Liz Swenson

Liz Swenson

Bethany Theological Seminary, MDiv


Olympia, WA

Undergrad & Major(s)

Evergreen State College / University of Washington MLIS
BA: Theatre, Queer & Gender Studies;
Masters in Library Science in Academic Librarianship & Youth Services

What kind of service experience have you had in the past?

I have been involved with non-profit organizations in my local community and the national denominational level. I spend Tuesday mornings in a local highschool facilitating a support group for LGBTQQI+ youth, I have represented the faith community in solidarity with Transgender rights in the state legislature and have volunteered with the local Dispute Resolution Center. With in the denomination I am active in the LGBTQ+ inclusion conversations and activism and creating safe space for LGBTQ+ and allied individuals. 

How have you been involved in community service/social justice issues while in seminary?

For the last 4 years I have been the volunteer staff person for a non-profit. Open Table Cooperative works within the Church of the Brethren to help the church and its members grow and move forward with a unified heart, continuing the work of Jesus in a spirit of bold, visionary, inclusive love. 

What type of "ministry" do you see yourself doing?

Emerging Ministry/Non-traditional ways of being church

What topics or issues would you be open to sharing about with groups?

Imagining new ways of being the body of Christ (being church vs. doing church), how do we help create church and faith that is accessible to spiritual refugees (those who think church isn't for them or who have been hurt by church), inclusive & open and affirming ministry. 

What were your favorite courses in undergrad? Seminary? 

In seminary I have appreciated the opportunities to reinterpret the Bible with a historical, feminist, inclusive lens. Also enjoyed the readings for Emerging Ministries for a Changing Church.

What's your dream job?

Church Planter/midwife/cultivator of an inclusive community of faith actively reimagining how we are church together. AND I'm already doing it! WildWood Gathering

What do you like to do when you're not working on changing the world?

Cook delicious food. Run. Play outside. Travel with my wife and Goldendoodle Quince.