Rev. Michael Piazza
Virginia Highland Church www.vhchurch.org
When and how did you come out?
I came out in seminary at Emory when I fell in love with a gay classmate. I came out very publicly when the MCC was fire-bombed and the police called me at home. I came down to the church and my picture ended up on the front page of the Atlanta Journal & Constitution Sunday edition.
How did religion play a role in you coming out?
My parents are poor rednecks from South Georgia but the one thing they made clear to me was that no matter what happened in life they loved me. Somehow I always believed that God was like that and so it felt safe to deal honestly with who I was.
When I met my partner it was the most natural thing in the world to get married in a church, even though that was 1980.