Saturday, November 21, 2015

Invictus Pilgrim Memoir: "Because of Your Gayness, Not In Spite of It"

11/10/10: Emails to/from my "Gay Priesthood Leader"


"A verse from the Book of Mormon (of all things) came into my mind this morning as being extremely relevant – after being changed a being altered somewhat. I offer to you a middle-aged gay Mormon father’s version of Samuel the Lamanite’s declaration found in Helaman 13:38:
'But behold … the days of your youth are past; ye have procrastinated the day of your coming out until it is everlastingly too late; and your sorrow is made sure; yea, for ye have worked all the days of your life for that which was contrary to your nature; and ye have sought for happiness in being a heterosexual Mormon, and in all that this entails, which thing is contrary to your true nature.' [1]
"This is not intended to be maudlin, but I think you would agree that there is a significant amount of tragic truth in it."


"I don't see your situation as a tragic. You are a bright, articulate and talented person. Whether you remain with your wife or eventually follow another path won't change the fact that your life is precious. Your spirit burns bright and comes across clearly in what you write. Don't let anyone ever tell you that you are of lesser worth. You are who you are because of your gayness, not in spite of it. It is part and parcel of your soul. You have every right to hold your head up high and look everyone you meet in the eye."


"I’m not ashamed to say my eyes watered as I read this. I’m simply not used to hearing or seeing such things said or written about me. I don’t think I’ve truly considered my life as being 'precious' for even one day of my life. Nor have I thought of my spirit as 'burning brightly.' And I certainly have never thought of myself, in a positive way, as being who I am because of my gayness. I’m sure it will come as no surprise to you to hear that I have, rather, always thought of myself as the hobbled, handicapped, deeply scarred person I am in spite of, among other things, my homosexuality. I hope – someday – to truly affirm my gayness as part and parcel of my soul, to embrace and love it – to love myself."

(I'm working on a memoir about the year I came out. This is one of a ongoing series of posts based on the blog - entitled "Invictus Pilgrim" - that I kept during that year.)

[1] The actual verse: "But behold, your days of probation are past; ye have procrastinated the day of your salvation until it is everlastingly too late, and your destruction is made sure; yea, for ye have sought all the days of your lives for that which ye could not obtain; and ye have sought for happiness in doing iniquity, which thing is contrary to the nature of that righteousness which is in our great and Eternal Head."

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