The Two:23 Team: Kate, Lisa-Jayne, Alex, Rachel, Elaine, David, Sigrun & Ann (James & Matt not pictured)
Two:23 is a network of Christians, connected by LGBT (Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) issues, who have discovered that God loves us just as we are. This realisation frees us to unashamedly include and encourage all to discover the love of God for themselves, pursue the call of Christ and live in a way that cherishes others just as God cherishes us.
We hold five key meetings a year in a central London location on a Saturday afternoon. These involve some prayer and worship as well as a talk, and of course creating lots of opportunities for people to connect with new people, as well as catching up with old friends.
At a time when many of our churches are still sadly struggling to cope with fully affirming and including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, our vision is to create a space where absolutely everyone is welcome, whoever you are and wherever you’re at in terms of church or issues of sexuality and sexual identity. Whether you’ve been out and proud for years, or whether you’re still working through your beliefs regarding faith, gender and sexuality, we hope you will find a welcome here, with no pressure to be anything other than yourself. If you’ve never been to an LGBT-affirming event before, we hope you’ll feel especially welcome and safe. Find out more about our meetings here, or listen to previous talks at Two:23 here.
What about the name?
The name references a verse from the Old Testament prophet Hosea, who uses his own life as an allegory for God’s promise of love to the outsider, the excluded, the person considered a 'nobody':
I will say to those called ‘Not my people’, ‘You are my people’; and they will say ‘You are my God’.
We've written a meditation on the passage which you can read here.
When did Two:23 come from?
We were established in late 2012, emerging from a variety of groups and individuals, who share a common experience of having had to seriously engage with personal issues of faith and sexuality. Some of us have been involved with Courage, an LGBT-affirming ministry run by Jeremy Marks. Jeremy retired in 2012 but his pastoral work with LGBT people continues – you can read his story here.