Ray Vincent, Associate Chaplain, University of South Wales
Ray Vincent has worked as associate chaplain at the University of South Wales for 12 years and has been a Baptist minister for over 50 years. Ray is in his 80s and speaks about the fear that he experienced as a young, gay man at a time when homosexuality was classified as both a mental deformity and a crime.
During his time at the University of South Wales he has: become Chaplaincy LGBT Champion; organised LGBT History Month events for several years; created the University of South Wales Staff LGBT Network (in 2015); introduced rainbow lanyards, which are now worn by over 2,000 staff members, and is a strong ally to all in the LGBT community.
In a blog post titled ‘A Gay Christian Minister Comes Out’, Ray shared his experience of coming out to his congregation for the first time, reflecting that: “One or two people in the church already knew I was gay … but this was the first time for me to come out to a whole congregation. It was a lovely experience of being warmly embraced.”