A night of storytelling on June 15th that takes participants through the decades from 1969-present as we explore LGBTQ+ Jewish history. Each decade has a different theme that speaks to the experience of being an LGBTQ+ person. Each of our speakers will be sharing a personal story about what it was like to be LGBTQ+ and Jewish during that time and centering around the themes we have assigned to each one. As our speakers share their experiences in each decade Melissa Smith will be narrating our journey through time by highlighting these themes and giving context in important events that happened during these times. For the years of 1969-1979 our speaker will talk about discovery of ones queer identities. For the years of 1980-1989 our speaker will be talking about the coming out process in both Jewish and secular spaces. In the next decade, 1990-1999 our speaker will be talking about resistance, and what it was like to be LGBTQ+ identifying during the AIDs crisis. From 2000-2009 our speaker will be talking about spirituality. In the next decade, 2010-2019 our speaker will be sharing about the theme of visibility. Lastly looking at the present day with the theme of looking to our future as LGBTQ+ Jews.
We will be creating connections between LGBTQ+ Jews and their history while educating allies about the injustices that are faced. This project will work to create a safe space through LGBTQ+ Jews to tell their stories. It will further JPride’s mission by helping LGBTQ+ Jews see themselves in our history, educate the Jewish community about LGBTQ+ Jewish history and provide a framework for other communities to share this history by creating a digital timeline with important events through the decades.
This grant supports the program as a culmination of this year long project. The grant will be for the opportunity to share the learning, creating and curating the committee of volunteers has worked to develop.