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Gay Spirit Visions records

Identifier: Q127

Scope and Contents

Gay Spirit Visions records, 1978-2010, are organized in four series. Series I, Administrative, 1993-2008, contains documents in both paper and electronic form, as well as Stories of our people: a journey book for men who love men by Andrew Ramer and Raven Wolfdancer. Series II, Conference and Planning Materials, 1978-1981; 1990-2008, includes both planning and descriptive material. Series III, Financial, 2000-2010, primarily relates to the conferences. Series IV, Photographs and Audio Visual, includes photographs and recordings of conference events in various formats.


  • Creation: 1978-2019


Restrictions on Access

Collection is open for research use. Access to some items is restricted for 75 years from the date of creation except in redacted form.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Georgia State University is the owner of the physical collection and makes reproductions available for research, subject to the copyright law of the United States and item condition. Georgia State University may or may not own the rights to materials in the collection. It is the researcher's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and obtain permission from the copyright holder before publication, reproduction, or display of the materials beyond what is reasonable under copyright law. Researchers may quote selections from the collection under the fair use provision of copyright law.

History of Gay Spirit Visions

Gay Spirit Visions began with the Southeastern Conference of Lesbians and Gay Men in 1978. The experiences at the conference inspired a group to begin a series of annual spiritual retreats for gay men at Running Water Farm in North Carolina. Harry Hay called together the first Radical Faerie Gathering there in 1979. Running Water became one of the sanctuaries of the Radical Faerie Movement, along with Short Mountain Sanctuary and the Atlanta Faerie Circle. The Faeries emphasized questioning social structure, honoring one's own individuality, and respecting the freedom and human equality of others. The Faeries organized around a consensual structure that honors the individuals involved and gives consideration to all points of view.

By 1989 Running Water was being surrounded by development making it impractical to gather there. With this need to find another location, the men organizing these gatherings saw this as an opportunity to design more organized and concise meetings. In the past, even though the experience was spiritually powerful, the retreats were also long and disorganized. Maintaining the original founding philosophy of Running Water, Gay Spirit Visions founded a new retreat at "The Mountain," a Unitarian Universalist retreat center just outside of Highlands, N.C., and has been holding conferences since 1990. Harry Hay was invited to give the keynote address at the 1990 meeting, and author Andrew Ramer and poet Franklin Abbott also presented.

Over the years a few traditions began to form, but the conference, as well as other activities, remain open to new inspiration and ever changing creative process. Most of the rituals are Neo-pagan in form but the content is as diverse as their members' personal spirituality. The Fall Conference, the Spring Retreat and the Winter Meditation in addition to the monthly pot-luck dinners, web-site and triannual newsletter, "Visionary," are all used as the means in which to introduce mainstream gay men to alternative spiritualities.


4.8 Linear Feet (in 12 boxes)

Language of Materials



Gay Spirit Visions organizes gatherings for gay men to explore their spirituality and identity in a safe, nurturing, and sacred environment. The records mostly detail the planning, financing, and recording of retreats, and include correspondence, financial records, flyers, invitations, programs, audiovisual materials, and photographs dating from 1978-2010.


Original (2014) accession arranged in 5 series. Addition (2019) not integrated into those series.

Accessing Digital Objects in the Collection

Born Digital Administrative and Photographs files listed in Series I, Subseries B, and Series IV, Subseries A, include an identifier (of the form W127_BD), which can be searched in Georgia State University Library Digital Collections to access the object.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Gay Spirit Visions, courtesy of Jim Jones, August 2014. Later accessions (2019) courtesy of Randall Cumbaa and Cal Gough.

Separated Materials

Separated to the Gender and Sexuality Periodical Collection (Q-GS-Periodicals) see finding aid for access

