Meet the Bloggers

Layton Williams is our Audience Engagement Associate. Her work combines data analysis, creative communications, new media strategy, and relationship building to grow the Sojourners community in both breadth and depth.

She is also a writer, focusing on intersections of faith, justice, politics, and culture with an emphasis on sexuality and gender. In addition to Sojourners, her work has been published by Religion Dispatches, Believe Out Loud, Reconciling Ministries Network, and Presbyterians Today, among others. 

Before moving to D.C. and joining the Sojourners staff, Layton served as the Pastoral Resident at Fourth Presbyterian Church in downtown Chicago. She grew up in Atlanta, then lived in Austin, Texas, for six years where she served as an AmeriCorps volunteer and nonprofit educator prior to attending seminary. She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Georgia and an M.Div from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. She was ordained as a minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) in 2014.

Beyond the realms of faith, justice, and writing, Layton’s interests include improv, pop culture trivia, travel, and discovering new passions. Find her on Twitter at @LaytonEWilliams. 

Recent Posts

Oct 11, 2017

In 1988, LGBT activists Robert Eichberg and Jean O’Leary established National Coming Out Day (NCOD), to be observed on October 11—the anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Gay and Lesbian Rights. According to his New York Times obituary in 1995, Eichberg explained the motivation behind NCOD as this: “Most people think they don't know anyone gay or lesbian, and in fact everybody does. It is imperative that we come out and let people know who we are and disabuse them of their fears and stereotypes.”

Jun 17, 2016

As I sit at my computer writing this, I am still overwhelmed by shock and grief. Like most, I woke up Sunday morning to the news of Saturday night’s horrific shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. Over the course of the day, I followed the updates with growing dread, as the death toll rose and news came out that the victims were primarily Latinx.

Dec 02, 2015

Five years ago, at Christmas, I went home for the holidays and announced to my family that I was planning on going to seminary. For the most part, my family was excited and supportive of my decision to pursue ordained ministry, but a few were resistant.

Oct 06, 2015

Last month, I attended the More Light Presbyterians Conference in Louisville, Kentucky. It was a powerful experience to reconnect with LGBTQ and ally colleagues in ministry and to dream together about what the future of the church looks like beyond just queer inclusion.

A particular highlight of the weekend for me was staying with a good friend who is also a bisexual Presbyterian working in ministry.

Apr 29, 2015

Two years ago, I sat at a trendy coffee shop in Austin, TX meeting with the manager of the It Gets Better Tour: a traveling anti-bullying stage show spun off from the popular LGBTQ video website. The manager had reached out to me a few days earlier and explained that at every stop on their tour, they liked to highlight an It Gets Better video made by a local queer person.

For their Austin show, they wanted to use mine.  

Jun 24, 2014

This past week, I have sat at the Table. Not just any table, but the Table of Christ, around which I have gathered since I was a child.

This week, however, the Table looked different than I have ever imagined. 

Oct 10, 2013

An often told story in my family, even now, is about a time we took a trip to see my grandparents in Alabama. On the drive back to Atlanta, when we were still at least an hour away, I sat up and stated with a sense of importance, “I think I’ll have a glass of water when I get home.” My family thinks it’s hysterical. I think it goes to show that I have never been one for keeping things to myself.

Jun 24, 2013

Two weeks into my seminary career, I was struggling. I was confronting the reality that essential components of who I was—my theological and political convictions, and especially my sexual identity—directly opposed the beliefs of my family and others who I loved.

I lived in persistent fear that I would never feel safe or happy with who I was.

May 24, 2013

On a sunny July day last summer, I sat cross-legged on a musty pillow in a retreat center in the Appalachian Mountains. I was at the Presbyterian Welcome Retreat for LGBTQ persons seeking ordination in the Presbyterian Church (USA).

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