The Queering Spirit, part 1
An exploration of Queer Pnuematology
Today, theology is increasingly tasked with listening to and holidng up the voices of previously marginalized persons. One of the most recent newcomers to this exploration is queer theology, a discipline which examines Christian belief and practice from the standpoint not only of LGBTQIA+ persons but any who are regarded deviant, transgressive or “other” by the “normal.” This field has struggled to establish itself as legitimately “Christian,” because “queerness and creedal Christianity are usually presumed to be opposed to one another.” As a branch of Christian theology, however, queer theology consciously mines the Trinity for resources that overturn the “normal.” And, as one author suggests, “the Holy Spirit is the queerest of the three persons of the Trinity.”
How does this area of contemporary theology understand the person and work of the Spirit? What contributions to pneumatology might queer theology make? In this series of posts I want to argue that, while there is currently not extensive engagement with the Spirit among queer theologians, a queer pneumatology could potentially illuminate the vital, and under-examined, role of the Spirit as “queering.” After exploring its current, limited engagement with pneumatology, I will offer several suggestions on how queer theology has strong implications for the doctrine of the Spirit, and then attempt a queer reading of the Scripture in support of a vision of the “queering Spirit.” As Western Christianity strives to regain a robust pneumatology, this queer contribution can rehabilitate our sense of the Spirit who “blows where it wills,” leading us beyond our norms into a truer communion of inclusion.
Andy Buechel, That We Might Become God: The Queerness of Creedal Christianity (Eugene, OR: Cascade Books, 2015), 2.
Patrick Cheng, Radical Love: An Introduction to Queer Theology(New York: Seabury Books, 2011), 103.