This past summer I had the honor giving a series of Bible talks at New England Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers.) These Friends know me as a quirky queer Quaker who dips into the Bible with comic readings that hopefully lead to thoughtful conclusions. Standing in front of a room of people who have been so instrumental in my life–as a person of faith, as a queer person of faith, and as a queer person of faith with a leading to talk to the public–I felt free to be vulnerable.
One of the talks I gave wove together narratives from the Gospels about tombs–Jesus’ resurrection, Lazarus’ deliverance from the tomb, and the provocative story of that man who lived among the tombs. Mary and Martha play key parts in my storytelling as I look at the subversion of gender roles in the Bible. But perhaps the most meaningful part for me was when I talked about coming out as a form of resurrection. Much like Lazarus, I needed to be unwrapped.
In telling my own story, I reflect back on my days at a Pentecostal Holiness Church I attended in NYC and the powerful minister who revealed to me that he too struggled with desires for other men.
I am happy to share this talk with you. The original is found at the New England Yearly Meeting site. Below is the same talk on SoundCloud. I am glad I got to quote from John Henson’s excellent book: Good As New: A Radical Retelling of the Scriptures.
featured image: The 71 steps by David Nash at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park taken Sept 2015 by Peterson Toscano