It also does not represent my children's perspective, nor my mother's; they think I am funny, but misguided.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
There is a moment when you are pulling your shirt over your head at the end of a day. The shirt is half off and your arms are twisted in the sleeves. You can't see a thing, eyes momentarily veiled by cloth, torso bared. You're inside outed, as my kids would say. To be in the church and be out as queer, it's the same moment: inside outed.
I've been wary for a long time of being out publicly. Y'all know why--everything's at risk for queer folk in the church. The fight over sexual and gender expression is inscribed on queer bodies and queer souls, and I don't like to be used like that. A thousand reasons to hide, to get through, to pass, to duck and cover, to straighten up and toe the line. It's called survival. It's called none of your business. Like many others I've avoided being out, especially in the church, where who and how I love might be used for someone else's righteous satisfaction--as if who and how I love is any different than you.
I was reminded by straight friends that it is National Coming Out Day tomorrow. Many of the people I love are coming out as lgbtq allies. I wasn't going to participate in this day--I have a thousand reasons not to. But when I realized that I was afraid, I got angry. Angry that the church I love has the power to tie my stomach in knots. Angry at the knowledge that people will use this post as a weapon. Angry enough to want to strip the power to control my words and actions from those who believe love is sinful. Angry that teenage boys and girls will come out tomorrow with the world's encouragement, and then the next day find themselves harassed and bullied until they can't stand to live anymore. Angry that I might lose my job.
So then let me claim it and be done. I am queer and I am ordained. And I am unrepentant of both.
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. ~1 John 4:7-88