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July 2016
Jesus in Love Newsletter
LGBTQ spirituality and the arts
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In This Issue
LGBT clergy protest July 4, 1965
Publick Universal Friend
RIP Pulse Orlando
UpStairs arson fire
Rainbow flags in church
Our Lady's lesbian kiss
New books: July 2016
LGBT history in art
Pauli Murray
Saints of Stonewall
Bentham on gay Jesus
Thanks to 11 donots

glbt spirituality & arts
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LGBT history, church leadership and patriotism combined in the Annual Reminder demonstrations held every Fourth of July from 1965 to 1969. This Independence Day story is told here in the aftermath of Orlando.
Clergyman picketed for LGBT equality
in Fourth of July 1965-69 protests.

Annual Reminder protest
Early LGBT rights protests happened every Fourth of July from 1965 to 1969 in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia. Protestors included Robert W. Wood, the first member of the clergy to picket for LGBT rights.

The events were called Annual Reminders to remind people that "homosexual Americans" were denied the rights to ""life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" as guaranteed in the U.S. Declaration of Independence. Wood also wrote America's first book on homosexuality and Christianity in 1960.  More info
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 

RIP Orlando: 50 dead at gay nightclubing  Pulse Orlando logo with rainbow flag  
A mass shooting at the Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, left 49 dead and 53 injured on June 12.

May the souls of those killed in Orlando be united with history's many queer martyrs
May we come together to affirm that love is stronger than hate. More info

Before Orlando, UpStairs arson killed 32

UpStairs Lounge art by Skylar Fein
Before the Orlando massacre ithis June, the deadliest attack on LGBT people in U.S. history was an arson fire at the UpStairs Lounge, a gay bar in New Orleans. The fire killed 32 people on June 24, 1973.  The fire is remembered in powerful new films, books and plays. More info
(Credit:"See You at the UpStairs Lounge" by Skylar Fein)  
I first saw the rainbow flag in a church...
 Rainbow Flags in church by Jim Ross  
"I first saw the rainbow flag in a church," writes Jesus in Love founder Kittredge Cherry in a new article at Believe Out Loud. She reflects on seeing the rainbow flags at Metropolitan Community Church of San Francisco in 1985. Read article
(Photo by Jim Ross, University Baptist Church)
Our Lady's lesbian kiss sparks controversy
 Lesbian Mary poster Spain  
A lesbian kiss between two images of the Virgin Mary is causing controversy in Spain. Church officials denounced a Pride-month poster with Madonnas kissing as an interracial couple. "Against the holy oppression, love as you want," says the poster. It shows Our Lady of the Forsaken kissing the dark-skinned Virgin of Monserrat. More info 

(Credit: Detail from poster by Endavant
New LGBTQ Christian books: July 2016  
"Transgender, Intersex and Biblical Interpretation" by Teresa Hornsby and Deryn Guest.
"Holy Women Icons Contemplative Coloring Book" by Angela Yarber. Includes many lesbians.
"Religious Freedom and Gay Rights: Emerging Conflicts in North America and Europe" by Jack Friedman, Timothy Shah and Thomas Farr (editors).

"Is It a Boy, a Girl, or Both?" by Megan Rohrer (children's book).
More info
Artist starts LGBT history series    

Willem Arondeus by Stephen Mead
Suggestions for an art series on the LGBT civil rights movement are requested by Stephen Mead. he is a gay mixed-media artist and poet based in New York. Mead wants to present pre-Stonewall individuals, especially the obscure and unsung, with his new LGBT series. Religious and spiritual figures are welcome. More info

(Credit: Willem Arondeus by Stephen Mead)
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)

Saints of Stonewall honored

It was Beautiful by Douglas Blanchard
LGBT people fought back against police harassment in June 1969 at the Stonewall Inn, launching the LGBT liberation movement.

They are honored here as "saints of Stonewall" because they had the courage to battle an unjust system. They did the miracle of turning self-hatred into self esteem. More info

(Credit: "It was Beautiful" by Douglas Blanchard)
Homosexuality of Jesus explored by 18th-century philosopher Bentham 
Jeremy Bentham engraving
British philosopher Jeremy Bentham (1748 - 1832) presented Biblical evidence for Jesus' homosexuality about 200 years ago -- in writings that were never published until recently.

This extraordinary champion of sexual freedom was far, far ahead of his time. He laid out many of the same arguments that are still used today by LGBT Christians and our allies. More info
Thanks to 11 donors for Pride Month   
  Pride Month Offering 114 percent raised  
Many thanks to the 11 people who donated to the Pride Month offering. Click to see their names and wonderful comments. 
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You can still give now to support the Jesus in Love Newsletter and Blog.
Rainbow Christ Prayer translations skyrocketed to #8 of the all-time most popular posts at the Jesus in Love Blog with 3,300 views in June. Every other post on the all-time Top 10 took at least four years to get there!

On Independence Day and always, may you be inspired by the spirit of Stonewall and the Holy Spirit.

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Kittredge Cherry
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