I had a lovely time on recently with a couple of friends. We were meeting up to have ‘that church conversation.’ You know the one- about how we are hungry to live a life that has passion and integrity- in the Jesus kind of way- but at the same time Church is ripping us apart.
There are all sorts of reasons for this- many of my friends have gone through it. It is about relationship, theology, styles of worship, boredom, leadership issues. And sometimes just a longing for more. For a better way of living out faith.
My heart goes out to these friends, as it is a painful time.
Don’t get me wrong- I am not advocating leaving church, neither do I think that the hurt and pain we go through in this process is good, like a partially healed wound that we pick at. But the transition to new things often means a process of separation from the old- even if later we are able to find ways to reconnect with the rich traditions that are part of our DNA.
Both of my friends described their own struggles and hurts. Many of them were familiar to me. One of them was not however- because one of these good people was gay.
And as a gay person, their connection to church was always going to be filtered through a different set of experiences. I hope that this person gets the opportunity to tell their own story in full- I have no right to do this on their behalf.
It set me thinking again about how we hurt one another in the name of ‘truth’. And of Joseph Nicolosi and his quasi scientific religious exploitation.
Then this evening, by chance I came across this. A story told rich in grace and humility. From outside the Church. A voice from the margins that we need to hear.