My greatest problem with being a Trans* person was coming to terms with my faith. I grew up in the Southern Baptist church. My earliest memories were of my church. It was always the center point of my existence.
I didn’t think I was being traumatized by my church while I was growing up.
One of the great joys in my life as executive director of Integrity USA, the national Episcopal LGBTQ organization, is being contacted by transgender and gay people looking for help in meeting their needs. I am always thrilled when I can connect people to new friends, educational materials, or welcoming faith communities.
From my teens to my early twenties, I was a good Catholic boy. I went to mass several times a week, which included playing guitar with two different church choirs. In college, I even went to Protestant Bible studies to hear the Word of God.
Today, the effort to repeal the School Success and Opportunity Act—California's new law ensuring that all children have opportunities to do well in school—failed to qualify for the ballot.
My Dad was a progressive pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) for most of his ministry. He preached his last sermon on the Gospel of social justice at the age of 88 and passed on to glory in 2012 at the age of 92.
Throughout my childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood, I strove to follow my Dad’s example.
When I was in high school in rural North Carolina, I wasn't very out. It was the early days of what you might call online social connection. I set up dummy email addresses to create secret identities on usenet forums where I tried to figure out what it meant to be transgender. I had friends I'd never met who I came out to over AOL Instant Messenger.
As we move into this New Year, I would like to share and reflect on three stories from my life that have helped shaped my message for today's blog:
Earlier this year, I was able to attend the Philadelphia Trans Health Conference.