Psychology and is the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program Coordinator at Andrews University.
  • David Sedlacek, PhD, is Professor of Family Ministry and Discipleship and Director of the MA in Youth and Young Adult ministry at the SDA Theological Seminary at Andrews University. He is also a licensed masters social worker and a certified family life educator.
  • Shannon Trecartin, PhD, is assistant professor of social work at Andrews University. She is also a licensed masters social worker.

About the Topic
We surveyed more than 300 adults ages 18-35 who identified as LGBT+ and were raised in the Adventist church. We have focused mostly on the LGBT+ individuals who experienced varying levels of family acceptance or support, as well as current levels of social support, self-esteem, depression, substance use, risky sexual activity, recent suicidal thoughts, and lifetime suicide attempts. We found generally low levels of family acceptance and support, as well as elevated levels of depression and at-risk thoughts and behaviors, with higher levels among those who experienced high levels of rejection. That said, a high proportion of respondents have retained strong spiritual commitment and moderate church involvement. Almost one-third (31.7%) of respondents said they had thoughts of suicide or thoughts of ending their life during the past six months. This is over eight times the rate of suicide thoughts in the general population.

Adventist Forum is open to the public. All are welcome. For information, contact Art Robertson at robertsa2@earthlink.net or call 471-7150.