Institute of Theology and Social Change


The Institute of Theology and Social Change is a fellowship part of the Religion & Faith Program that provides LGBTQ faith leaders and allies the tools and resources to be effective organizers and advocates for LGBTQ justice and equity in faith communities and the public square.

The Institute is driven by the Human Rights Campaign’s core values, and built on five central tenets:

  • Interfaith Advocacy: In every faith tradition there is an ethic of justice that drives spiritual communities to be welcoming and inclusive spaces. Working together inter-religiously allows us to make the dream of full equality a reality.
  • Community Centered Organizing: The work of equality has always been driven by the unrelenting work of local grassroots leaders and organizations. The Institute will work alongside and support the work of local organizers leading in advancing equality.
  • Mass Grassroots Mobilization: Working with a national network of pro-equality people of faith, the Institute will provide the foundations and framework for advancing a mass people’s movement to move forward an agenda of intersectional LGBTQ justice and liberation.
  • Leadership Development: The Institute will provide faith leaders and organizers with leadership development resources to maximize their impact and cultivate new leaders in their communities.
  • Cross-sector Strategic Movement Building: In the spirit of collaboration, fellows will be equipped to work cooperatively with leaders across the movement to bring about justice and liberation for all marginalized communities.

The inaugural cohort of the Institute of Theology and Social Change will begin on November 18th, 2020, and run through Spring 2021 with two 2-day virtual trainings in November and December, and monthly trainings beginning in January 2021.

Fellows will receive training in:

  • Public Theology
  • Faith and Political Organizing
  • Capacity Building and Movement Mobilization
  • Storytelling and Communications Strategy
  • Leadership and Management

Fellows will work to develop state-based coalitions, host local convening(s), and organize for equality in their community with local faith leaders, organizers, and community members.

Eligibility to apply:

We are seeking fellows from Alabama, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, Mississippi, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin.

We are seeking both emerging and seasoned leaders who are people of faith and understand the value of faith organizing. You need not be clergy to apply. Additionally, applicants should be:

  • Well informed and experienced in the work of LGBTQ justice. (While we will prioritize LGBTQ applicants, allies are welcome to apply)
  • Well informed and experienced in the work of racial justice and anti-racism, particularly Black and Indigenous liberation
  • Able to commit to and uphold the values and tenets of the Institute
  • Have a positive, creative, resilient, and gritty work ethic, as well as a spirit of collaboration and justice (low ego = high impact). We are looking folks ready to do world changing work and have fun along the way
  • Endorsed by a local congregation or organization, or able to submit verifiable recommendation letters


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