I recently attended my first drag show. The show itself was wonderful, but what struck me the most was the atmosphere of being surrounded by fellow Queers, something I have rarely experienced in real life.
However, there is also an undeniable truth: a cross has been inflicted upon us. I can’t lie and say being in that chapel at fifteen didn’t feel like the worst kind of humiliation, I can’t lie and say that at the time, the guilt for my unquestionable gayness felt like a heavy yoke, pressing down my neck, drying up my throat, and breaking my tiny gay heart in two.
I think for a very long time many years in fact I’ve sort of lost sight of who I am; of what really matters.
Leaning into the rhythms of Catholicism can help us find deeper theological truths when God is hard to see.
The Church’s crimes are innumerable. From sexual abuse to colonization to racism to cis-hetero-patriarchy. From the Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report to Indigenous Boarding Schools to the LGBTQ+ youth and adults who suffer from depression and suicidal ideation. These songs of praise speak to us of a different Lord.
What we fail to realize is that there are angels all around us who welcome us to their tables and say ”eat, the journey will be too long for you if you do not have bread to eat.”
Am I making a huge mistake? The question haunted me long after I started affirming my sexuality as a gay man, often waiting until I was about to fall asleep to plunge me into an anxious fit.
By turning and re-turning to the message of the gospel we find guidance, hope, and direction to move forward in action. In fact, as LGBTQ2S+ Catholics we are called to bring all our gifts, identities, perspectives, and lived experiences to bear in the essential healing work needed, as well as in finally feeling welcome to the spiritual bounty offered by Scripture and the teachings of the Catholic Church. Now more than ever.
In the Gospel reading, Christ sent the disciples “out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits”. We have the authority to call out ignorance, racism, homophobia, and discrimination. This can be difficult because it also means actively calling ourselves out when we fail to live by the same standards.