If I had to pick an exercise for a reconciling event, I would ask people to tell one of the most potent stories they have heard from someone who is different than they are.
For example, since I know I have never been a gay man, I might tell about when I was a junior in High School and a boy who was a senior shared a poem called “I Slipped Upon The Ice” with me, a tale of two boys who slipped on the ice and fell into each others arms. I knew what it meant, but I also knew that I wasn’t the person he was seeking. I did hope he found that person once he left for college.
Or I might tell about the kid from Kettering Ohio who got blasted at the freshman welcome party and after a touch walk back, told me that he was gay. I encouraged him to see a counselor, or at least to go to Jacques (the only gay bar I knew), but the situation didn’t come to a head until he threatened to kill himself and I organized a watch of students for him, helping some of them come to grips with having a gay friend.
What story would you tell? How have you let someone else’s experience into your heart?