Raymond Sawyer kindly has allowed me to republish his gay fable on the intersection of life and church-going.
Since the majority of Christian denominations officially oppress gays and lesbians, the Sunday Brunch replaced a more sacred Eucharistic celebration. Plato referred to this transference as "revolution within a form."
Sunday morning was still important. It contained a meal with conviviality and serious conversation around the brunch table. It was a time to review serious Saturday night gossip, and share announcements on the vital statistics of the group.
Our community is renowned for good cuisine, exquisite presentation and of course, conversational etiquette. Well, maybe two out of three, maybe.
Life has changed for our population. Enter the Same-Sex Family -- Gay or Lesbian -- with children. An alarm bell rings. Somehow the importance of spiritual nourishment becomes paramount. You begin to actually peruse the internet under the heading " GAY CHURCHES." or " GAY FRIENDLY " or the truly politically correct "GAY AFFIRMING."
Your next step, of course, is to vaguely remember that you were both raised in different denominations. You next remember that one conversation on that subject decades ago made you painfully aware that Roman Catholics and Southern Baptists would not openly welcome your advances -- and the emotions on your side would be mutual.
That is not to say that some mainline Christian sects don't have open or closeted acceptance of gay and lesbian families. You may have to travel to some neighboring city or town to find the "right" Methodist, Lutheran, Presbyterian or Episcopal parish church with the "right" pastor or rector on board.
You may even find a maverick Roman Catholic priest who both sets off your gay-dar and is "openly closeted" and carefully and subtly states his opposition to pastoral guidelines on marriage, contraception, and yes, YOU.
This is sometimes found in parishes or other venues operated by religious order priests, like the Franciscans. One must remember that Father Mykal Judge who died on 9/11 was a gay Franciscan priest who was fire brigade chaplain for New York City.
Out of all this, we provide our son with several messages on Sunday morning.
1) Sunday Brunch is after the Sunday Eucharist.
2) Our particular parish, and diocese and National Church respect who and what we represent. One bishop in our Church is just like his daddy.
3) Jesus loves him, and Jesus loves his two dads.
4) Families with moms and dads, and just moms or dads are okay and they think that we are ok too. We love each other on Sunday and every other day. Sunday School is fun.
5) DO NOT EAT TOO MUCH at Coffee Hour because you won't be hungry for SUNDAY BRUNCH.