Saying “Meh” to the Preacher

I was at a church service a few Sundays ago. The guest preacher (minister was away that day) started his sermon by talking about the dangers transgender people like Caitlyn Jenner poses to God’s kingdom, and how society is so accepting this of perversion to a point that we now encourage kids to become transgender. He said that people like Jenner are not new, and that these men who choose to live like women have been around in Thailand for decades, and that they often work as prostitutes. (He used a derogatory term in Cantonese for transgender women, which literally means “human demons”.)

After the service, a woman remarked that she didn’t know that this church is still against transgender people. I replied that the preacher didn’t speak for the congregation, and that he was probably pandering to parishioners who have left the church unbeknownst to him. As a transgender woman, the sermon made me very sad. Actually, before the preacher even finished his introduction, I had already tuned him out.

I consider myself staunchly Christian, and I work with/for Christian organizations on sex-trade and human trafficking issues in Toronto. Yet whenever I step inside most evangelical churches, my identity and worth (or as they say, my “lifestyle”) are being marginalized. If you say your sin is with money, or greed, or idolatry, or just about anything else, they will embrace you and your flaws. Let the Holy Spirit change you, they say. Tell them you’re transgender, you’ll lose your friends, your credibility, and your place at church. For a Jesus that spent so much time ministering to the marginalized, we sure don’t look much like his disciples.

That’s why when I go to church, I go to more “progressive” churches, or as a pastor at evangelical churches used to say, the “liberal churches that no longer care about Jesus, or God, or the Bible”. I want debate theologically with them about LGBT issues, but I realize that it’s nearly impossible.

But I’m not losing hope. A small group of friends from an evangelical church have been keen on learning about transgender people, and are beginning to rethink their church’s anti-LGBT stance. I’m not sure if they will ever be able to accept a transgender person into the Body of Christ, but I know that they’re the leaders of tomorrow, and being open minded doesn’t hurt a bit.

(I am half way through translating this post into Chinese. If that’s the version that you prefer, then you may have to wait a while.)

  2 comments for “Saying “Meh” to the Preacher

  1. Catinheels
    August 30, 2015 at 12:47 AM

    Sorry no web site Meh? I was referencing your title for the Preacher. Stupid computers still don’t get misplaced humor. Thank GOD for speel cheks thoe. (meh is meant like hacking out fur ball?)
    I’ll pester You just a little here my dear Katie…..Sounds like the visiting Preacher is a closet fan. (lol….hehehe) sorry…No I’m not. Apologize I do. Sorry not so much.
    I will try my best to “NOT” sway your church going ways as long as I can.
    The church is old, religion is old and it is all controlled by the old. It is not designed to be flexible nor fluid, sort of 1 size fits all, girdle. That is why it is effective and enduring. Keeps stuff in place!
    Me, I’m more the custom tailored boned corset type. How about that for mixing up metaphors? And so off topic. Meow
    I don’t have much faith in organized religions of any flavor. Happy for you that they provide comfort to those in need of comforting. That sounds funny but is sincere…..
    As You said pay it no mind, tune it out, sermons like that come from small thinkers and are subject to change with the winds.
    I hope this finds You in great health, abundance and surrounded by persons good for YOU.

  2. alex
    March 23, 2016 at 10:52 PM

    Certain things are not meant to be changed ,but grace and mercy belong to God to impute , so ask him for that be at rest in the end you will be what he wants you to be . Pray through it all . I don’t like to give spiritual advice , such a sensitive subject ,but you seemed so burdened , I had to say something . I feel horrible because I’m actually an admirer of yours and I am attracted to you , feverishly . Anyway heres my phone number , 1-646-508-5537 , let’s stay in touch .

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