I had the privilege of being asked to speak at the WeConnect women’s event that preceded the Gay Christian Network Conference in Portland. I was both honored and humbled to be asked – I guess it helps when you’re friends with a bunch of the folks organizing the event. I also felt myself faced with a dilemma. As a mainly straight, married to a man for 20 years, gal who serves as an advocate for the LGBTQ+ Christian population, I am acutely aware that my role ought to primarily be about seeing LGBTQ+ Christians being given a platform and opportunity to lift their voices and share their stories.
In my work with New Direction, this is often a point of tension. In many of the church contexts we are serving, there is still the reality that they will give a platform to someone like me much more quickly than to my LGBTQ+ colleagues or members of our Generous Spaciousness community. I suppose the thought is that I’m “safe enough” in that I live the heteronormative life of privilege that the majority of our church folk do. And while I might lament this, in our current context among Evangelical churches this is simply the way it is right now. I try to live in the both/and of going and speaking and extending platform whenever I can.