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Trans Awareness Week at St Peters

Audio from the decorating of St Peter's church on Willis Street, Wellington. The church was decorated to honour and celebrate Transgender Awareness Week 2023.

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  • 00:01 - Michael Toy
  • 02:07 - Jem Traylen
  • 06:57 - Short service
  • 06:58 - Michael Toy
  • 09:50 - Jem Traylen
  • 10:39 - [unidentified voices]
  • 11:40 - Rev. Stephen King
  • 14:52 - Rev. Jean Malcolm


The audio recording captured at St. Peter's Church, Wellington, on November 12, 2023, celebrates Transgender Awareness Week with a vibrant blend of activism, spiritual reflection, and community engagement. It marks a significant moment in the church's progressive history, dating back to the 1960s, highlighting its role as a sanctuary and advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and inclusion.

The decoration of the church, using transgender pride colors, symbolizes the transformation of physical barriers into symbols of protection and inclusion. This act of decorating serves not just as a visual celebration but as a powerful statement against exclusion and for liberation, especially within religious spaces often marked by conservatism. The personal narratives and reflections shared during the event underscore the significance of queer and trans experiences, the challenges of transphobia, and the broader societal impact of these issues.

Central to the recording is the theme of Christianity's role in queer liberation. The speakers reflect on the need for the church to take responsibility for its part in the historic marginalization of queer and transgender individuals. They emphasize Christianity's core tenets of love and inclusivity, advocating for a reclamation of faith as a tool for empowerment rather than exclusion.

The event also features a litany and chorus of Thanksgiving, affirming the diversity and divinity within every individual, irrespective of their gender identity. The prayers and reflections express a desire for healing, peace, and strength to advocate for equality, embodying the principle of love and acceptance as the foundation of faith and community life.

The recording from St. Peter's Church during Transgender Awareness Week is a testament to the ongoing efforts of some faith communities to create inclusive and affirming spaces for all, especially for those who have been historically marginalized by religious doctrines.

This summary is created using Generative AI. Although it is based on the recording's transcription, it may contain errors or omissions. Click here to learn more about how this summary was created.

Record date:12th November 2023
Interviewer:Gareth Watkins
Location:St Peter's church, Wellington
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Archive:The master recording is archived at the Alexander Turnbull Library (reference number to be confirmed).