Reconciling In Christ

The Gustavus RIC Coalition is currently seeking the opinions of the Gustavus Community concerning faith, sexuality, and RIC. We invite all of the community, including alumni, to post to our blog or submit opinions directly to the RIC Coalition. These opinions are being collected as part of Phase II of the RIC Process, and will be utilized in defining our community's stance toward RIC.

Meet the Coalition LeadersWe want to hear your opinion about RIC

Bretton, Katie and Bill

Started in Spring 2007, Breton Harris and Katie Mason set out to initiate the RIC process at Gustavus Adophus College.

Breton Harris, now a senior political science major graduating in december of this year, decided to initiate the RIC process after taking part in a Faith/Religion/Culture class here at Gustavus.  Breton recalls that growing up, faith played an important part in his development and his journey into adulthood.  He strongly believes that RIC will open the doors of conversation and, at the very least, ensure that the individuals who make up The Gustavus Community will be more intentional with their opinions toward sexuality, GLBT students, and faith.

Katie Mason is a Junior Communication Studies and Women Studies major.  Katie joined the Coalition last Spring in hopes to raise awareness about RIC.  Her biggest hope is that this whole process will spark  discussion to ultimately bring Gustavus to RIC status.

Bill Klein, is a recent addition to the RIC Team joining Fall 2007. He is a currently a sophomore and planning to be a Computer Science and Management double major. Despite a heavy academic load, Bill is activly involved with different organizations and sports across campus. He is an Officer in the GLBT group- Queers & Allies, he serves on the Diversity Leadership Counsel and is a Collegiate Fellow in Norelius Hall. He is also a diver on the Gustavus Swim and Dive Team.

The RIC ProcessWhere is Gustavus Heading?

Gustavus 3 CrownsThe process can be divided into three phases.  Phase one, is all about seeking student interest in becoming an RIC institution.  The RIC Coalition decided that the best way to proceed would be to initiate a petition within the student body requesting that the president and the board of trustees move forward with investigation in the RIC process.  The petition was conducted over a one-week period in April of 2007, and was extremely successful.  (For a breakdown of the final petition count, please see the table at the bottom of this page).  From the results of the petition, the Coalition (with the agreement of the presidents office) has decided that it is time to step into phase two of the RIC process. Phase two is probably the most lengthy and essential part of the RIC process because during this time the community is supposed to be communicating about the relationship between sexuality and the Lutheran faith.  The RIC Coalition has taken on the objective of finding the means to gather the opinions of students, alumni, and faculty and then arrange those opinions into a discourse with one another.  We believe that starting an online communications portal, in which everyone from the Gustavus Community will be able to create blog submissions about their opinion, is a vital necessity in reaching alumni.  Moreover, we hope that soon the communications portal will open online discourse between alumni and students in an attempt to rally further participation in phase two. The final phase of the RIC process will of course be some kind of presentation, in which the opinions and voices of the Gustavus Community are collected, processed, and consolidated before being presented to the president and the board of trustees.  Several members of the board have explicitly stated their excitement to witness the goings on of the discussion phase.  This is truly an exciting time for Gustavus.

The Benefit of Collecting Opinion- Sexuality and Faith

The most centric goal of the RIC coalition, is to spark meaningful conversation around the relationship between sexuality and faith. We are not as concerned about achieving RIC status for Gustavus, as with the process of opening our community to discussion on this issue.  Too often, the relationship between faith and sexuality is ignored leaving the issue untouched, further marginalizing GLBT members who strive to participate in an institution connected with the Lutheran heritage.  We believe that all opinions brought to the attention of the community carry intrinsic value, simply because they contribute to the communities understanding of faith and sexuality. Therefore, the RIC Coalition's lengthy task will be attempting to piece together opinions of students, alumni, faculty, and administrators to decipher this communities position on sexuality as a faith-related institution. 

We have before us, the opportunity for growth as a faith-related community.  With the RIC process underway, every opinion will effectively shape the direction of Gustavus for years to come.



One of the Greatest tragedies I see before me today, occurs when people of the GLBT community feel betrayed, shunned, or marginalized by Faith.  There has to be a way to construct a beneficial relationship between sexuality and faith that allows GLBT members the right to practice fulfilling religious belief while helping faith escape the stigma of exclusion that it so often falls victim to...

It is my belief that RIC is such a relationship.. it strives to create an inclusive, accepting atmosphere while asking members of the community to discuss their own beliefs on the obvious connection between faith and the construction of sexuality.

Do we choose to carry the message of Jesus... one who turned to the outsiders and made them welcome?  Or do we choose some other reading because of sexuality's role in scripture?


Gustavus has been attempting to find ways to further incorporate the Lutheran tradition into the campus community for many years now.  However, as Gustavus moves into a closer relationship with faith, it must be able to handle some of those moral questions related to faith.  We believe that human sexuality is such a question that must be answered before Gustavus can truly impact this community. 

We are extremely concerned with gathering as many opinions as possible. If you prefer not to post to the blog page, we would appreciate an e-mail submission. You may submit a private submission to the address Here.

RIC Coalition Central Mission

  • To open the Gustavus Community to discussion about sexuality and its              relationship to faith.
  • To incorporate the opinions of alumni into this discussion phase.
  • To help shape the Gustavus Community as it moves into a closer relationship faith.
  • To Aid individuals within the Gustavus Community who are struggling with their own beliefs about sexuality and faith.
  • To push forward with the RIC process.

Upcoming Goals

  1. Facilitating a "button drive" on campus to create interest and spread a common language about RIC throughout campus in order to encourage the participation of students.
  2. To contact Alumni about supporting the RIC Coalition more directly.
  3. To work with the Student Senate to facilitate Campus Caucuses and create a better sense of awareness.
  4. To work more closely with faculty to encourage their participation in discussion.

RIC Petition Counter (Spring 2007) Total number of petitions signed: 537

Student Class Number of Petitions

This is the final tally for petitions in favor of moving forward with RIC.  Petitions were delivered to the President's Office in May of 2007.