The Gender of Activity

A friend posted the picture above on Facebook recently with the following comment:

"Gender equality - we’re getting there. Babies are as much a man’s responsibility as they are a woman’s…"

All I can say is, amen!

Another friend the other day made the following comment in relation to HBO’s Looking, a TV series that follows the lives of 3 gay men in San Francisco [I’ve modified the comments slightly for the sake of anonymity]:

"TV where gay guys are not a) a girl’s-best-friend b) dying c) employed in the fashion industry d) Insufferable / Sean Hayes"

Again, amen!

And yet I also see and hear of churches’ planned men’s hiking weekends away and ladies’ “craft days”. To be honest, I’m all for the occasional gender-specific activity, and I even support the idea that, *generally* speaking, some activities are better suited to a specific gender, *and* even that there is gender-difference (what exactly, I’d like to hash out in more detail than a Tumblr post allows however). 

But surely the ladies would like to go on a hike too some time? I’ve known many women who much prefer it to me and many of my male friends. And also, men doing creative activities surely is a non-issue these days? I’m mean, Sufjan Stevens knitting

(Source: wigglemore, via godinthebrokenness)

"I am being descriptive here, rather than self-pitying. Christians had plenty of opportunities – thousands of years’ worth – to treat gay people with real charity, and far too often chose intolerance. (And still do, in many instances and places.) So being marginalized, being sued, losing tax-exempt status – this will be uncomfortable, but we should keep perspective and remember our sins, and nobody should call it persecution." 

- Ross Douthat, The Terms of Our Surrender

Exquisitely poignant lines by Auden on Hammarskjöld’s experience of ‘homosexuality’ quoted in piece on that Alan Jacobs recommended on twitter:

'A “thorn in the flesh” which convinces him that he can never hope to experience what, for most people, are the two greatest joys earthly life has to offer, either a passionate devotion returned, or a lifelong happy marriage'.

[Click through and read the rest. The whole piece is worth your time].

Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come
We will be as one
God bless our love
God bless our love

Grow old along with me
Two branches of one tree
Face the setting sun
When the day is done
God bless our love
God bless our love

Spending our lives together
Man and wife together


World without end
World without end

Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees
We will see it through
For our love is true
God bless our love
God bless our love

Go and listen to this song by The Postal Service right now if you don’t know it. Takes me back a few years. I’ve edited the lyrics to better reflect the themes of this tumblr. And to be honest, my edited version rhymes better. Also just noticed the liturgical “world without end” (saecula saeculorum) bit. Hmmm, never noticed that before. 


This morning, my Facebook newsfeed is filled with people talking about whether or not it’s okay to discriminate against me and my future family

Catch Up

So, if you are a regular reader of this tumblr - or its associated twitter account - you’ll have probably noticed that my updates and posts have been getting thinner and thinner lately, and less frequent. 

One of the reasons for this - and there are in fact a few - is that I’ve more or less decided where I’m coming down on this whole gay Christian thing. Ha! I say that, but to be honest, I’m not sure I’ll ever have a fully developed position. There are just too many variables and things to think about (and still learn). But for now at least, I have a workable position.

I’m gay and I’m Christian. I fully support gay marriage within the church and without. However, I do respect that some of those within the church cannot support gay marriage within the church - and I respect their right to hold to those views. It just may mean, in the long run, that I wont really be able to attend their churches. For now though, in general, I’ve still been attending these kinds of churches - and it has seemed to work. That said, I’m as prepared as I can possibly be for the day they ask me not to help out, or whatever, because I’m gay. When that day comes, I’ll probably have to leave and find another church. 

I’ve come to my position through much prayer, study, and honest and frank discussion with people who are well informed and whose opinions on the topic I care about.

I also want to say that much of the valuable stuff on these topics is written over at the Spiritual Friendship blog. So, although, ultimately we’re likely to disagree on some points, I find much of what they write engaging, intelligent, and godly. And I’m privileged to (still) call some of them my friends. 

So what happens if it turns out I am wrong? Well, then I’m wrong I guess. God knows how much effort I’ve put into coming to this decision. He knows my heart, my motives, the struggles I’ve gone through to get here. And either He agrees with me - which I suspect He does (otherwise I wouldn’t hold to this position) - or He doesn’t. Either way though his grace is big enough to deal with it. 

The other thing is, that to keep up to date with all of this stuff is tiring, and time consuming, and in some ways, preventing me from living my life. Did I mention the tiring part. I’m tired, so maybe I just need a break from it all. Who knows, maybe next week, you’ll find me tweeting up a storm, or quoting from Eve Tushnet’s or Wesley Hill’s most recent piece, or writing some angry/hurt response to someone who has said something offensive. 

But for now, its break time. Time to just trust God, and go about my little life believing that I can be both gay and Christian, supporting gay marriage while remaining fairly orthodox. 

Study Says Kids Of LGBTQ Parents Are Thriving, Gay Dads Are Exceptional



This article needs no introduction. The piece quotes the study thusly:

"The anxieties about the potentially negative effects for children being placed with gay fathers seem to be, from our study, unfounded … Gay fathers, in particular, are extremely committed to parenting."

Looks like gay parents are FABULOUS! But, you already knew that.

And if you didn’t, please put down the sabertooth tiger pelt and come out of your cave because I want to introduce you to a thing called “fire” and another thing called “equality.”

Also enjoyed this ending quote from the article:

Hopefully, with studies like this, we’ll soon be able to change the first sentence of this post to “The U.S. government is urging more gay parents to foster and adopt … ” How great does that sound?

"By letting the majority vote on the rights of the minority, we are letting the rights of those couples be determined not by the promise of equal protection under the U.S. Constitution but by the religious or moral beliefs of others, who ultimately stand to lose nothing in the matter. What about religious freedom for same-sex couples? … as a gay man, I deserve the religious and civil liberty to marry the man I love, call him “spouse” and have that marriage treated equally under the laws of both the United States and the state of South Carolina."

Ryan Wilson, Whose freedom of religion prevails on same-sex marriage?

(Source: heyodavo)

There are dreams that cannot be / and there are storms that we cannot weather. 

"I must admit to going back and forth on the topic of the New Homophiles. Apostolic celibacy is a great good. The struggle to be faithful Catholics is a great good. Trying to identify with Christ is exactly what we are all called to do. Spiritual friendship could be a good thing though I worry they envision something like Charles Ryder reading scripture with Sebastian Flyte. Can we accept them on their terms? I do not know."

The New Homophiles: A Closer Look | Crisis Magazine

What, indeed, are we to do? We are not under judgment; we judge. We need not worry about acceptance, we only have to decide whom we will, or will not, accept. We keep the gates; we decide who is or is not worthy of admission. We instruct; we have nothing to learn. 

It must be awesome to be “we.”

(via ayjay)

God bless you, Alan.

(via pegobry)

To the John Boswells and Elizabeth Stuarts of the world, I want to insist that Aelred’s vision of spiritual friendship need not, and ought not, be co-opted for the project of overturning traditional Christian sexual ethics. But to my fellow traditionalist believers, I want to place Aelred’s vision as a disturbing question mark over our pastoral approach to the question of homosexuality. If we can’t envision a way for celibate gay Christians to embody his ideal of same-sex companionship today, what is our alternative way of ensuring that those Christians aren’t asked to shoulder a burden beyond what they can bear? Outside the cloister of an idyllic eleventh-century abbey in North Yorkshire, what is our solution to the problem of gay loneliness?

- Wesley Hill, “The Problem of Gay Friendship” (click through and read the whole thing).