Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras 2010
Freedom 2 b[e] Celebrates the Survivors
People who are same-sex-orientated often feel societal and family pressures to resist, reject or deny their true feelings. This pressure to conform and live as heterosexuals is much more intense for those who come from faith backgrounds and Christian churches, as the belief system says that acceptance or rejection of their sexuality has eternal consequences. Struggling to change can be private and internal, through one on one personal counselling or support groups. Some of us have even gone to the extremes of exorcisms, ‘ex-gay’ programs or marrying, believing this will solve our ‘problem’. The journey to find resolution and self–acceptance for gay men and lesbians from Christian backgrounds can be torturous and even traumatic.
There is NO scientific evidence that people can change their sexual orientation and mental health professionals have warned of the emotional and psychological dangers of attempting.
This year, Freedom 2 b[e] (a network of people from Pentecostal, Charismatic and Evangelical backgrounds) celebrates the journey survivors have travelled to rid ourselves of damaging and outdated beliefs. Beliefs that said homosexuality was a sin, sickness or the result of a dysfunctional family upbringing. We are no longer victims of our own or others ignorance.
We invite all those who have been through any form of ‘ex-gay’ therapy or counselling to join us this year in the parade. Family members and friends are welcome to join us in support.
Marching in the Mardi Gras parade or a Pride march is often an empowering experience and an opportunity to put the shame and the ‘demons’ of the past to rest by publicly declaring that we are out, proud and love being who we are; lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.
Our message is a positive one; celebrating our journeys to resolution and self-acceptance. By marching together we also send a positive message to people in churches who are still locked in a prison of self-hatred.
Accepting our sexuality, coming out in a supportive environment and embracing being gay or lesbian, sets us free.
For more information please email [email protected]
General inquiries and to register your interest in marching with us please send an email to [email protected]
Unsure about the importance of participating in the parade? These articles may be helpful.