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Date(s) - 02/08/2020
9:00 am - 4:30 pm

First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse

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multi colored array of squares with world Building Beloved Community Beyond the Binary

Face of Dr Robyn Henderson-Espinoza



First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse is once again hosting a Building Beloved Community Beyond the Binary conference on February 9, 2019. Registration starts at 8:30. The day begins at 9:00 am with our keynote and will be over at 4:30 pm. This conference is focussed on transgender and non-binary identity issues and concerns. As a congregation it is our hope that this one-day conference will be both a place where trans and gender non-conforming folk can gather, connect and learn and where cisgender folk can learn about being better allies.


Dr. Robyn Henderson-Espinoza is our keynote speaker. Robyn Henderson-Espinoza, PhD, is a Transqueer Latinx activist scholar. Their dynamic and inspiring presentations explore the Intersections of queer justice and anti-racism, dismantling white supremacy and displacing whiteness, gender justice as human rights work, and bridging differences within our communities, campuses and churches.

We will also be offering the following workshops:

Morning Workshop (10:45 -12 noon)

Trans 101 – This workshop is designed for the needs of people who are just starting out thinking about gender. Cis gender people will have an appropriate, non-intrusive way to ask questions. Presenter Evin Carvil ziemer

Promising Practices for Supporting Your Child through Transition – This workshop will help guide parents/families on how to be supportive when their loved one comes out to them, what the transition process might look like and tips on being a better ally as a whole.

Fireside chat with Robyn– this is a closed space for trans and non-binary people for an open-ended conversation

“Care and Trauma: Finding Healing In the Storm” – There have been many break throughs in the world of trauma care from better understandings of neuroscience to the way trauma is passed from generation to generation in DNA. As transgender and/or nonbinary people, we often find our lives and/or our bodies at the center of trauma. This workshop will explore some of these new breakthroughs as they impact oppression, personal mental health, and family relationships. Special focus will be given to how we care for ourselves and loved ones when find ourselves in the heart of the storm.
Rev. Sunshine Wolf

First Afternoon Workshops 1:15 – 2:45

Deconstructing Whiteness: Questions for White People to Ask Ourselves – in this discussion style workshop i invite other white people to explore the roots and current effects of whiteness on ourselves and others. while anyone is welcome to attend, this workshop is aimed at folks with white privilege who—in addition to listening to and learning from people of color who we compensate for their time, expertise, and emotional labor—want to take responsibility for our privilege and carry on antiracist work among ourselves. Presenter Tobias Vargrim

Parenting Trans Kids a Panel  – A panel of parents of trans youth as well as three trans youth will discuss their own journey and also issues that families with trans children often face. Facilitator Karen Fuller

Trans 12 step meeting. This is a 12 step meeting for trans non binary folk.

Trans Non Binary Spirituality Group – This is a closed group for trans and non binary folk. Many of us have been wounded by religious and spiritual communities before. In this hour, I invite you to bring your wounds, whatever you might have cherished from your history, your connections to holiness and the universe, and your mixed jumble of all of these things. I will ask the group three questions and we will discuss together: what is your gender story? What is your spiritual/religious story? How do these two stories connect, or not? .
This time and conversation will be held by the UU practice of covenant. This practice is about naming and promising each other how we will be in the space together. Things like: respect the differences that might emerge amongst us, and sit with the incompleteness of what we can say in only an hour. Facilitator Sky Williams-Tao.

The Trans-ition into Aging – Regardless of when someone transitions, we all eventually get older. Join Tim, Shauna, Sam and Penny as they speak from their different perspectives on being transgender and the issues that come up as they age. Each will talk about their own unique struggles, challenges and successes. Learn their perspectives on navigating personal, social, and professional relationships. They will speak to navigating lives, and their concerns as they look forward to becoming seniors. Finally, they will suggest ways allies can help support transgender persons as they age.

Second Afternoon Workshops 3 – 4:15

Transitioning through Time: A Brief History of Transgender and Other Gender Non-conformity
Transgender people and other instances of gender non-conformity have existed throughout human history. In this workshop, we will explore instances of our existence from a historical perspective. We will learn about a few of the gender warriors and pioneers who paved the way for the few legal protections that we enjoy. You will understand that there is more to embrace about a nontraditional gender identity than pain and premature death. Join us as we explore our transitions in and throughout time. Presenter Dionne Stallworth-Robinson

“Loving the Hell out of the World” a De-escalation Workshop – This workshop will cover skills for understanding and responding to hatred, rudeness, and violence. Presenter Rev. Sunshine Wolf

Deconstructing Cis-ness – We will explore what it means to be a cisgender person, how people and cultures both encourage cis-ness and discourage ways of being outside cis-ness. Anyone is welcome to attend, though this workshop is especially for cisgender people and anyone new to understanding how cis-ness impacts their lives. Presenters: Maxx Hill and Kurt Hohmann

Where Do We Go From Here – Hopefully this conference will have given its participants an opportunity to learn and to connect. But what now? Presenter: Rev. Evin Carvill-Ziemer will help participants find ways to take their learnings home.