Author, Speaker, LGBT Ambassador and Bridge Builder
Anthony was a leader in the Assemblies of God and high profile preacher in Australia’s mega-churches. For 22 years he tried to change his homosexuality through psychiatric treatment, exorcisms, and ‘ex-gay’ programs’. Although a husband and father for 16 years, eventually he had to admit that nothing had changed. In 1991 faced the toughest decision of his life. Be true to himself and lose everything he held dear; or live a lie.
Anthony’s autobiography, ‘A Life of Unlearning’ (third edition to be released 2012) was awarded the SGLBA’s ‘2004 Book of the Year’. He has appeared on national television shows such as ‘60 Minutes’, ‘Channel 7’s Sunrise’, ‘The Morning Show’, ‘Mornings with Kerri Anne’, the ABC’s ‘Hungry Beast’ and is called upon by radio and print media for comment.
Anthony is co-founder of Freedom2b. Under his six year leadership, Freedom2b has become Australia’s foremost organisation for LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex) people from Christian backgrounds.
Currently, Anthony is the founder and CEO of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International (ABBI). ABBI is committed to overcoming the unnecessary suffering caused by ignorance and misinformation about sexual orientation by providing education, resources and creating dialogues with churches, leaders and denominations.
In recognition of his national and global impact, Anthony Venn-Brown was twice voted one of The 25 Most Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians (2007 & 2009), in 2011 was one of four finalists for the ACON Community Hero Award and was awarded Life Membership for Outstanding Service by the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Business Assocation 2012.
Anthony’s journey from high profile, ‘straight’ Christian preacher, resolving the perceived conflict between his faith and sexuality and now an ambassador for the LGBT community has given him a profound and unique insight. Anthony is often invited to speak on a range of topics including sexuality, the LGBTI community and the conflicting convergence of homosexuality and the Christian church.
Some of his specialities are:
- Homosexuality and Christianity
- Specific issues faced by LGBTI people from religious backgrounds
- Ex-gay Organisations – Can a person change their sexual orientation?
- Mixed Orientation Marriages – Married and gay - Looking at the options
- Coming Out – Why? When? Where? How?
- Same Sex Orientation – The research
- Living an Authentic Life – Gay or Straight, everyone pays a price to be true to themselves
- ‘A Life of Unlearning’ – an inspiring journey of reconciliation and authenticity
- LGBT history and culture
- Can We Talk? How historic changes are being created in the Australian Pentecostal and Evangelical worlds.
- The Velvet Closet – how to destroy homophobia in 24 hours
Anthony is a powerful communicator and his presentations are always informative and inspiring. He provides a comfortable space where people can ask the often-unasked questions. Audiences quickly realise Anthony’s credibility comes from being well researched and profound personal experience.
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