News from AllianceQ: September 2021

Ministry Intern LaTayna Purnell welcomed into leadership with Disciples LGBTQ+ Alliance

We, the Disciples LGBTQ+ Alliance, are members of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), called to join in God’s work of transforming the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) into a just and inclusive church that welcomes persons of all gender expressions and sexual identities into the full life and leadership of the church. We are invested in supporting the discernment and formation of seminarians and ministers early in their vocation, and equipping individuals interested in social justice and nonprofit leadership.

With a range of gifts for this ministry, AllianceQ is excited and honored to welcome Dr. LaTayna Purnell (she/her) as our Ministry Intern through December 2021.

Dr. Purnell is a parent, an educator, a seminary student.

Moderator Rev. Luther Young describes Dr. Purnell as passionate and committed to equity work. Vice Moderator Alysha Laperche elaborates, “LaTayna is very focused on the external and action-oriented aspects of justice work in ministry. She is articulate and an amazing candidate to serve with us.”

From LaTayna

Hello, I am LaTayna Purnell (she/her/hers). I am a second-year Master of Divinity student with a concentration in UCC/DOC studies at the United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities (UTS). Before coming to UTS, I spent almost all my professional career in education. I have worked both as a PK-12 teacher and college professor, as well as a higher education administrator. My journey to seminary may sound familiar; as I heard God calling me, but ran until the call became too present to ignore. The work of AllianceQ is meaningful to me as a queer woman, because I grew up United Methodist, but chose to join the UCC/DOC church due to their support and affirmation of the LGBTQ+ community. Recognizing that there is still work to be done, I am grateful for the opportunity to help shift the growing edges of more congregations towards becoming a truly beloved community. During my time as an intern with AllianceQ, I hope to address and celebrate our transgender siblings, and bring awareness to the need to provide support both within and beyond the church walls.

Welcome, LaTayna, to this holy work.