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What does the Bible say about sexuality and gender identity? What is it like growing up LGBTQ in the church? How might a parent or pastor best respond when a loved one comes out? At CenterPeace, we always encourage folks to prayerfully reflect on these questions. That's why we've compiled a list of recommended resources that we've found to be the most helpful, Some are written by scholars, delving into ancient texts and cultures. Others are by LGBTQ Christians sharing their stories. And some are the testimonies and insights of parents and church leaders.

Resources

"There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear."

1 John 4:18

It's always helpful to explore challenging subjects in community. Share what you're learning with a friend or a family member, or please reach out to us and we would be glad to connect with you. 

Affirming: A Memoir of Faith, Sexuality and Staying in the Church

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CenterPeace is proud to present Affirmingwritten by our Executive Director Sally Gary

In this deeply personal memoir, Sally traces the experiences, conversations, and scriptural reading that culminated in her seeing her sexuality as something that made sense within the context of her faith—not outside of it or in opposition to it. Along the way, she addresses specific aspects of her journey that will resonate with many other gay Christians: the loneliness and isolation of her previously celibate life, the futile attempts she made to resist or even “change” her sexual orientation, and the fear of intimacy that followed a lifetime of believing same-sex relationships were sinful.
 
Sally’s story—one of heritage, learning, courage, and love—is written especially for the generations of LGBTQ Christians after her who are questioning whether they can stay part of the church they call home. It’s a resounding reminder that, just like Sally’s own heart, things can change, and sometimes, when we earnestly search for the truth, we find it in the most unexpected places.

What's it like to be an LGBTQ Christian?

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Blue Babies Pink

 

B. T. Harman​

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Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gay-vs.-Christian Debate

 

Justin Lee

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Deeper Waters: Building Bridges Over Cultural Conflict

 

Amie Scott​

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Washed and Waiting: Reflections on Christian Faithfulness and Homosexuality

 

Wesley Hill (celibate gay Christian)

CenterPeace Director, Sally Gary, has written two memoirs. The first one, Loves God, Likes Girls (2013) details her growing up years. This book covers the period when she held a traditionalist view of same-sex relationships. The second one, Affirming (2021) is a sequel and shares the story of how she eventually came to reconcile her faith and sexuality. Read them both to experience what it's like to take this journey.

Book link for Loves God, Likes Girls
Book link for Affirming

Find Christian LGBTQ Role Models

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The Uncommon Saints series, hosted at the Bakos Project website features Christian LGBTQ leaders who love Jesus and edify the church.

How can churches and families respond in love?

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Love Is an Orientation: Elevating the Conversation with the Gay Community

Andrew Marin

See also his book:

Us versus Us: The Untold Story of Religion and the LGBT Community

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Embracing the Journey: A Christian Parents' Blueprint to Loving Your LGBTQ Child

 

Greg & Lynn McDonald

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Love Makes Room: And Other Things I Learned When My Daughter Came Out

 

Staci Frenes

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Why Churches Need to Talk About Sexuality

 

Mark Wingfield

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Stranger God: Meeting Jesus in Disguise

 

Richard Beck

See also his book:

Unclean: Meditations on Purity, Hospitality, and Mortality

 

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Love First

 

Don McLaughlin

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Unarmed Empire

 

Sean Palmer

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Talking Across the Divide 

 

Justin Lee

What does the Bible say about same-sex relationships?

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Bible, Gender, Sexuality​

 

James Brownson

What about gender identity?

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Sex Difference in Christian Theology: Male, Female, and Intersex in the Image of God

 

Megan DeFranza

Scripture Ethics Same-Sex Relationships.

Scripture, Ethics & the Possibility of Same-Sex Relationships

Karen R. Keen​

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Transforming: The Bible and the Lives of Transgender Christians 

 

​Austen Hartke

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God and the Gay Christian

Matthew Vines

Understanding Gender Dysphoria by Yarhou

Understanding Gender Dysphoria

 

Mark Yarhouse

Take a Class

Happy Couple

BIBLE, CHURCH, &

SAME-SEX RELATIONSHIPS

Adult Students

PARENT STUDY GROUP

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FINDING GOD:
A PRAYER RETREAT

Documentary:
Loves God, Likes Girls

What’s it like to grow up in a conservative Christian world and realize one is gay? Watch as filmmaker Jordan Bunch follows CenterPeace director, Sally Gary. Raised in the Church of Christ, a spiritual heritage she still cherishes, Sally tells us about the fears of coming out and what happened when she did. A powerful story of courage and faith.

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