being a gay catholic at 27: taking stock

being a gay catholic at 27: taking stock

(this is a repost from Young Adult Catholic blog by Francis Beaumier)

Today I want to break from the homily-style format of my first two posts and simply take an inventory of what being a gay Catholic means to me at 27 in the Green Bay, WI area. I’m trying to be neither positive nor negative here — just realistic. I’m sure your experience has been different (surely there are better and worse places to be a gay Catholic than northern Wisconsin), and perhaps this post will encourage you to share.

What does being a gay Catholic mean for me right now?

  • My byline has part of the answer. Right now, being a gay Catholic is spiritually not enough for me, which is why I’m also a member of the MCC church. Simply put, my Catholic parish is not gay enough for me, and MCC is not Catholic enough for me, so I need both.
  • It means having walked out during Mass once because you couldn’t take it and wondering if it will happen again.
  • It means opportunities to pray for your enemies (those who hurt you), taking the opportunity, and realizing how dang hard it is.
  • It means staying in touch with other LGBT Catholics and allies who are filled with faith so that you remember the good things about your faith.
  • It means championing inclusive language and female ordination and many other “progressive” things because you understand what it’s like to not always feel like a full member of the church.
  • It means knowing that you can find someone who will officiate your wedding, while at the same time wondering if anyone at your church will want to recognize your anniversary.
  • It means being thankful for a faith that has room for many theologies and that realizes that there are no simple answers.
  • It means needing to talk, and having the opportunity to do so, only to pause a moment to recall if you’re out to the person you’re about to talk to or not.
  • It means being thankful that your priest knows you, knows you have a boyfriend, and has shown you nothing but love.
  • It means being creative
    • … in figuring out what a healthy gay relationship looks like when your church doesn’t always want to talk about it
    • … in interpreting heteronormative scripture so that it applies to you
    • … by whispering “and everything in between” whenever we are told that “male and female God created them”
  • It means being nominated to sing at the cathedral and not being sure you want to.
  • It means being thrilled to hear the phrase “gay or straight” in father’s “all are welcome” speech and yet still wishing church felt more gay-friendly.
  • It’s thinking that Pope Francis’s “who am I to judge” remark is progress but still far from ideal.
  • It means refusing to leave the faith that you love because it’s your faith and you are the church; it means wanting to worship like everyone else, and it means having hope for a future of progress.

About delfinwaldemar

i am a native of miami, fl and i am of cuban and salvadoran heritage. i am a social worker and queer theologian who is passionate about engaging the intersections of religion, sexuality, race/ethnicity, and justice—specifically around lgbtq issues. i have a master in divinity as well as a master of social work. as an activist scholar of faith, i am interested in creating spaces where individuals and communities are safe and challenged to explore identity, expression, gender, and orientation in their complexities. i enjoy cooking, eating, laughing, writing, photography, eating more, “queerying” theology, and spending time with family and friends--especially my dearly beloved (while also driving him crazy). my approach to life is rooted in la lucha (the struggle)—lifting up our stories and experiences to inspire creative and authentic conversations and actions that thrive outside boxes transgressing dominant narratives. i hope this space will provide folks who feel isolated or disconnected from communities, especially religious one, an opportunity to wrestle and reconnect and re-member and simply be with the sacred. being raised roman catholic, i have felt marginalized and alone because of who i am within my church community--my queerness bars me from being able to pursue ordination and so this blog will be a space for me to share my journey of faith through homilies, pictures, liturgies, rants, prayer is that this space become a pulpit and sanctuary, a new way of living into our call to radical holiness juntos...a place where you, me, G-d will caminar juntos y juntas en la lucha. Amen.

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