Course Summary

Accompanying LGBTQ+ Youth

Phiwa Langeni
Kate Ott
LGBTQ+ Resources

Theologians and practitioners discuss the importance of supporting and walking with LGBTQ+ youth.


Phiwa Langeni Phiwa Langeni

As a queer, Black, trans person from an immigrant family, the Rev. Phiwa Langeni is quite skilled at detecting and decreasing various societal gaps, especially with/for those with multiple minoritized identities. Since ordination in 2011, Phiwa has served in just about every local church setting possible: a thriving progressive church, multi-charge rural churches, a large suburban church, small churches deeply rooted in political and social justice, a new church start/nonprofit hybrid. They currently serve as the Ambassador for Innovation and Engagement in the Center for Analytics, Research & Development, and Data of the United Church of Christ. Phiwa is the solo parent of an adult daughter who challenges them in brilliance and beauty. In their free time, Phiwa enjoys reading, upcycling, 90s R&B, dad jokes, and creating all manner of things.

Kate Ott Kate Ott

Dr. Kate Ott is a feminist, catholic scholar addressing the formation of moral communities with specializations in sexuality, technology, children/youth, and professional ethics. She is author of Sex +Faith: Talking with Your Child from Birth to Adolescence, co-editor of Faith, Feminism, andScholarship: The Next Generation, and the forthcoming Life Enhancing Settings: The Technology andEthics of Everyday Living. She lectures and leads workshops across the country on sexuality andtechnology issues related to children, teens, young adults and parents. She is Assistant Professor of Christian Social Ethics at Drew University Theological School in Madison, NJ and a Lecturer at Yale Divinity School in New Haven, CT. Prior to Drew, Kate was the Deputy Director of the Religious Institute, a non-profit committed to sexual health, education, and justice in faith communities andsociety and served as a youth minister for six years. To find out more about her workvisit

Yadi Martínez-Reyna Yadi Martínez-Reyna

Yadi Martínez Reyna is a bilingual Latinx gender non-conforming artist, UCC Licensed Minister, Pastor, and borderlander, born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas. Yadi serves as the LGBTQIA Unconscious Bias Awareness Facilitator with ten+ years of experience working with young people in the Dallas/Ft. Worth metropolitan area. Their work includes using arts and networking skills to create community events, retreats, leadership conferences, and safe spaces. Yadi is a certified facilitator in the Our Whole Lives (OWL) curriculum, which provides comprehensive sexuality education for young people. Yadi serves as a Youth Pastor at New Church, Chiesa Nuova, UCC, Dallas, Texas, and at First UCC in Second Life, where they are a part of a virtual reality congregation. Yadi has contributed to the Progressive Youth Ministry Blog that can be found on and at UCC Encuentros y Bienvenidad LGBTQ+ Inclusive toolkits.

Yale Youth Ministry Institute