Fernando Alcántar was born and raised in Mexicali, Mexico,
into a Catholic family and converted to evangelical Christianity
through the visit of American missionaries. He started his involvement in Christian leadership as a youth leader for his local church and ascended to become a statewide denominational leader for the Foursquare church in the state of Baja California. He immigrated to the United States as a teenager and eventually transferred to Azusa Pacific University (APU), the second-largest evangelical college in the nation. He worked at APU’s Mexico outreach program for eight years as Senior coordinator of North American Partnerships. There, he oversaw hundreds of churches in Mexico and helped mobilize over 9,000 missionaries a year from all over the United States and Canada. He left APU to take the role of Director of leadership Development for Young People for the California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church (UMC). “Cal-Pac” oversees almost 400 churches for about 83,000 members across Southern California, Hawaii, Guam, and Saipan. He oversaw youth and young adult ministries across the region and served as an ambassador to ethnic caucuses. He was considered by many as the spokesperson for emerging Methodism. It was towards the end of his term with the UMC that Fernando reached the twilight of his theological process out of Christianity. He left the religious community and returned to higher education in the state of Utah—the place where he finally realized his identity as a gay man. He resigned in September of 2013 after constantly being personally and professionally attacked for issues administrators admitted were related to him being non-Mormon and his sexuality.
Fernando has written a book of his memoirs titled To the Cross and Back: an immigrant’s Journey from faith to Reason. once a high-profile religious leader, Fernando is coming out as both gay and atheist—“gaytheist”—to help strengthen a national narrative of understanding, tolerance, and acceptance. He also wants to help give a voice to those hiding in the shadows, who are afraid to publicly question their religious, cultural and sexual identity for fear of isolation and retaliation.
AU’s Clothes For The Homeless Collection Basket
Please don’t forget you can bring your gently-used shoes, clothing, backpacks, etc. to the meeting. Your donations will help the non-profit Food On Foot provide for the poor and homeless. Look for a container clearly signed “Clothes For The Homeless.”
Complimentary lunch, coffee, tea, and drinks are provided after the talk. We’ll get a chance to meet, talk and get to know one another.
This meeting open to the public. Non-members pay $5 for entry, members have free entry.
General Meeting on February 25th at 11 a.m. will be held at the new CFI building, 2535 W. Temple Street in Filipinotown northwest of Downtown Los Angeles. The building is on the northeast corner of Temple and Rampart. The entrance to the gated parking lot is on Rampart.
By Public Transportation
From the Vermont/Beverly Red Line Station, take the Metro 10 bus east on Beverly Blvd. (towards Downtown) and exit at the Temple & Rampart stop. Or, from the Westlake/MacArthur Park Red Line/Purple Line Station, take the Metro 603 bus north and exit at the Rampart & Temple stop.
From the northbound 101 (Hollywood) Freeway, take the Rampart (5A) exit. Turn right onto Bellevue. At the next intersection turn right on N. Coronado Street. Immediately after going under the freeway turn right on London Street. In one block, turn left on Rampart. The parking lot will be on your left before you reach the traffic light on Temple. From the southbound 101 (Hollywood) Freeway, take the Benton Way (5A) exit. Go straight through the intersection with Benton Way. You will now be on London street. In two short blocks turn right on Rampart. The parking lot will be on your left before you get to the traffic light on Temple.
About 80-100 people attend our meetings so you’re sure to have a good time and meet lots of new people.
We need your support
We are a not-for-profit organization. Your donations to Atheists United and membership make these meetings possible.
Note: Registration begins at 10:30am