Wednesday 22 February 2012

Hello and Welcome

 Hi everyone and welcome to the BGBC Blog – great to have you here.

I thought I might start off by talking about how much interest Being Gay Being Christian has been generating. It has fascinated me that so many people are finding this topic interesting and want to know what it's all about. Over the last few weeks, I have done several interviews with mainstream radio and the press. You can see a selection of these on the Contacts page on the main website. It's really interesting to see how non-churchy or straight people view these issues.

With some of them, there has been a sense of incredulity, as in, "well why wouldn't you be able to have a faith just because you're gay - that doesn't make sense!" On the outside of the church looking in, the values espoused in the traditional sexuality teachings don't seem to make a whole lot of sense to them. I suggest this is because most people have moved on. It is now common-place for pre-marital sex to occur and no-body much bats an eyelid let alone gets all upset about it. This has changed within my own lifetime. When I was a child, the sixties sexual revolution was sweeping the world and free love was all the rage. However, we learned there was a down-side to free love, as people had to learn the hard way that sex is not just sex and people can get hurt. Yet, this was the period where the youth of the time threw off the imposed sexual values of a by-gone era and tried something new. Most people had girlfriends or boyfriends before they married, and were sexually active in those relationships. This was the natural course of events when one went through adolescence. There was no sense of shame or guilt; none of them felt that what they were doing was evil or malignant or against God. This generation eventually met their spouses and married and the age of marrying a virgin as the only acceptable pathway into marriage was gone. And so it has remained in generations to follow. It is this normalisation process that happens across time I would suggest that is the key to understanding why incredulity is one of the main responses to gay sexuality and faith in the wider community. There is the sense that "hey, we've moved on from all that - if you're gay and you want to be a Christian, then be one. What’s stoping you?"

The other main response is one of quietly going out and buying the book. It is fascinating to see that people whom one might not suspect, actually do have an interest in the topic. Why? I think there are probably lots of reasons. A couple of people I have met have bought the book because they have a gay son or daughter or they know someone who is gay. They want something to read that can give them some answers. Hopefully, BGBC has played a role there. And obviously too, there are some out there who are struggling with these issues themselves. Really, I wrote the book for both such groups. Then there are those who, either gay or straight, have an interest in spirituality or theology in all its forms. I think the straight ones of this group are awesome for being so open to the things the Spirit is doing among us all in His continuing creative act. And I also know that a few people or two have bought the book as a helpful reference guide for times when they are talking to people who might benefit from its pages. Already, I have heard a lovely story of one guy who used the book in this way with a friend and recommended to his acquaintances that they do the same.

So lots of interest. And I hope it continues to grow as the word is spread that BGBC is available. I have more media lined up over the next few months which is great so to use the words of Michael Kirby at the end of his wonderful Foreword, “Another pebble is thrown into the waters of life. The ripples are growing in strength. Their message is reaching the four corners of the earth.”

If you’ve bought a copy Being Gay Being Christian or you intend to, feel free to post a comment as to what prompted you to obtain it. I’d love to know.

Pax et Amor - Stuart

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