Greg Bourke and his husband were plaintiffs in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that brought the freedom to marry to same-sex couples nationwide in June 2015. Now the men, who were named Persons of the Year by the National Catholic Reporter, are leading a “Pilgrimage of Mercy” to celebrate and recognize LGBT Catholics—and calling for an end to anti-LGBT discrimination.
It’s hard on the heart to realize you’re invisible.
Standing amongst the rows of trees I stared across at my partner. She was smiling, grabbing apples from the trees with an excited exclamation as if each one was a new find, a sparkly treasure, with that same childlike wonder that made me first fall in love with her.
My first kiss was with my next-door neighbor—a young boy in my class. It was back when I didn’t know what it meant to be queer, what it meant to be bisexual, what it meant to be trans. We were together under a flagpole at recess, he told me that the previous night was “Hershey’s Kiss” night at his church.
Shortly after coming out to my church, I began to notice just how many LGBTQ people our congregation had. While my time prior to deciding to come out had been full of nerves and worry, my time after was filled with new friends and role models.
I started working at Believe Out Loud almost five years ago. Before that time, I had no idea that there were places to turn to talk about the intersection of being LGBTQ and Christian, other than to talk about it from the harmful narrative that had been forced upon most of us for far too long.
Coming out is a powerful experience. It is a story that many people in the LGBTQ community have in common. Whether subtle or dramatic, disclosing one’s sexual orientation or gender identity is often met with celebration and praise.
As a Black transman, I get a lot of messages about who I am supposed to be, what I am supposed to look like and what my life should manifest as.