Open Letter to My Transgender Sisters and Brothers

I want to apologize to you.  I want to apologize that too many Christians are choosing fear and hate over love and compassion.  I want to apologize for the awful and intentional mischaracterizations of you.  I want to apologize that this detestable rhetoric is being directed toward our children, and not only that, some of our most vulnerable children.

I want to apologize that all of this is being done in the name of Christ. Web

Once again, our Bible have been weaponized and has been turned against you.  This battering has been and will continue to be relentless.  The message of Jesus is being distorted to demean you and your families.  The people who preach love are turning their backs on you and they are enshrining hatred in our state governments and school districts.  And far, far too often, all of this spills over into violence…too many precious lives have been lost.

My heart breaks for you and your families, and I believe that God’s heart does too.

Jesus spent his life reaching out to those in his world who were deemed unworthy or distasteful.  He repeatedly challenged the religious and political “authorities” who worked to enforce the social norms that cast God’s people aside.  He broke religious and political law and social norms when he reached out and touched a leper, ate with tax collectors and stood in solidarity with the adulterous woman.  The Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) is filled with commands to take care of the poor and to provide hospitality to the immigrant.  The Bible has much, much more to say about compassion, justice and love than about who is “worthy” and who is not.  Don’t let anyone tell you different.

God doesn’t want you to suffer.  God doesn’t worry about whether your assigned biological sex matches your gender identity.  God doesn’t think that you are an abomination or a mistake.  God doesn’t want you to conform to binary gender norms if it hurts your heart and your soul to do so.

God wants you to be you without condition.  God celebrates youGod wants nothing but for you to be happy and content and safe.

As we say in my congregation (stealing from Mother Teresa), God loves you with a Love that will not let you go.

There are many Christians that stand in solidarity with you.  There are thousands and thousands and thousands.  I know it often doesn’t feel like it.  We don’t shout as loudly and we are not well-funded, but we are here.

We are with you because that is what Jesus would do. 

I am a wife, mother and pastor. I serve The Church of the Good Shepherd in Ann Arbor, MI, a vibrant, multi-racial, LBTGQ affirming congregation. I have learned many powerful lessons about Christian community from my church and because I care deeply about the wider progressive church tradition, I feel compelled to share the wisdom I have gleaned from this beautiful place. Thank you, Church of the Good Shepherd for being unapologetically You! I love going to work each and every day.

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