Editor: I would like to thank you for your online Christian magazine. It has, undoubtedly, saved my life. And I meant that statement literally. I found your magazine about two years ago when I was deeply struggling with my sexuality and my religion. I love God, I don’t care who knows it. I’ll scream it until my voice gives out if that’s what it takes. I would do anything my Lord asked of me, I am, no matter my joking or fun with God, committed to loving him. I have been working on my relationship with God ever since I found your e-zine. (You see, one of my many faults is that I am a sarcastic person and am guilty of being sacrilegious at times, though I know God knows my personality and my weird way of praising Him by teasing some of His fundamentalist followers, I’m really trying to stop even that because it’s not good, no matter how giggle-inspiring it can be.) Now, back from that tangent, I am finally sure that my sexuality is how God created me, for whatever purpose, and I thank you incessantly for assisting me a the most grateful and humble of ways helping me realize this. Tyler
Editor: Just wanted to thank you for the awesome website and articles. I am a fundamentalist Christian and a transsexual. I “came out” of my self-imposed prison after almost 32 years. I am male, I’ve always been male, and I always will be male. I just happened to be trapped in a female body. I had been regularly attending a local Vineyard church, and because God said, “Thou shalt not lie,” I was honest with my pastor about my “birth defect.” He said he hoped I hadn’t had anything done, and referred me to a Christian counselor. I didn’t go. I also haven’t been back to the church since, which hurts. I also have Christian friends, some of which have reacted very strongly to my change. I finally told them that I am a pseudo-hermaphrodite, with the parts of male and female inside. They accepted that with no problem, as long as I didn’t get “bottom surgery.” My defense is that I don’t know that it’s not true. I know I did spend a long time in the hospital as a baby and as a toddler. I feel very strongly that God has me going through this for a reason. After my transition, even during, I want to minister to others in the same boat. Right now, I wouldn’t wish this agony on my worst enemy. This is as close as I want to get to hell. Please keep me in your prayers. Scott
Editor: I have a question for you rising out of the Philip Yancey interview. 1. You are obviously a practicing Lesbian. Do you see your lifestyle in any way sinful? Regards Colin Brisbane Australia
Editor Candace Chellew responds: Colin, Well, I’m not sure what a “practicing” lesbian is, first of all. I am a human being who expresses their sexual orientation in a committed, monogamous and loving relationship. If that’s the definition of “practicing” can I assume you are a “practicing” heterosexual? As for seeing my “lifestyle” as sinful, I do not see any sin in having a 40 hour a week job, a house (along with a payment), a car (along with a payment), dogs and cats to feed, chores to do and taxes to pay as sinful at all. You see, that is the “lifestyle” I “practice.” I am a person who contributes to society with a solid middle class “lifestyle.” So, no, I do not see that “lifestyle” as sinful in any way whatsoever. Do you? Blessings, Candace
Editor: I am very concerned by an element of your website, Whosoever.org. I’ve been a regular reader of your site for several years now, and I’ve been very pleased with the gay-friendly ‘homospirituality’ that is professed. As a gay Christian, I decided to look through your site to see what books you might recommend that I could give my dad, to whom I have recently come out, so that he can understand a more liberal perspective on Christianity. On the page’s bookstore the first and only book that you list is ‘101 Frequently Asked Questions About Homosexuality’. Now, I haven’t purchased the book, but the description of the book on barnesandnoble.com is as such:
FROM THE PUBLISHER “For many, homosexuality isn’t just a societal issue…it’s very personal. A son or daughter reveals a long-standing struggle with same-sex attraction, a husband leaves his wife for another man, a coworker shows up at the office picnic with her female lover. In every case, there are questions we want to ask but are reluctant to voice. Here are the answers to the most often asked questions about homosexuality from an expert on the subject — and a former homosexual himself — Focus on the Family’s Mike Haley. Whether you’re personally impacted by homosexuality or simply concerned about this controversial issue…you’ll be informed and challenged by these 101 thoughtful questions and answers.”
I can’t imagine that a so-called “former homosexual” who is affiliated with Focus on the Family can possibly write an objective book that meets with the goals of this site! You may want to check out this book more carefully, or possibly find a better way to assess what books are listed in your online store. I would assume that things that you list here are things that you would approve…and if you approve what this sounds like it is, there is a problem. Thanks for your time! Mike
Editor Candace Chellew responds: Hey Mike, I understand your concern. When Whosoever first started I coded all the bookstore stuff by hand, choosing the books, etc. But with so many good books out there it soon became hard for me to keep up with new releases. The bookstore grew stale so I farmed it out to a service that gives a wider selection, and yes, includes the books from the “other side” of the issue. I understand that it can be disturbing to run across these books linked to Whosoever, but it really can’t be helped. I’m a one woman show here, basically, and the bookstore proved to labor intensive to cull out the “bad” books from the “good.” So, it’s kind of a necessary evil at this point. I hope you can understand that! Blessings, Candace
Editor: I just sent your link to a very dear friend, a Christian in the deep south whose church is unfortunately quite bigoted. I am hoping that your wonderful site might help her navigate towards psychological/spiritual peace.
Thanks so much!
Norlyn (A Unitarian)