Introduction: We are The Faithful Within

We are Justin Massey and Nathan Barber, two gay students committed to furthering justice and love in the name of Jesus. In this blog we are setting forth to discuss contentious topics that flow throughout our society and our churches including justice, sexuality, culture and more. As followers of Christ we can easily fall into sensationalized debates the world hands us, and our core identities and world views seem to inherently separate us from our brothers and sisters with whom we disagree. While we may feel these differences are irreconcilable, we must remember our call to seek unity as the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 1:10) and to love one another as Christ loves us. As gay persons in the church, we have the unique experience of existing between two polarized realms. We are members of the LGBT Christian community which refuses to be wrenched to one side or the other of a shamelessly divisive culture war. We are disadvantaged at times, but well-equipped to share our individual experiences and narratives. We assert ourselves as valuable members of Christ’s body, rather than as an “issue” to be fought over. We are The Faithful Within these complex conversations, dedicated to reconciliation within our own identities and our communities.

While you can look forward to highly opinionated, (sometimes) well-informed voices, we recognize we have only two. Our LGBT brothers and sisters in the church have different stories to share, ones that we cannot adequately represent. While our stories overlap at times, they cannot be conflated to one, singular experience. Therefore, we will at times invite other members of our community to contribute guest posts on topics important to them. We hope that our blog will be an encouragement to those who are unable or uncomfortable speaking out. We hope that you may gain insight through our individual experiences and thoughts, and that our writing might bless you and challege you to consider how we ought to engage our world as followers of Christ.

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3 Comments

  1. I feel like this kind of openness would not have been possible when I was at Wheaton (1991-1995) and I know that even now it’s not easy. Thanks so much for creating this blog and letting your voices be heard!

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  2. I am a 1996 Clinical Psychology MA graduate and it is lovely to see your blog and such public discourse about being LGBTQIA at Wheaton. As an Ivy-League lesbian, I applied to Wheaton for graduate school FULLY OUT on my application, and figured if I was accepted, I should go. The rest was two years of rigorous education, professors I respected, and I won the Rech Award for Excellence in my graduating class. Sadly, my award was marred by the complaints of peers who felt that being an excellent student and clinician was incompatible with being a lesbian. However, beyond those small minded folks, my professors and the vast majority of my classmates were nothing but loving, supportive, and welcoming. And they made sure I got to keep my award.

    Good luck to you in continuing to talk about what being a gay Christian means and recognizing the broad community we are.

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