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Retreat for Orthodox parents of LGBT children   

Orthodox Jewish parents of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) children will gather April 17 – 19 at Capital Retreat Center in Waynesboro, Pa. for the third annual retreat that addresses their issues and concerns. The weekend program is organized by Eshel, an organization dedicated to fostering community understanding and acceptance for LGBT Jews and their families in Orthodox Jewish communities.

Guided by the theme “Family,” retreat workshops and meetings will focus on the affect of an LGBT family member “coming out” on siblings and extended family.

Among the guest speakers at this year’s retreat is Caitlin Ryan, PhD, ACSW. A clinical social worker who has worked on LGBT health and mental health for 40 years, Ryan directs the Family Acceptance Project at San Francisco State University. She and her team have developed a research-based family intervention model to help families to decrease rejection and prevent related health risks for their LGBT children. Eshel insures its participants’ privacy needs both at the weekend and afterwards. Attendees are asked to sign a confidentiality agreement and are expected to rigorously keep private any personal details or identifying information of the other retreat participants.

Capital Retreat Center is a one-hour drive from Baltimore, Md. and Washington, D.C. Dining is under strict Star-K Kashrut supervision, with Glatt Kosher meats and Cholov Yisroel dairy products.

For more information on the parent retreat visit the Eshel website at

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