Nearly 350 Seventh-day Adventist Church leaders, pastors, academics, and human services experts have gathered in Cape Town, South Africa, for a four-day summit intended to help the worldwide Church better address the experiences of homosexuality and alternative sexualities.

Titled “In God’s Image: Scripture. Sexuality. Society.” the conference at Africa’s southern tip is intended to be “a conversation with key people in the global leadership of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, to gain a greater understanding of the issues surrounding alternative sexualities, and to counsel together regarding the challenges the church is facing in this area,” organizers said.

Each of the denomination’s 13 world divisions has sent a delegation of at least 20 persons composed of senior administrators, theological and social science scholars, and “frontline personnel”—pastors, chaplains and human resources directors—to the intensive event that began March 17.

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