I was not ‘there’ in 1988, wherever that location was; neither General Council, pastoral charges, boards or sessions. I was not in a faith community then, nor had I ever been.
I have, however, lived with the conflict and struggles of white male heterosexual cultures whose ideas and beliefs based on fear caused hurt, pain and deep divisions in my family of origin.
Bare, blackened scorched earth has been the feelings deep within me. When I joined the United Church of Canada (UCCan) as a 26 year old woman I did not know ‘our’ story. I discerned and answered a call to ministry. In the past 17 years I’ve been discovering the legacies of pain, silence, yet also the hope and risk found in opening the tomb. I seek to live in love, grace and peace with my family of origin and my church family seeking to find the path toward honest, just and right relationships. As I hear my Dad’s voice saying, “Oh, you joined that Gay Church,” I respond with love, not anger living into the future possibilities.
Signed, Melanie Kauppila
(Shared with permission. Photo: Wix.)