Empathy Cafe
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Empathy Cafe

Conversations with an LGTBQ+ Pastor.

Where the rubber meets the road.

I’m somewhere between a peacemaker (good!) and a people pleaser (bad!). That’s one of the reasons I’ve stayed away from discussions on same-sex marriage for the longest time; they ignite passionate statements from both sides (actually, there are way more than two) that end up hurting someone’s feelings.

That’s until Jamie came into the picture. Pastor Jamie Arpin-Ricci is a bisexual author & activist with more than 25 years of experience living at the intersection of faith, sexuality, and justice. Few people are as forgiving, understanding and tactful as my good friend. I find myself in a safe place when we have long conversations that concern the LGTBQ+ community.

After years of avoiding taking sides, I’ve concluded that God allows same-sex marriage. When I told Jamie about it, he acknowledged my journey. He graciously asked me (sharing this with his permission), if I were in a position to do so, would I perform a same-sex wedding between two monogamous, devoted Christians I knew well?

I admit I hesitated for a moment or two.

Then (again, with lots of love), he asked, “Do you believe God intended LGBTQ+ identities?” Jamie continued with more challenging questions, “I suspect you would not deny that […] social, sexual, romantic love between men and women [were] created with intention by God. Do you [believe that] LGBTQ+ social, sexual, and romantic love were equally created with intention by God?”

I hesitated again.

That’s where I am right now, trying to understand God’s purpose for an entire community that has been treated as second-class Christians, even by progressive followers of Christ. I won’t cover my eyes, ears and mouth anymore. I’m where the rubber meets the road, and there’s no turning back. I want to truly experience what it is like to love with no strings attached.

Josue is a retired pastor who doesn’t have it all figured out.

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Josué Sánchez

I rather be excluded for who I include, than included for who I exclude // co-founder of empathy.cafe