; charset=UTF-8" /> Diamond Bar UCC Hosts the Rev. Kayla Bonewell of Soulforce Equality Riders : Connecting Voices
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Diamond Bar UCC Hosts the Rev. Kayla Bonewell of Soulforce Equality Riders

Diamond Bar United Church of Christ
invites you to a screening of
Equality U
and a discussion with the Rev. Kayla Bonewell.


Sunday, February 5, 2012 at 12:00 p.m.


Diamond Bar United Church of Christ
2335 S. Diamond Bar Blvd.
Diamond Bar, CA  91765


This event is the part of Diamond Bar UCC’s 10 Year Anniversary of becoming ONA! 


About Rev. Bonewell:

    The Reverend Kayla Bonewell currently serves as Pastor for Children Youth & Young Adults. She was ordained in 2010 in the United Church of Christ and earned her Master of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, California. She holds a Masters of Liberal Arts from Naropa University, and a BA in Religion from Oklahoma City University. Kayla has ministry experience as a hospital chaplain, campus minister, social justice activist, and youth minister.

      She is a volunteer for the Rochester Intervention Gang Initiative and was a 2006 member of the Soulforce Equality Ride. Kayla and her partner Vangie Castro met in 2005 and live in Rochester Minnesota. Kayla enjoys facilitating Dream Work groups, creating Soul Collages, and playing cards.

     As a member of the Soulforce Equality Riders, Kayla visited over a dozen college and university campuses where merely being gay–or admitting as much–was grounds for expulsion. She and her dedicated team of social justice advocates worked to draw attention to the injustices at these schools, all of which are Christian, and to bring a message to the LGBT students at these schools, that they are not alone. Along the way, the Equality Riders faced moral condemnation and even arrest.

About Equality U:

     Equality U is a feature-length documentary following a group of 33 young activists on the Soulforce Equality Ride, a first of its kind, two-month, cross-country tour to confront antigay discrimination policies at 19 conservative religious and military colleges. It is a human story of a group of young people struggling to stand up for what they believe is right. Against the backdrop of the Equality Ride, the film focuses on seven of the “Equality Riders” and two courageous students they encounter along their journey. The Riders, led by Jacob Reitan (23) and Haven Herrin (23), must come to terms with their new role as young activists, deal with internal conflict within the group, and face the daily onslaught from administrators that don’t want them on their campuses. And while most of the young Riders identify as Christian, not all of them do so in the same way, if at all. 

     At each stop, the Riders exercise “relentless non-violent resistance” and often face arrest for trespassing. They must confront the controversial question: “Do schools ultimately have the right to decide who does and doesn’t belong?” But even in the most seemingly unwelcoming campuses, the Riders find straight students who are interested in a dialogue.
Can this small group of activists sow the seeds of dialogue as their bus rolls down the highway? How will the road change them? For the Riders that identify as both Queer and Christian, how will the journey challenge or transform their faith? And what happens to the outed gay students they encounter and then leave behind?

     Incorporating verité footage, interviews, and personal video journals recorded by the six central Riders themselves, Equality U focuses on the personal stories of our lead characters and the journeys they take during this foray into activism.  The story comes through their eyes. They’ll make mistakes and they’ll have conflict with the outside world and amongst themselves. Equality U looks closely at their personal struggles over the course of the entire tour, allowing us an intimate portrait of a group of young people on the forefront of social change.   (read more here)

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