As a non-believer at F2B Meetings...

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Mr Summit
Chapter Leader
Joined in 2010
June 26, 2013, 21:33

Hi Tim,

The details for next months' meeting aren't up as I am just waiting for a few extra details. But we will be having a conversation about the moments in your journey that caused you to accept yourself (like a movie, or seeing a gay couple, etc). It follows on from a story telling night we had earlier this year and is on the 11th of July at 7pm at QAHC.

Joined in 2010
June 27, 2013, 08:45

Thanks for the heads up. I would really find it restorative to share and listen in a discussion like that. I look forward to it eagerly.


Joined in 2009
June 28, 2013, 21:17

It is good that we have people who aren't "Christian" as part of freedom 2b. They remind us of much of the crap we have grown up with & how we need to be continually challenged as people of faith, as Gandhi said: "I would have become a Christian, if it wasn't for the Christians."

Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
June 30, 2013, 10:43

Hi James

When I think about it I guess we each inspire or facilitate growth in ourselves and others, no matter what our beliefs or backgrounds. I think the challenge is to make the most of the hard times and the not so good examples from others as you seem to have done. Any group will have it's positives and failings but some will suit one individual more than the next. It's about checking out perspectives, reflecting on them, leaving behind that which doesn't sit right with your personal views and embracing what does. To do this I think we each need to be guided by our own values, being true to what's most important to us rather than being directed by others.

TimP, I am so glad you have found our replies helpful and equally we have found your feedback very beneficial. It's great that you are doing what you need to do to support your own growth so if that means just attending the social parts of the meetings, that's more than fine. 🙂


Ann Maree

Lady Jane
Joined in 2009
July 1, 2013, 13:09

Hi TimP,

Although I arrived some days late into this discussion, I'd like to add my bit. I attend the Sydney chapter (not as often as I would wish, as I do not actually live there). What attracted me to F2B, among other things, was its only stipulation being: 'for people of Christian background .. if you are in the Church or no longer there' with no agenda of proselitizing members or attempting to draw them back to the Christian faith if they are no longer there". I have felt welcome and found this comfortable. I do realize that the Christian faith is very important – pivotal – to a number of the members and I respect that, although this is not where I am at.

After years of religious brainwashing as a child and adolescent – even unrelated to orientation, I must add – I can only take religion in small doses. Discussions on religion (or theology: I found myself accidentally added to a FB group called Rainbow Theologians and I got out very quickly) tend to distress and upset me rather help me. I have been at avoidance stage for a long time. This is my issue, and I do not know if it will ever be resolved.

Joined in 2010
July 5, 2013, 08:59


Thanks for speaking of your own experience in this. I have often needed to stop or limit my exposure to faith discussion simply because it was too traumatic for me at the time. I find the freedom of internet research helpful, because I am free to withdraw or break whenever I feel the need.


As per previous posts, I was planning to attend this coming f2b Meeting next Friday, but I find it clashes with a screening of a gay-themed film programme at the Gallery of Modern Art. I'd been planning to go to this as soon as I saw it advertised, and it's important to me.

But I will come straight to the Mecca Bah social gathering afterwards. I hope to make some new acquaintances and renew others.

Goodwill to all


Joined in 2009
July 5, 2013, 20:41

I think it was Shakespeare (whom some believe may have been a woman dressed as a man?) who said: "To your own self be true." That is what really matters in life.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
July 22, 2013, 11:23

As many have stated here already TimP….freedom2b is your space as much as anyone else's as the guidelines say.

Some additional background might be of value.

Before creating freedom2b I was already working in several spaces. Ex-gay survivors, gay christian etc. There seemed to be spaces for many LGBT people from various denominations but nothing for people from Pentecostal and Charismatic backgrounds. After my autobiography was released I received 100's and I mean 100's of emails from readers telling me their heart-wrenching stories. One thing that was abundantly clear to me was that the people who needed to connect the most were people who were still sorting things out but if they thought freedom2b was another gay christian organization then they would run a mile. The last thing they needed was another group to tell them what they should do.

When I wrote the guidelines and mission statements I had these people in mind.

Freedom2b was to be a space with no agenda as has already been mentioned to make people come out, come back to faith, go to back to church, leave church or whatever. A space for those who had rejected their faith, those who had redefined it, those who had embraced it again and those still working out which direction they would go. There used to be a document here about those various groups and their specific needs.

The thing that connects us is essentially our backgrounds and experience. From there everything begins to broaden.

As also has been already mentioned this unique (and it is globally unique) space is not without its tensions but generally speaking we have managed to maintain that……and everyone respects where people are at on their journeys.

Hope that helps.

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