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March 2013
Jesus in Love Newsletter
LGBT spirituality and the arts
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In This Issue
Butch heroes
Queer martyrs
Polyeuct & Nearchus
Queen Esther
Sex & religion books

glbt spirituality & arts
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Jesus in Love supports lesbian, gay, bi trans and queer  (LGBTQ) spirituality, with an emphasis on art and literature. It promotes artistic and religious freedom and teaches love for all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. It is based on these beliefs: God loves all people, including sexual minorities. The creative process is sacred. The queer visions, especially the gay Jesus and LGBT saints, will free people to experience the divine in new ways and lead to a more just world.


Jesus in Love was founded by lesbian Christian author Kittredge Cherry as her personal gift to the world.  


Let go and connect authenically this month, the time of Lent that leads to Easter. I'm glad to introduce a new artist suitable for the season: Ria Brodell.
Artist paints history's butch heroes
He-Man and S. Michael by Ria Brodell
Queer desire, gender identity and growing up Catholic are explored by Boston artist Ria Brodell in paintings of "Butch Heroes" and "The Handsome and the Holy." Catharina aka Anastasius Linck by Ria Brodell

Brodell uses the format of Catholic holy cards to paint history's butch lesbians, queer women and F2M transgenders. The artist also does self-portraits as an ideal man, and brings together unlikely couples from pop culture and religion. More info and interview

(Credit:"He-Man and St. Michael Find They Have a Lot in Common" and "Catharina aka Anastasius Linck," both by Ria Brodell)
Queer martyrs rise from the ashes

Dutch massacre of sodomites in 1730
Thousands were executed for homosexuality over the centuries. Lent, the solemn season that began on Ash Wednesday, is an appropriate time to reflect on the sins of the church and state against queer people.

A new illustration ends with an empowering statement: "But even were I to be done away with, those who are like me would remain."

This report features new and historical images from many times and places, including Bishop John Atherton in Dublin, Catharina Linck in Germany and two-spirit Native Americans in Panama. More info 

Saints were "brothers by affection"

Sts. Polyeuct and Nearchus by Robert Lentz
Saints Polyeuct and Nearchus, Roman soldiers in Armenia, are a primary example of same-sex lovers in the early church. 

The men had a strong desire to spend eternity together.  Shortly before Polyeuct died, he spoke his last words to Nearchus: "Remember our secret vow." More info

(Credit: Saints Polyeuct and Nearchus by Robert Lentz, 
Biblical queens inspire LGBT writers

Queen Esther
Biblical Queen Esther is a role model for LGBTQ people. A possible love story between her and Persian Queen Vashi has fired the imagination of lesbian playwright Carolyn Gage. Rev. David Bahr says the two queens show different ways that gays and lesbians can approach ministry. More info


(Credit: Queen Esther, Distant Shores Media/Sweet Publishing)

New books on sexuality and religion


Just published! "Theology and Sexuality" by Susannah Cornwall gives an overview of theological debate on sexuality, including same-sex relationships, gender and sexuality in the Christian tradition, marriage, celibacy and other "sexchalogical tensions." Opening line: "Humans are sexual creatures."


"The New Testament on Sexuality" by William R.G. Loader will be discussed by the LGBT/Queer Hermeneutics unit at the American Academy of Religion annual meeting in November. 


"How to be Gay" by David M. Halperin will be discussed by the Gay Men and Religion Group at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting in November.

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Peter Gomes: Gay black Harvard minister preached "scandalous gospel"


Marcella Althaus-Reid: Queer theology pioneer

Watch for the Gay Passion of Christ series on the Jesus in Love Blog starting on Palm Sunday, March 24.  


Until then may we put aside the things that keep us from God and each other.  Let's live the grace of letting go.

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Kittredge Cherry
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Scott and Eric
One day, two processions;
One meek, an arriving Lamb,
    soothing, offering Grace;
The other, Dreadful Power
    speaking intimidation.
One died, and thus lives on.
The other lived on, but now is gone.
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