"Prodigal" Gay Son...
I've not shied away from sharing my spiritual journey in the past. I seem to be at a crossroads again. Maybe I'm a spiritual flip-flopper... though I'd rather be considered that, if it means I'm actively searching for truth, rather than sitting on my smug behind in some pew, never having questioned, never having left the safety of my "holy bubble."
I'm considering returning to the church, after several years of inactivity and a couple years after I outright renounced it. I miss the fellowship. Though I've belonged to a circle, coven, whateveryouwannacallit, for nearly two years, our meetings tend to be irregular these days due to the personal issues of other members, and conflicted schedules. And the worship experience is at times underwhelming.
Worship. I miss liturgy. Aesthetics in worship are very important to me. That's not slamming low-church folks, but Baptist, charismatic, or garden variety Protestant services just have never appealed to me. Few churches have been able to meet my high aesthetic standards. I loved and miss the Orthodox liturgy, but the antigay theology of Orthodoxy--as well as bad memories of priests scolding me and urging my repentance of same-sex urges--makes it impossible for me to return. Likewise, Roman Catholicism is not an option to me, because I refuse to support or belong to a faith that refuses to bless the whole of me, including how I love. (I actually went to a Catholic mass last weekend, trying to keep an open mind, and no spiritual fireworks went off. I left early.)
Having said that, I could never be the kind of... I dread to say it... "Christian"... that I once was. I don't think Christ is the only way, and I surely don't think monotheism is the only way; not after glimpsing the violent history of monotheistic religions. While acknowledging the few universal truths, good advice, and beautiful passages in the Bible, I do not regard it as God's infallible word. I look at much of the OT especially, and am disgusted by what I see being marketed as "the law of God." I think 99% of that stuff was more the law of humans at that time... I'm suspicious of any and all religious "scriptures," and can only shake my head at how theologians waste lifetimes and centuries debating their meaning. I have no intention of completely giving up my current spiritual practices, no matter what. If a church can't handle the fact that I'm a gay guy who's into drumming, tarot cards, and nature veneration, well, then they can kiss off.
This is nothing certain. I'm not signing the dotted line today, nor will I be reciting the sinner's prayer, repenting of the last two years. Maybe I just need to get back on Paxil, or maybe this is a phase. These are just my musings, my feelings... where I am right now in my walk. Ironic, considering Anne Rice's very public move in the opposite direction for reasons that most if not all of us could understand. But, yes, a big part of me misses the church. I've long wondered how any self-respecting LGBT person could be part of religions like Christianity, which by and large seem to hate our homo-guts. But of course, plenty of us already are and long have been fighting for equality from within, as well as without, organized religion.
I've already contacted two local Anglican pastors by email. The Episcopal Church not only has lovely worship services, especially its parishes of Anglo-Catholic leanings, but is a place where I feel I could be accepted for who I am, sexually and theologically.
Thoughts are most welcome, as always, if you've been kind enough to read this far. Love and peace. )O(
"And though I may not know the answers, I can finally say I am free. And if the questions led me here, then I am who I was born to be." --Susan Boyle
"If all fools could fly, the sun would be eclipsed forever." --Dutch proverb