Listen to the podcast interview.
Editor’s note: The website referenced below doesn’t exist anymore and redirects to a well-known dating service. The editors of this website make no representations as to the gay-friendliness of the redirected website.
If you’re gay or lesbian, you’re already in the minority. Add “Christian” to the mix and the population you’re included in shrinks even further. For gay Christians trying to network, or find a life partner of faith, the challenge becomes huge. Where do you go? The bars hold little promise and though we may meet our life partner at church, it’s hardly the intended setting for hooking up.
Justin Cannon understands the challenges gay and lesbian Christians face and hopes his new gay Christian personals site, dubbed “GayHarmony.net” can help.
“There are quite a number of gay personals Web sites and quite a number of Christian personals sites but there was no gay Christian personals site,” he said in a recent interview with Whosoever. “The Christian sites wouldn’t let gays on there and the gay sites weren’t the best atmosphere for gay Christians looking for a life partner.”
GayHarmony.net does ask that members be Christian but doesn’t require a certain profession of faith from its members. Instead, the site is ecumenical, open to any denominational background and creedal belief. In addition, Cannon said, GayHarmony.net can be used by gay Christians to find Bible study partners and simply to find a network of friends or pen-pals.
Cannon said he was motivated to found the site after receiving numerous emails from gay and lesbian Christians struggling to connect with others of faith.
“I get so many heart wrenching stories of people and their situations. These are the people I need to reach. I just know that there are people out there suffering. I was there, so I know what it’s like,” he said.
This is not Cannon’s first Internet endeavor. Just last year, when he was 20 years old, he started Truth Sets Free Ministries after struggling three years over whether or not scripture condemned homosexuality. His Bible study on the so-called “clobber passages” called “The Bible, Christianity and Homosexuality” was published and led to the Internet ministry of truthsetsfree.net.
Launching the Internet’s only personals site devoted to gay and lesbian Christians is not the end of Cannon’s aspirations. The Earlham College student hopes to attend seminary after graduation and become a priest in the Episcopal Church.
Whosoever founder and Editor Emeritus Rev. Candace Chellew (she/her) is the author of Bulletproof Faith: A Spiritual Survival Guide for Gay and Lesbian Christians. She earned her masters of theological studies at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology, was ordained by Gentle Spirit Christian Church in December 2003, and trained as a spiritual director through the Omega Point program of the Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta. She serves as the spiritual director of Jubilee! Circle in Columbia, S.C., and blogs at Motley Mystic.