Today I am guest blogging over at RevGalBlogPals. You can read the whole article here.
“I will never forget an encounter I had several years ago with someone who claimed to be an LGBT ally. When he misgendered a high schooler we both knew, I reminded him that this youth’s pronouns are they/them. He dismissively responded: “Well, I just don’t understand that.” Then he misgendered the youth again.
Misgendering and deadnaming someone is disrespectful and incredibly harmful. As the Trevor Project reported: “Transgender and nonbinary youth attempt suicide less when respect is given to their pronouns and they are allowed to officially change their legal documents.”
Respecting a person’s pronouns and affirmed names can literally save lives.
And the thing is, when we “just don’t understand,” that lack of understanding is a big indicator that we have a lot more work to do.
In the church (and in every community we are a part of), we must do better for our young people and for all our LGBTQIA+ siblings.
Rainbows and inclusive welcome statements are important ways to signal to LGBTQIA+ youth and people of all ages that the spaces they will be entering are safe and welcoming. However, we must be doing everything we can to ensure that these spaces are – in fact – safe for everyone who enters those doors. We need to be continuously educating ourselves and others. We should be asking ourselves how our spaces uplift heteronormativity and cisnormativity and thus who is being harmed and excluded. Then we must work toward change.”
Today I am writing over at RevGalBlogPals:
“White Supremacy is in the White House. It runs deep and wide. And it must be shut down, dismantled, uprooted, and removed.
Many of us have been saying this for years. However, those who are spouting out and implementing white supremacist ideas and policies in the White House continue to be defended, and their policies “justified” by other national and religious leaders. Even after the emails were leaked last week, the White House is still backing Stephen Miller.
So let’s be loud and clear: it is incredibly dangerous and absolutely inexcusable for national or religious leaders to defend, downplay, or remain silent when our president and his advisors hold and enforce these white nationalist beliefs and policies. And it is incredibly dangerous and absolutely inexcusable for us to do so, as well…
This is not a partisan issue. This is not about a political party or a particular politician. This is about the evil and harmful sins of racism and white supremacy.
Because to be silent about such things is to be complicit.”
You can read the rest of the article here
Today I am writing over at RevGalBlogPals:
“I was filled with anger and was absolutely horrified to hear about the abusive treatment that Pastor Betty and her family received when ICE arrested and detained them! I cannot even comprehend the amount of trauma this has and is causing the family, including Pastor Betty’s 5 year-old granddaughter. She needs her grandparents. Her mother needs her parents. Pastor Betty and Carlos need their daughter and grandchild.
Families belong together.
Just because something is our “law” does not make it right and just. Just because something is enforced by our legal system does not mean it should be. (All we need to do is look at our country’s history of enforcing laws that implemented genocide, slavery, segregation, and unequal treatment of women and minorities to remember this clear fact.)
And as Christians, when we see laws that oppress and marginalize others, we must call them out and work to dismantle and reform them.”
You can read the rest of the article here to learn more about what happened and how you can support Pastor Betty and her family.
I have honestly been very nervous about writing and posting this. However, I believe it’s incredibly important… Below is an excerpt. You can click the link to read the rest of the article: “The Pastoral Is Political: Let’s Talk About Bisexuality” on RevGalBlogPals here.
“Bisexuality is incredibly misunderstood, even in some of the most LGBTQIA+ affirming churches and communities. And while bisexuality is becoming more accepted within society, biphobia and bi erasure are still alive and well…
I keep going back to the question I have often received when coming out: “Why does it matter?”
… It matters because it is a part of who I am. When I denied this part of me or kept it silent, I carried a lot of shame and withheld a big part of who I am from God, others, and myself. Yet, I was created in God’s image, I am beautifully and wonderfully made in all of my bi-ness, and God loves me just the way I am. And nothing and no one can take that away from me: not even another person’s disapproval, discomfort, or lack of understanding.
It matters because I do exist. And I should be free to feel proud of and celebrate the person God created me to be, rather than be made to feel so ashamed about who I am that I must keep it a secret.
It matters because there are many others who are not out due to their fear that nobody would understand or accept them. I want them to know that they are celebrated for who they are and that they are not alone.”
Today I’m writing over at Bold Cafe: Women of the ELCA.
“This first Christmas was not a magical holiday homecoming story full of family turkey dinners, carol singing and football games. It did not involve decorating trees, baking cookies and opening wrapped gifts.
Rather, the first Christmas is a refugee story.
And it tells of a young, poor, homeless asylum seeking couple who fearfully flee their country and become residents in a foreign land in order to save their child’s life.
And yet, this story is also a story of hope. It is in the midst of this violent and fearful event when God shows up in the flesh: not as a king who has worldly power, and not as one who is distant and does not understand the plight of the marginalized. Rather, God shows up as one of the marginalized. God shows up in the flesh in a dirty stable, as a vulnerable baby, to a terrified young homeless couple on the margins of society.”
You can read the full article here.
Today I’m writing over at RevGalBlogPals.
“Jesus says: ‘Be alert at all times.’
In other words: wake up and stay woke. And when you see the suffering and injustice of this world, look for the ways God is calling you to proclaim justice and peace and to offer God’s love to those in need. And then rise up and act.
This can be daunting when our news feed constantly updates us on one horrific tragedy after another. The world’s needs just seem too great.
Yet, Jesus does not end here.
‘Hold onto the hope of my return,’ he says, ‘so that your hearts are not weighed down with worries of this life.’ Raise your heads so that you might also see signs of the Kingdom of God that are already present and sprouting up like leaves on a fig tree. Look for signs that God is with us now and that the reign of God is near.
You see, it is necessary for us to find hope as we look for the signs of how God’s Kingdom is already present in this world. No, we must not ignore or downplay the injustice and suffering around us. However, in times such as these, we will not be able to rise up if we only focus our eyes on what is terrible.
So this Advent, may we slow down and choose to be alert.
You can read the full article here.
“So let’s talk about that Bible verse that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions quoted to justify the separation of families at the border…
Many Christians throughout history and across the world actually uphold the theological belief that Jesus is Lord. In Ancient Palestine, this notion of Christ’s Lordship was a radical and political statement. To claim Jesus’ Lordship was to challenge the Roman Empire (and the oppressive “laws of the government”). To profess that Jesus is Lord was to state that Caesar was NOT Lord. In other words, Jesus is Lord over all human authority figures and governmental systems. To claim that Jesus is Lord was basically saying: “I will submit to Jesus and not to any human authority or governmental system that does not uphold Jesus’ law.”
And as Paul urged his readers in Romans 13 (just a few verses after the ones Sessions quoted): “Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. The commandments, ‘You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not covet’; and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbour; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.”
… Separating children from their families is NOT “very biblical.” (Actually, it’s not biblical at all). Rather, it is downright cruel and pure evil!
… Jesus must be weeping as he watches our national leaders and other Christians continue to use the Bible to justify such cruelty and hate!”
You can read the rest here.