BY REV GAVIN WARD
Sexuality and spirituality. These are words that taken separately most people can get their head around. But taken together these two words can cause misunderstanding, fear, self-loathing and at worst cases, hatred and violence. And the Christian Church has been a part of this.
To me is one of the great tragedy’s of the Church’s history with sexuality, that it has tried to take the wonder and great breadth of the creation of God and confine it into a box that tells all who are outside it that they are excluded.
Gay men, lesbians, transgendered people and bisexual people have all and do all face discrimination from societal values and attitudes that, very often, have been taught by the churches.
In addition to this, many churches use the Bible as a weapon to discrimination and to try and force people to be what they are not, and to try and keep people out, rather than welcoming them in.
However this is not a true reflection of Christ, or of what the Church should be, or what God says. I also believe that it takes power away from God.
As a Christian minister I am talking from a Christian perspective. But I know that in other religions and paths of spirituality, the wonder of creation needs to be and is fully celebrated too.
So to me, when people say that sexuality limits access to God and a life of spiritual fulfilment, I wonder how this make sense. I just have to look around at the wonders of creation in nature and see how much diversity there is.
How can people say that God can only create people who are heterosexual and that any person identifying differently in their sexuality cannot be counted as a valid child of God?
To me that is the equivalent of saying that red flowers are good but yellow (or pink!) flowers are bad. It just doesn’t make sense.
Remember you are created to be just who you are, and you are loved by God just as you are.
Nothing can stop the love of God for you and never let your sexuality stop you from leading a full and wonderful spiritual life.

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