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July 2013
Jesus in Love Newsletter
LGBT spirituality and the arts
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In This Issue
Queer religious art
UpStairs Lounge fire
Human rights saint
Holy fool and hermit
Queer saint of 1776

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.  


I'm still celebrating the recent victory for marriage equality at the US Supreme Court! A question from a scholar led me to create a list of queer religious art beyond Christianity this month.
Queer religious art resources listed

Religious Symbols
Queer religious art resources from Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and Paganism are listed today on the Jesus in Love Blog.

The list provides dozens of links to art created throughout human history, from ancient cave paintings to today's contemporary images.

It includes Asian, African / African-American, Australian, Celtic, Latina/o, Native American art. More info 

UpStairs Lounge fire: 40 years later 

UpStairs Lounge art by Skylar Fein
America's deadliest attack on LGBT people was remembered in powerful new ways on its 40th anniversary. An arson fire killed 32 people at the UpStairs Lounge, a gay bar that doubled as a church, in New Orleans on June 24, 1973.


Few people cared at the time, but now the UpStairs fire is recalled in art and onstage with the new dramatic musical "Upstairs." More info  


(Credit:"See You at the UpStairs Lounge" by Skylar Fein)  

Pauli Murray: Queer saint stood for racial and gender equality

Pauli Murray by Laurel Green
Human rights champion and queer saint Pauli Murray is a renowned civil rights pioneer, feminist, author, lawyer and the first black woman ordained as an Episcopal priest.

She was approved last year for inclusion in the Episcopal book of saints with July 1 as her feast day. Others have written extensively about her accomplishments, but material on her queer side is rare. More info

(Credit: "Pauli Murray" by Laurel Green)

Holy fool and hermit loved each other

Symeon and John by Jim Ru

Sixth-century Syrian monks Symeon and John were were joined in a same-sex union and lived together as desert-dwelling hermits for 29 years. After a tearful split-up, Symeon went on to become known as the Holy Fool of Emesa. More info


(Credit: "Symeon and John" by Jim Ru

Jemima Wilkinson: Queer preacher reborn as "Publick Universal Friend" in 1776  
Jemima Wilkinson

Jemima Wilkinson was a queer American preacher who woke from a near-death experience in 1776 believing she was neither male nor female. She changed her name to the "Publick Universal Friend," fought for gender equality and founded an important religious community.


In 1776, the same year that America issued the Declaration of Independence, Wilkinson declared her own independence from gender.  This fascinating person died almost 200 years ago on July 1, 1819. More info 

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Marriage equality wins at the Supreme Court: Religious reactions


Saints of Stonewall inspire LGBT justice -- and art

The Supreme Court ruling was a landmark for same-sex marriage, but much remains to be done to ensure equality for all. At times like this, it's helpful to remember the words of newly recognized saint Pauli Murray: "As followers of Christ, we are called upon to take risks, to work for the liberation of the body, mind, and spirit."

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