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July 2015
Jesus in Love Newsletter
LGBT spirituality and the arts
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In This Issue
Gay Vatican art
Queer Christ class
UpStairs arson
Faggots We May Be
New books
Pauli Murray
Bike Blessing
Uganda Martyrs

glbt spirituality & arts
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Love won when the US Supreme Court
ruled for marriage equality on June 26. Let's celebrate while recalling the ups and downs of LGBT spiritual history, from the UpStairs fire to downright glorious Vatican art.
Gay Vatican art tours reveal hidden history

Detail from Sistine Chapel

Gay history hidden in Vatican religious art can now be seen with new LGBT-friendly tours. In a sign of the Vatican's increasing acceptance of queer people, Italian travel company Quiiky has begun offering LGBT-oriented tours based on the lives, loves and masterpieces of Renaissance artists Michelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci. More info


(Credit: Same-sex kiss in Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel art)

New seminary course covers queer Christ

"Queering Christ in Image and Text" will be taught at Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley July 27-31 by Justin Tanis and Jay Johnson. It may be the first time that an entire seminary course has focused on the queer Christ in visual art. More info

The required textbook is "Art That Dares: Gay Jesus, Woman Christ, & More" by Kittredge Cherry. 
UpStairs Lounge fire recalled in new film

UpStairs Lounge art by Skylar Fein
The deadliest attack on LGBT people in U.S. history is remembered in powerful ways on its 42nd anniversary, including two new films. "Upstairs Inferno," directed by Robert Camina, premiered on the anniversary of the the arson fire that killed 32 people at the UpStairs Lounge in New Orleans on June 24, 1973. More info


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

Poem: Faggots We May Be

"We transform fear of being burned as faggots by refusing to be consumed with convention," -- from "Faggots We May Be," a new poem by S. Alan Fann.

He weaves together LGBT spiritual themes, making connections with the UpStairs Lounge fire, global warming and the Rainbow Christ. More info
New books: LGBT Christian books for July

"After the Wrath of God: AIDS, Sexuality, and American Religion" by Anthony M. Petro

"Religion, Flesh, and Blood: The Convergence of HIV/AIDS, Black Sexual Expression, and Therapeutic Religion" by Pamela Leong

Summaries of both new books
Pauli Murray: Queer saint stood for justice

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 for inclusion in the Episcopal book of saints in 2012. Murray was attracted to women and her longest relationships were with women. She described herself as a man trapped in a woman's body and took hormone treatments. More info

(Credit: "Pauli Murray" by Laurel Green)

Motorcyle bike blessing remembered    

Jim Mitulski and Kitt Cherry bless bikes

Motorcycle blessings at the San Francisco Eagle brought together spirituality and LGBT culture in the 1980s. Kittredge Cherry was one of the worship leaders at the 1988 "Bike Blessing" at the gay leather bar. More info


(Photo by Mister Marcus)

Uganda Martyrs raise questions on homosexuality, religion and LGBT rights 
Ugandan Martyrs icon

Tough questions about homosexuality, religion and LGBT rights are raised by the Uganda Martyrs. Forty-five Ugandan male pages refused to have sex with their king after they converted to Christianity in 1886 -- so he executed them. They were canonized, leaving some truths hidden by their halos.


The Uganda Martyrs are important now with Uganda at the center of worldwide debate on homosexuality. How can the story be interpreted so that LGBT Ugandans have equal access to justice... and to God? More info 

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Give financial support to Kittredge Cherry for the Jesus in Love Newsletter and Blog. More info 

Your contributions make this newsletter possible. Thank you!

I am pleased that the Daily Kos reposted a big part of my article on the UpStairs Lounge Fire. It's an honor to be quoted by one of America's biggest and best liberal news blogs.  


Writing this from the United States between June's marriage equality ruling and Independence Day on July 4, I give thanks to God for love and freedom all over the world.  



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Kittredge Cherry
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Book cover Passion of Christ A Gay Vision
By Kittredge Cherry
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Reflect on Jesus as a gay man in a modern city
"Accessible but profound"
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