Radical Love

Bust out the champagne and toss some confetti because The Avowed Podcast is partnering with Catalyst Wedding Magazine! 

Photographs by Rachel Joy Barehl / @racheljoybarehl

I’ve been following Catalyst since their inception (I actually donated to their Kickstarter!) and being able to work them in our mutual mission to evolve the cultural conversation surrounding love, weddings, and marriage is a literal dream come true. 

Last week I had the pleasure of speaking with Catalyst’s Editor in Chief Liz Susong, and our conversation covered a lot of territory. The Catalyst mission to increase diverse representation in wedding media is no small undertaking, and rather than shy away from the discomfort of renouncing their own egos the founders of Catalyst leaned into their evolution and embraced an intersectional Board of Community Ambassadors.

“Letting the mission be the guide is the best thing for evolving. A lot of entrepreneurial advice is against that, as far as being 'on brand and cohesive.' Yes, we are a business, but at the end of the day the whole reason we created this business to begin with was because of this mission and this value system. That is what is primary. at the end of the day I want to feel like that’s what we did. That’s what we nailed really well.”


In short, they decided to:

Stop. Collaborate. and LISTEN.

“I think being truly diverse and intersectional means, not just showing images or writing of people of color but also, using the correct language that resonates with those people, and also having those people in leadership of an organization.”

“I think it is of complete importance, when you're an ally, to sit back and listen and absorb. To not run to your defense mechanism, or try to prove that you're a good white person.”

I’ll be honest, this is a conversation I am very passionate about engaging in… but I still feel pretty uncomfortable talking about. Racism in particular. I live in a very white state. The liberal bubble that I live in is severely lacking in diversity and I will readily admit that I have a lot to learn. I have a lot of listening ahead of me, and that’s just fine by me. 

Please know that as certain political issues arise in the Avowed exploration I am not going to be the one doling out wisdom or finding the perfect words to describe what it is to suffer at the hands of white privilege. Part of guiding you through this landscape of modern love is going to be handing the reigns over to those who know and understand more than me and I would encourage you to follow suit. Get comfortable with discomfort, and settle in for some good old fashioned listening.

“We realize that all of these political issues really live in us. They live in our love stories, and our sex lives, and in our marriages.”

Quotes by Liz Susong from Episode 5 "Radical Love" 

Liz + Adam's Wedding

Photographs by Rachel Joy Barehl

Hiking the pacific crest trail

Photograph by:  Betty Clicker  and  Melodie Ann Photography  from the first (Un)Convention collaborative styled shoot!

Photograph by: Betty Clicker and Melodie Ann Photography from the first (Un)Convention collaborative styled shoot!

Jasmine Snyder