On the day my classmates and I graduated from high school, a motivational speaker addressed us all in the assembly hall. “By the time your 10-year reunion comes,” he said, “only one of you will be working the job of his or her dreams.” He looked down and referred to his notes. “About a fifth of you will be happy with your lives. A third of you won’t be, and the rest of you will be somewhere in-between. Also, judging by the size of your year level,” he added, “one of you will be dead.”
At the registration table for Lovelinx, a national conference run by a Christian organisation, an array of educational books and DVDs are on display. Titles include The Battle for Normality, The Courage to Be Chaste, God’s Grace and the Homosexual Next Door and Healing Homosexuality. Their variety risks being overwhelming, but mums and dads can turn their attention to one clearly targeted book, a practical-sounding volume titled A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality.
Lovelinx is taking place in The Factory, a church in Melbourne’s outer-eastern suburbs, which used to be a furniture workshop. The two-day conference aims to share the gospel “in the midst of the homosexuality conflict” and comes with the backing of Exodus Global Alliance, an international organisation representing a range of Christian “member ministries”. Exodus claims it is possible for people to free themselves of their homosexuality through the power of Jesus Christ.