Daniel posted this originally in 2008 and now it has been added to his original story
Daniel 32 Gay – Ex-ultra-fundamentalist renews his faith
August 31, 2008 – 11:42am
I became a Christian at 14 when invited to join the International Churches of Christ in Melbourne. I already knew I was gay, but in my limited understanding that meant a life lurking in public toilets. Planned to kill myself to escape that fate and it was when I was on my way to do it that I was invited to church.
The next four years were the best times of my life up till then – and some of my best times ever. Sure it’d be easy to focus on the negatives to belonging to such a hardline cult, but the reality for a boy who’d never been popular and was suddenly surrounded with a massive extended family, was that it was kinda nice.
Only one thing kept me from sticking with it. I couldn’t change my sexuality. Oh, I wanted to. Almost every Friday night I spent the entire night in prayer, hoping that if I became spiritual enough my sexuality would change. I got ex-gay counselling. All the while I kept going to beats, not realising I was a sex addict (another issue altogether).
I left the church at 18 after my first love affair with a guy from the church failed (he dobbed us in). For years I wandered in the wilderness, faithless, wanting to connect to God but feeling like my sexuality prevented it, testing out all kinds of religions and philosophies.
Earlier this year I managed to connect with two penetecostal pastors who are looking at setting up a gay-accepting, but not gay-specific church. The foundation being that Jesus turned no one away. Questions continue to come up that challenge my faith, but the stuff that’s related to being gay has to do with my sexual addiction, nothing else.
I’m at the pleasant place where I can be gay and a fundamentalist Christian.
Love in Christ,
Daniel G. Taylor
Thought Leader • Writer • Speaker • Publisher
……..and here is his recent post
I’m sure I posted one of these two years ago when I first joined, but I couldn’t find my old one and a lot’s happened since then anyway.
As a child my Grandma was the only Christian in my family and I only saw her at Christmas time. When I moved in with her to escape a tough childhood, I joined a church, in part to impress her. Turns out they were superfundamentalists and you can all imagine what that was like for a gay teen coming of age.
A couple of years ago I started on a goal to read the Bible in a year. It took two years and one month, but I got it done. The result is that my character is stronger.
Along the way I started going to Adelaide’s Pilgrim Uniting Church. They have an interest in social justice and are super gay-friendly. But they’re very small and I’m one of the youngest members of the congregation.
I missed having people my own age who are into God. I also missed the Pentecostal style of worship….
So last week I joined one of Paradise Community Church’s Life Groups. Part of the appeal of Paradise is it has a strong focus on helping people lead their best possible lives. And because it’s such a large church, I’ll be able to find ways to use my unique talents.
The one thing that scares me, where I need courage and your support, is as I take on a role as a gay ambassador (if you like) in the church. I want to enjoy all the benefits of worshiping at Paradise but I want to do it as me. After seeing HillsBen’s story, I finally see how I can do good just by being openly gay.
It feels like a family. It feels good to reconnect with Paradise. If you go to Paradise and would like to connect, please say g’day.
I have the Internet again now and I’ll be in here at least once a week.
Thanks for your help and support.