Thursday, August 2, 2012

Twist in Transgender Pastors Story Reaction

Transgender Pastor Sister Paula
Photo Credit: Sister Paula Archives
by Rev. Austin Miles

Christina Johnson, a transvestite, raised a challenge regarding my story: Transgender Pastors Coming to a Church Near You. That story can be found on this news-site. A genuine note of love was sent to her in return.

An astonishing response from a member of GLBTQ, hereinafter to be called, The Community, was fired off immediately to be published in The Christian Post. Here is what, "GravityWings" had to say:


5:47 PM on July 23, 2012
"Your attempt to reframe your obvious hatred for LGBT people as a deep love for them is not working. I read your original article, and it's clear that you're not the kind, loving person you set out to present yourself as. This was clear from the very first sentence of your article. 

"You go on to demonize LGBT people, all but blaming us for your failing churches, insulting us, and putting so many things in "scare quotes" such as "same-sex 'weddings,'" "transgender 'minister,'" and in this post, even the word "trans-persons." 

"You claim that trans people only "pretend to be another sex," which shows both your ignorance and your bigotry. You say that trans people experience "sexual confusion," whatever that means. 

"You claim that, for LGBT people, merely existing publicly is flaunting our sex and forcing it upon others. You say that to be gay is to "give in to every lust." 

"At the beginning of this post, you said that LGBT people are "looking for any reason to be offended." How could we not? When you insult us, make petty remarks (Pink chalice? Really?), and deny who we are in favor of your antiquated idea of 'normal,' you can bet we're offended. 

"Offense doesn't "come automatically" when "articles referencing 'gays' [scare quotes again!] strictly reports [sic] it without endorsing the gay lifestyle." Offense comes when you offend and insult us, treat us as nothing more than sexual deviants, and ignore an entire group of people, not to mention scientific consensus, in favor of your convenient narrative.

"Furthermore, it is clear from your responses to Christina are clearly an attempt to backpedal your way to the moral high ground, by casting your hatred and bigotry as treating everyone "with love, respect and understanding." 

"You told Christina that "I am NOT your enemy." Yes, you are. You are the type of person that we have had to fight every step of the way to get as far as we are now. You are the type of person who tries to prevent us from going any further. You are the bigot, the hateful man, that stands on street corners and screams into megaphones. 

"Do you want to know why all of those Christian denominations are losing adherents? It's because of people like you. Poll after poll shows the majority of Americans support gay marriage, and people like you, with your hateful rhetoric, are driving them away. You're the one "missing the point," Reverend.:"

It's really too bad that GravitysWings didn't have the opportunity to get some things off his chest. The peculiar fact is that GravitysWings is the kind of individual who demands that the world love and accept anything gay, and then, respond with hate to one who comes with an olive branch. Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose?

As for the offense taken at my use of the word, "trans-persons," that is a word I had never heard until Christina used it in her email to me.

You state that I'm "a bigot, hateful man that stands on street corners and screams into megaphones." How's that again? I don't even scream from the pulpit and I have never stood anywhere with a megaphone. However, I strongly caution you to not even THINK of using such terms again when you address me.

By the way, I have done gay and transgender funerals. Those who fill the chapels come to me afterwards with tears in their eyes to thank me.

 It is known that if that nutty Phelps Family from Kansas ever tries to picket or disrupt any service I do for a gay, I will personally escort them by the arm to the center of the highway that runs past the cemetery and leave them there. Plus, I will file felony charges against them for disrupting a religious service.

I do love people, teach chaplains to bring love into every situation, but I am also very stern with those who attack without reason.That will be dealt with effectively. However, being stern, I am also very fair. So don't try to make an enemy of one who is not.

On the plus side, a reader of Worth Reading, that also published my story, emailed this response:
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 Stephanie Snyder Staker · Top Commenter
    "This is the most thoughtful, loving response to "Christina" - thank you, Rev. Miles. You are so right - we should all learn to be more private and not just about sexual matters. Speaking whatever comes to mind makes us look foolish, for one thing.

 "I hope Christina realizes and receives what you said to her. There was no condemnation from you at all - I agree with everything you said. I will continue to pray for all those who sin including myself! :) God knows I sin every day whether intentionally or unintentionally. 

"The wonderful thing about the God we serve is that He does forgive and forgets. I am so tired of the hateful responses (although your writer wasn't hateful - want to be clear on that) to reasonable dialogue. If I don't agree with someone, rather than that person saying "we'll just have to agree to disagree", I am called foul, filthy names and threatened. No thoughtful dialogue at all. I don't understand that. I am obviously missing something. Thank you for sharing this post with us."

Closing Note to The Community: Of the two public letters exhibiting vicious hatred and character assassination with no foundation, and the other written with grace and love...each which will cause a public reaction towards all of you....which of the two would YOU want to represent you? 

Think about it. As for me, I'm not just coming to you with an olive branch, I'm coming with the whole tree.