El­der An­to­nio Jones

Unity Fel­low­ship Church www.uni­tyfel­low­shipchurch.org

GA Voice - - Ga Voice -

When and how did you come out?

The short ver­sion is that I was outed by my exwife. The church then dis­cov­ered that I was same­sex at­tracted and at­tempted to “de­liver” me. Af­ter sev­eral episodes of this failed at­tempt to “de­liver” me, I de­liv­ered my­self from the bondage of op­pres­sion I ex­pe­ri­enced in that church and into the won­der­ful bliss I ex­pe­ri­enced when I fi­nally knew that God cre­ated me to be gay.

How did re­li­gion play a role in you coming out?

In­ter­est­ingly, re­li­gion contributed to my in­ter­nal­ized ho­mo­pho­bia and my self ha­tred. But to­day, it is re­li­gion, so to speak, that ush­ered me (no pun in­tended) into the re­al­iza­tion that de­nial of my sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion was a de­nial of one the great­est gifts that God gave me.

Re­li­gion cre­ated a thirst in me that could only be quenched by un­der­stand­ing why God would cre­ate some­one that he detests or by un­der­stand­ing that this state­ment was ab­so­lutely wrong. My former church taught me that that God could not and would not love any­one who is same-sex at­tracted. I was taught that my very pres­ence as a gay man would cause God to vomit.

It did not make sense to me and I knew I did not “choose” to be gay so I con­tin­ued to seek God’s voice and God spoke clearly through my de­nom­i­na­tion which taught me that “God loves me just the way that I am.” One might say I lost God and found God through re­li­gion.

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