Taking Matters into our own Hands (Cape Town, South Africa)

Event Details

LGBTQ-Friendly Bible Stories

The Bible has been used as a weapon against LGBTQ people. For over a decade Peterson Toscano has engaged in a creative and very public dialogue with these ancient texts. His Bible scholarship is sound, but perhaps more importantly, it is filled with humor and warmth.

Not your typical Bible study

IMG_0332In this lively performance lecture, Peterson reveals bizarre, hilarious, disturbing, and revelatory characters and moments from the Hebrew and Christian scriptures.  This is not “What does the Bible say about homosexuality?” No, Peterson delves into the text to find gender outlaws in it, to bust open traditional readings, and provides whole new perspectives.

Bible Scholar and LGBTQ Activist Approved

What has been astonishing about Peterson’s Bible presentations is how well they are received by all kinds of audience members. Traditional Bible believers, progressive Christians and Jews, Bible scholars, atheists, and people who don’t know the first thing about the Bible, are drawn in, entertained and enlightened.

If you want to hear something fresh and new about old Bible stories and also experience outright weird and hysterical performance art, bring Peterson to your university, conference, school, or place of worship.


Peterson’s unique personal journey led him into performance art. 

After spending 17 years and over $30,000 on three continents attempting to de-gay himself through gay conversion therapy, he came to his senses and came out a quirky queer Quaker concerned with human rights and comedy. He asks himself and his audiences unusual and stimulating questions: Who are the gender outlaws in the Bible? What is a queer response to climate change? and How can comedy help us better understand our most tragic losses?

Want some samples?

Praise for Peterson’s Bible performance lectures and his groundbreaking performance, Transfigurations–Transgressing Gender in the Bible

Bible-lovers, gender-transgressors of all sorts, people who love justice! Make haste to see Peterson Toscano's play Transfigurations as soon as possible! His biblical exegesis is insightful and accurate, and you will glean a whole new perspective painlessly because of his charming performance.

Dr. Virginia Ramey Mollenkott
, Author of Omnigender


As a Jewish Studies scholar, educator, and activist for TBLG inclusion in Jewish communities, it was a thrill to see confident transgender characters from the Hebrew scriptures given flesh via the performance activism of Peterson Toscano –and, more importantly, to recognize through his performance that those characters fulfilled social roles in Jewish communities as gender variant folk. Bring Transfigurations to your shul and create an opportunity to dialogue about present-day transgender people in Jewish communities.

Noach Dzmura
, Editor, Balancing on the Mechitza: Transgender in Jewish Community, and Director, Jewish Transitions


As a biblical scholar I'm always a bit skeptical about dramatic interpretations of biblical texts, whether they will truly capture the complexity of the originals; however, Peterson's performances bring to light dimensions of the texts that many, even those of us who spend hours with the text on the page, fail to see. By bringing the stories and characters to life we're able to see the human-ness of the biblical narratives in all its gore and glory.

Lynn Huber
, Associate Professor of Religious Studies--New Testament and Early Christian History, Elon College.


Peterson Toscano's work combines astute readings of the Bible with great story-telling and comedy. He offers interpretations of the texts and insights that even experienced biblical scholars haven't seen before. When portrayed by Toscano, Bible stories and characters come to life with wit, sympathy, and humor.

Dale Martin
, Woolsey Professor of Religious Studies, Yale University. Author of Sex and the Single Savior



Peterson's bag of tricks

Peterson’s bag of tricks

Taking Matters into our own Hands–LGBTQ-Friendly Bible Stories

Tuesday, May 17, 2016 19:30

Good Hope MCC

Methodist Central Mission,  Longmarket & Burg Streets

Cape Town, South Africa


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