For a moment, it felt as if my friends and I could breathe. We could finally say “I’m gay” out loud without fear of losing our academic standing [at BYU]… Then California Proposition 8 happened.
I am Mormon. And I am gay. And all of those identities are sacred. All are holy. All are anointed truths that make me who I am.
I dreaded wearing the costume again. No matter how beautiful it was, no matter how desirable others found it, there was no point of existing inside a costume.
I love my LGBT tribe. Membership isn’t restricted by color. Every shade is welcome. We love and judge by other, hopefully higher, standards. We seek to find the good in each other, where we have common ground, and we seek to build true empathy by listening and learning, sharing and caring.
Affirmation’s first international conference in the Dominican Republic took place in the heart of the oldest section of the oldest European settlement in the Western Hemisphere, and it included representation from Haiti and Cuba.
On July 28, 2017, an offer for the position of Executive Director was extended to and accepted by John Gustav-Wrathall. Gustav-Wrathall started in the position on August 12, 2017. Affirmation has already hired full-time webmasters for its Spanish- and Portuguese-language online content and web sites, and anticipates hiring an English language webmaster and an operations director or directors in coming months. These hires are needed in order to meet the needs of an organization that has experienced prodigious growth worldwide.
This is actually hard spiritual work. Addressing structures of inequality and prejudice go to the core of what it means to be a spiritual being.
I remember entering the Metropolitan Church on Castro’s Eureka Street, where the Affirmation meeting was happening. A full battle was raging inside me. One side said, “Leave now!” and the other side said “Stay!” as I slowly walked up the stairs to the second floor.
Many gathered the week of Jan 13-15, 2017 in Portland Oregon for a two-day conference focused on honoring the uniqueness of the lives and the choices of every member of the Affirmation family, in or out of the Church. Wherever our individual paths lead us, Affirmation is committed to the Zion-like quality of being ‘of one heart.’ Hence the title “Many Paths, One Heart.” Re-live the messages shared or watch for the first time.