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Hello and welcome to Episode 18 of This Little Light Of Mine. My name is James Powell and I’m glad that you’re able to join me for today’s episode, ‘Scapegoat’.

Over the past few weeks on IG and Facebook @MyLightShinesBright our trauma topic of conversation has been around the concept of ‘The Scapegoat’. This is a relatively new term for me, and it seems like it’s a term that resonates with many that are on similar journeys of trauma recovery, addiction recovery, those deconstructing their religious beliefs, people experiencing homelessness and many in the BIPOC and LGBTQ2S+ communities.

A scapegoat is a truth teller in a family, company or community. They are the ones that will verbalize or act out “the problem” that others are attempting to cover up or deny.

Scapegoats are also called many other names… negative, shit disturber, trouble-maker, problem child, killer of dreams and get labelled with words like hostile, angry, crazy or defiant.

What I’m learning is that insecure leaders or people with insecure positions of power need to marginalize or try to sideline the scapegoat. The truth-telling of the scapegoat brings issues to the surface, questions the status quo and calls for actual transparency and radical change in our world.

On today’s episode I’m in conversation with another radical truth-teller and scapegoat, Junia "June" Joplin.

Junia “June” Joplin began serving in church ministry over twenty years ago, at nineteen years old. She has served congregations in the U.S. and Canada, most recently serving as a pastor in suburban Toronto. She holds degrees from Appalachian State University and the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond.

A long-time advocate for greater LGBTQ+ acceptance in faith communities, June made international headlines last summer when she came out as a trans woman and was subsequently fired by her congregation. June has been acclaimed as a stirring preacher and graceful leader. Her sermons and other content can be found on her website,

June is feisty, funny and incredibly vulnerable as she shares part of her story and message of hope and love for fellow truth-tellers.

I hope you grow as much from this conversation as I did.



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