October 01, 2007

GLBT history month speaker cancels due to illness

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. – The Rev. Mel White's appearance at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, on Tuesday, Oct. 2, has been cancelled. White was to present the keynote address as part of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) History Month.

University officials learned Monday that White is in the hospital and unable to appear, said Carl Ervin, coordinator of Student Development Multicultural Programs and Services. Ervin said the presentation will be rescheduled at a later date to be determined upon White's recovery from heart problems.

White is the author of "Stranger at the Gate: To be Gay and Christian in America," and is an award-winning television producer, filmmaker, best-selling author, pastor and seminary professor. He's justice minister for the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches and is career includes ghost-writing for various evangelical leaders including Billy Graham, Pat Robertson, Jim Bakker and Jerry Falwell. He battled depression and struggled for decades before reconciling his Christian faith with this sexual orientation. White and partner Gary Nixon won the ACLU's National Civil Liberties Award in 1997.

Many other activities remain on the calendar in celebration of GLBT History Month, including a keynote address by former longtime professional baseball umpire Dave Pallone, at 7 p.m. Oct. 18 in the Student Center Ballrooms C and D.

For the complete schedule of GLBT History Month events, see http://www.stddev.siu.edu/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=51