New to freedom2b 🙂

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Joined in 2012
June 28, 2012, 18:09

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to introduce myself.

My name is Ashleigh and I'm from Perth. I was born and raised Catholic and came out when I was 19 (I'm now 21).

I have been with my girlfriend for almost 3 years now.

I am struggling to find acceptance within the Church and because of that, I haven't attended Mass in quite some time.

My Youth Group weren't too keen on me staying with them, so I left.

I firmly believe that God does not judge us based on the gender of the people that we have relationships with, but I do sometimes struggle coming to terms with the fact that I have lost many of my old friends and have been asked to remain in the closet when it comes to extended family.

I am searching to join a new Christian denomination (even though I know that all still have some degree of disapproval) but I feel as though I need to find one that doesn't condemn who I am as strongly as the Catholic Church does.

My sexuality has never affected my faith in God but definitely has made me question my faith in the institution of religion.

Finding this website today, literally made my day.

I'd really love to learn about other people's experiences with the struggle between religion and sexuality and always happy to accept advice and opinions.


Ann Maree
Joined in 2008
June 28, 2012, 20:11

Hi Ash

It's great that you found us and you are very welcome here. 🙂

I've just moved your thread from the discussion section to this Telling our stories section. I see you've also started your story in another thread called 'Live to Love/ Love to Live'. That's excellent. So those reading this can also go to the other thread.

Have a read through some of the stories at your leisure and you will find many commonalities that you can relate with, I'm sure.


Ann Maree

Mother Hen
Joined in 2011
June 28, 2012, 20:17

Hi Ash,

Welcome to F2B, I'm so happy you came across this great bunch of awesome people. As you read some of the stories on this site you will find that many have struggled with their faiths and sexuality. It's great that you have never lost your faith in God, he accepts and loves you just the way you are. My son wrote an amazing assay when he was going through his own searching on what the scriptures really said about how God felt about people being Gay, you can find a link to that and other resources here if you are interested.

I know there are a few people on this forum from Perth, hopefully some of them will see you post and touch base with you. 🙂

God bless

Joined in 2009
June 28, 2012, 20:24

Welcome Ash! How did you find us?

We have some exciting things happening in Perth in the not-too distant future. It sounds like you've found us at just the right time =)

Being ostracised from churches and youth groups unfortunately seems to be something of a common theme for young LGBTI people of faith. I consider myself somewhat fortunate that I was already on a hiatus from church when this whole sexuality issue popped up for me. My partner and I attend a church now, but it's far from affirming. In fact given recent events I would no longer even call it welcoming, at least at the clergy level. At the personal level though there are still lots of good LGBTI-supporting people there, "fighting the good fight" as one of them told me last weekend.

So I guess finding a church you like will depend on exactly where you're wanting to feel supported. If you are OK with the people being supportive while the clergy less so, then I imagine it will differ even between local churches in the same denomination. But for a church to be supportive at all levels, a new denomination may indeed be the only option for some.

Joined in 2012
June 29, 2012, 10:42

Hey Ash! Greetings from Southern Cali.

Joined in 2012
June 29, 2012, 13:55

Thanks for all the support guys 🙂

Mother Hen, I did read that… it was amazing 🙂

Chris, I don't remember which website I was on, but I found a link to this one 🙂

It has been an internal battle deciding whether or not to change denominations (and one that faced fierce opposition from my family) but I really do not feel welcome in the Catholic church and don't feel like I can be part of a religion that blantantly makes LGBTI people feel like second class citizens. While I definitely don't agree with it, I do understand where many Christian 'anti-gay' views come from so I am remaining positive though and hopeful that I will find a new denomination and congregation that will be a bit more supportive :).

I have a meeting with a reverend from Uniting Church next week so I'm looking forward to hear what he has to say.

Youth Coordinator
Joined in 2008
June 30, 2012, 11:56

Hey there Ash,

Welcome to freedom2b! Hope you find this a safe and welcoming place. There are some great people here with inspiring and encouraging stories. 🙂

Sounds like you have had an difficult journey but I'm so glad that you have found love and have a wonderful girlfriend who you have been with for 3 years. I've almost been with my boyfriend for 2 years.

What I found helped me when reconciling my faith and sexual orientation was to seperate God and the church. While I believe that God is perfect, I believe that the church is flawed and is in need of as much grace and forgiveness as anyone else. I admit that I still struggle with trusting churches but I can still remain to trust in God because He never lets me down.

Did you grow up in church? Also, how does your girlfriend deal with your faith? Is she supportive?


Joined in 2008
July 2, 2012, 14:26

Hi Ash, welcome to freedom2b!

We are glad you found us and hope you can make some good connections through the website 🙂

As mentioned we are starting up a new chapter in Perth in October which you might be interested in. We are largely an online community so you can chat with people from all over the place and hopefully those from a catholic background can extend further wisdom as well as the encouragement you will get from others on the forum 🙂

Again good to meet you!

Warm regards


Joined in 2012
July 3, 2012, 18:50

Hi Ben,

Yes I grew up in Church. I really did love it until my teenage years when I began to see more hypocrisies and 'un-Christ-like' behaviour.

My girlfriend is supportive :). She's not religious herself, but understands and supports my faith :).

Michelle, definitely interested in anything coming up in Perth.. I'll keep an eye out 🙂

Joined in 2009
July 7, 2012, 09:47

Hi Ash

Hang in there – I am sure you will find a place to worship that is just right for you.

Good things are about to happen in Perth, so your inner searching is timely – God's timing is always perfect.

Take care


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