  1. Gay Spirit Visions Newsletter, vol. 1, no.1, Welcome, February 1995
  2. Visionary, vol. 1, no. 2, GSV -- The Post-Conference Lull, June 1995
  3. Visionary, vol. 1, no. 3, GSV -- The Post Conference Lull, December 1995
  4. Visionary, vol. 2, no. 1, Elders Perch, May 1996
  5. Visionary, vol. 2, no. 2, Elders Perch: A Proud Moment, August 1996
  6. Visionary, vol. 2, no. 3, Elders Perch, November 1996
  7. Visionary, vol. 3, no. 1, Elders Perch, March 1997
  8. Visionary, vol. 3, no. 2, Elders Perch, June 1997
  9. Visionary, vol. 3, no. 3, Elders Perch, September 1997
  10. Visionary, vol. 3, no. 4, Elders Perc December 1997
  11. Visionary, vol. 4, no. 1, Word from the Trusted Elders, February 1998
  12. Visionary, vol. 4, no. 2, Report on a Dialogue on Diversity, July 1998
  13. Visionary, vol. 4, no. 3, Cultivating Sacred Sex, September 1998
  14. Visionary, vol. 4, no. 4, Truth Without Malice, December 1998
  15. Visionary, vol. 5, no. 1, Outrage, March 1999
  16. Visionary, vol. 5, no. 2, A Call to Joy, May 1999
  17. Visionary, vol. 5, no. 3, My Energetic History, September 1999
  18. Visionary, vol. 6, no. 1, Words, Birds, Numbers and Roses, February 2000
  19. Visionary, vol. 6, no. 2, Your Sacred Body, June/July 2000
  20. Visionary, vol. 6. no. 3, Living in Radiance: The Passion Connection, October/November 2000
  21. Visionary, vol. 7, no. 1, Becoming Fully Tribal, Spring 2001
  22. Visionary, vol. 7, no. 2, Gratefulness as a Spiritual Path, Summer 2001
  23. Visionary, vol. 7, no. 3, Telling Our Spiritual Stories, Fall 2001
  24. Visionary, vol. 8, no. 1, More of Our Spiritual Stories, Spring 2002
  25. Visionary, vol. 8, no. 2, Summer Reflection on Nature, Summer 2002
  26. Visionary, vol. 8, no. 3, Embrasing Our Masculine Spirit, Fall 2002
  27. Visionary, vol. 9, no. 1, Work and Passion, Spring 2003
  28. Visionary, vol. 9, no. 2, Music, Summer 2003
  29. Visionary, vol. 9, no. 3, Daily Spiritual Practices, Fall 2003
  30. Visionary, vol. 10, no. 1, Sacred Friendship, Spring 2004
  31. Visionary, vol. 10, no. 2, Forgiveness, Summer 2004
  32. Visionary, vol. 10, no. 3, Gay Elderhood, Fall 2004
  33. Visionary, vol. 11, no. 1, Reclaiming Jesus, Winter 2005
  34. Visionary, vol. 11, no. 2, Revealing Our Authentic Selves, Summer 2005
  35. Visionary, vol. 11, no. 3, Spirituality and Anger, Fall 2005
  36. Visionary, vol. 12, no. 1, Our Sacred Texts, Winter 2006
  37. Visionary, vol. 12, no. 2, Follow Your Bliss, Summer 2006
  38. Visionary, vol. 12, no. 3, Letting Go, Fall 2006
  39. Visionary, vol. 13, no. 1, Magic of Spirit, Winter, 2007
  40. Visionary, vol. 13, no. 2, Finding and Keeping Balance in Your Life as Spiritual Gay Man! Summer 2007
  41. Visionary, vol. 14, no. 1, Addiction, Winter 2008
  42. Visionary, vol. 14, no. 2, Imaginings of the Afterlife, Summer 2008
  43. Visionary, vol. 14, no. 3, Judgment, Fall 2008
  44. Visionary, vol. 15, no. 1, Connection Between Sexuality and Spirituality, Spring 2009
  45. Visionary, vol. 15, no. 2, Turning Challenges Into Blessings, Summer 2009
  46. Visionary, vol. 16, no. 1, Gay Spirit Visions 20 Years, Winter 2010
  47. Visionary, vol. 16, no. 2, Insights, Thoughts and Stories About Same-Sex Relationships by Men of Gay Spirit Visions, Summer 2010

Collection Transfer Note

This collection was previously designated W127, but was assigned collection number Q127 with the formationĀ of the Gender and Sexuality Collection in 2018.

Processing Information

Processed by Hilary Morrish at the item level, Spring 2015. 2019 Accession processed and added by Hal Hansen, August 2019.

Gay Spirit Visions:
A Guide to the Records at Georgia State University Library
Hilary Morrish
June 2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

100 Decatur St., S.E.
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
404-413-2881 (Fax)