All About Trey

Life, Travel, Adventure

A Conversation about God (Part 1)

I wrote this a couple of weeks ago and meant to publish it, but didn’t. It seems appropriate now:

Last Sunday I went to church twice. Not my usual routine for Sunday, but I had heard that Bishop Robinson was in town preaching that the Church of the Epiphany and I wanted to him here speak. I wasn’t sure if he would address the latest issues in the Anglican Communion, the results of the House of Bishops meeting in New Orleans, or what, but I wanted to go listen to him speak. And then I went to my normal service at St. Thomas’.

But I had company with me that weekend. Susan, a friend of mine from the Navy and her partner Mary (not their real names since they are both active duty) were in town seeing the sights and crashing at my place. And when I mentioned that I was getting up early to go listen to Bishop Robinson, Mary asked to come with me. And I of course said yes!

So we drove down to Epiphany and since we found parking rather quickly (no mean feat in DC), we had time to sit in the pew and chat. We started comparing churches and Mary goes to the protestant chapel on base pretty frequently and sings in the choir there. I explained that I really like my church and that it was very open and inclusive and I felt very welcome there. And Mary said that she liked her church, but that obviously she wasn’t out there, and not sure how open and inclusive they would be.

And then she said, “You know, I know God I loves me, but sometimes I wonder if he really loves me 100%? If he loves me less because of who I am?

I immediately turned to face her squarely, looked her in the eye, and said, “God loves you the way you are. There is no partial love from God. God loves you 100%. We are all God’s children.”

We talked some more and then the service started. After the service, which was different, but nice, we went back to my condo and had breakfast. Then she and Susan went off to explore DC and I headed to St. Thomas’.

As I sat in St. Thomas’, thinking about our previous conversation, and thinking about how Mary felt, I started to get mad. Really mad. I was furious that Mary felt that way. The way Mary feels is the result of people (and a lot of whom are Christians!) who continue to denigrate and denounce GLBT people. Oh, sure it’s “love the sinner, but hate the sin” and all that crap, but I think that’s just a nice little cover for their homophobia. And then I think of BO33, the Dar Es Salam communiqué, and the recent announcement from the House of Bishops. The Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion are saying that GLBT persons are children of God, and that we are full participants in Christ’s Church, but . . . . you can’t serve as Bishops and we can’t bless your relationships. So we welcome you, and we want you to be part of the church, but only about 80% compared to straight people. So no wonder Mary sometimes felt that God didn’t love her 100%. That’s the message she gets from The Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion, and the larger world around her.

And that’s why it’s important and I tell her that God loves her 100%. That we tell every GLBT person in the church, or in the world at large, that God loves them. That despite all of the machinations of the church, all of the homophobia and hate in the world around us, that there is Good News: That God loves us all!