LGBT Religious Archives Network News

Newsletter #84: May 26, 2011

This month's news:

  1. Oral History Interview Added
  2. New Historical Postings
  3. Donating My Papers
  4. Research Grants in Human Sexuality

1.  Oral History Interview Added

The most recent addition to LGBT-RAN's Oral History Project is an interview with Patrick McArron, early leader in Dignity USA and its San Diego chapter.  After coming out as a young  adult and connecting with the Metropolitan Community Church, McArron learned of a group of gay Catholics in Los Angeles. In 1972 he co-founded the San Diego chapter of Dignity USA. In later years he served as both national vice-president and president of Dignity.

The McArron interview was conducted by Dr. Heather White in 2005 as part of her dissertation research.  She has passed on the interview to LGBT-RAN in order to make it more widely accessible to scholars and researchers. If you are aware of other existent oral history interviews with LGBT religious leaders, please contact LGBT-RAN so we can inquire about incorporating them into this Oral History Project.

2.  New Historical Postings

Additional historical information has been added to the LGBT-RAN web site this month.  Two biographical statements were added to the Profiles Gallery:

This listing was added to the Collections Catalog:

LGBT-RAN depends upon friends like you to gather this historical information and send it to us to add to the Profiles Gallery and/or the Collection Catalog.

3.  Donating My Papers

After years of encouraging, cajoling and advising others to donate historical papers and records to an archive, I am finally doing it myself. The onset of spring produced a rush to reduce the clutter and congestion in my home.  In the midst of moving many useless files of paper to the recycle bin,  I found a drawer of files from my involvement in Affirmation: United Methodists for LGBT Concerns in the early 1980s. As an impassioned, young activist, I faithfully kept minutes, correspondence, and newsletters and clipped newspaper articles. I had planned to send these to the Affirmation Archives at Drew University some day.  Realizing that I had not perused these files in years led me to conclude that that time was now.

So I acquired a couple of sturdy boxes for the files and papers. One afternoon I flipped through the files quickly to remind me of what was there.  (The professional archivist does the detailed review, not me.) I emailed the United Methodist Archives to make sure they would be ready and willing to receive my 2.5 linear feet of papers.  Then I typed up a listing of the files and publications, sorting them into a rough chronological order.  Finally, I taped up the boxes securely and took them to the store for shipping.

It really wasn't that hard.  And I know I did my part to help preserve our voices and stories for future generations.

Mark Bowman

4.  Research Grants in Human Sexuality

The Human Sexuality Collection at the Cornell University Library recently announced the recipients of this year's Phil Zwickler Memorial research grants. These grants were established ten years ago to offer scholars assistance with expenses incurred conducting research on sexuality using sources and materials from the extensive  Human Sexuality Collection. More details about the grants and how a researcher can apply is at this link.

The LGBT Religious Archives Network News is an occasional email newsletter for persons interested in supporting the preservation of the history of LGBT religious movements. Subscribe now.