Marcella Althaus-Reid, Intro to The Queer God
Where is the salsa in Contextual Theology? Suppose that, as in the poem from Brunilda Vega, someone tells you that Latinas go to the same bar that has been recommended to you. Suppose that you are feeling lonely and think that the world is not a loving place anymore. Then you decide to go to the bar after praying your novena to your saint, or to the Virgin Mary. Perhaps you are asking San Antonio for a lover and you know that at the door of the bar nobody checks for rosaries or religious stamps in your pocket. The same can be said when you are at the door of the church. They don't ask you for that old love letter that you still keep in your bag neither do they realize whose hands your loving hands like to hold. Now suppose that in your mind the church and the Latina bar somehow get mixed up with fragments of memories of the Nicene Creed and of a Christ who died of love for you some time ago contesting the fact that nobody else seems to be dying of love for you anymore. You are thinking about a religion of courage and you go to the salsa bar where a Latina may be friendly with you. But then, torn between love and rosaries, you may wonder what life would be if you were to love her. Remembering the poem from Vega, you know that in the end, you may pray for God's forgiveness: 'Forgive me for loving you the way I do'. But we need also forgiveness for loving God too.
What goodness and righteousness would prevail if you were now in love again, and in love with one whom you are (ecclesiastically) not supposed to love? And where would God be in a salsa bar? Where would the church stand on all of this? And where would your Latina sisters be anyway doing their Contextual Theologies? Are they not loving each other on Sunday evenings, between novenas? Why not?
There are many sexual dissenters whose theological community is made up of the gathering of those who go to gay bars with rosaries in their pockets, or who make camp chapels of their living rooms simply because there is a cry in their lives, and a theological cry, which refuses to fit life into different compartments. The question is, ¿Va a haber amor? (Will love prevail?). The search for love and for truth is a bodily one. Bodies in love add many theological insights to the quest for God and truth, but doing theology from other contexts needs to consider the experiences and reflections of Others too...
The God who has come out, tired perhaps of being pushed to the edge by hegemonic sexual systems in theology, has made God's sanctuary on the Other side. Our task and our joy is to find or simply recognize God sitting amongst us, at any time, in any gay bar or in the home of a camp friend who decorates her living room as a chapel and doesn't leave her rosary at home when going to a salsa bar.
Merv Kitashima, on resilience
Carter Heyward, Introduction to Touching Our Strength: The Erotic as Power and the Love of God
I had to prepare for this and
not just by reading Lorde and Weeks and Raymond
or my own stuff
I had to do more than think
About “sexuality” “theology” “ethics”
In order to come to this
I had to connect with you
through memories fantasies humor
always worthy of respect
In order to come
I had to get myself some daffodils
and wait for them to open
and I had to lie down beside my old dog Teraph
and rub some comfort into his worn out legs
and make myself some Mocha Java decaf
with just enough milk to cut the acid
And then I had to sit for the longest time
Denise ANC Black Sash
and I had to ask myself how
we are connected to these movements
for survival and joy
and I had to believe that we are
In order to come
I had to write a poem about hiding some sisters and their cats from the fascists
a love poem it was
and then hold in my heart an image of my month-old niece
my namesake whom I love and have not seen
and spend some painstaking time with friends
and playful time as well
and I had to be alone for a good long while
for my roots to secure
In order to come
I had to make love
and if I had not had a precious woman
to caress my lusty flesh
and bring me open not only to her
but to myself and you
I still would have had to find a way
to enter more fully
the warm dark moisture
of One in whose hunger
for survival and passion
for friends and movement
for justice and yearning
for touch and pleasure
we are becoming
Raven the Acid Bath Princess of Darkness
Warsan Shire...For Women Who Are Difficult to Love...
Eartha Kitt...on Love and Compromise...
Nawal El Saadawi...Creativity, Women, Dissidence
"Nawal El Saadawi...has five decades of intense feminist, political, and social commitment. She's a physician, psychiatrist, university teacher, and always an uncompromising writer, speaking out against political, patriarchal, neocolonial oppression."