Posts in Unchanged Stories
Ethan Stalker

My life is drastically different than what it looked like a year ago. I publicly came out a few months ago and I have since experienced so much joy and freedom. My entire life I was suppressing a piece of me and because of that, I walked around as only half of myself. I was never fully present. Now I'm able to offer all of myself. I'm able to be fully present because I'm not worried about hiding a piece of who I am. I have had so many people tell me how much different my demeanor and spirit is since I've come out accepted my sexuality for what it is. Though my life looks completely different, I would not change a single thing.

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Weston Brown

The Liturgists Podcast episode 20 was a pivotal moment for me and the first time I came out to myself. God and the Gay Christian by Matthew Vines provided excellent support in bringing context to the verses I always understood to demonize anyone non-straight. From there, Twitter threads, blog posts, and YouTube videos all sharing the common thread of “I am ____ and I love Jesus” blew my mind and helped me realize I wasn’t alone.

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Kaitlin Park

My life is nothing like I imagined it would be. I take life day by day knowing that I am who I am and God celebrates with me. I am learning to find my voice after so many years of keeping silent, I am using my story to be the woman I needed to see when I was younger. This is for you, young Kaitlin; your life is so precious and it is okay that you’re not like your friends. I’m sorry I didn’t listen to you for a long time, and I’m sorry for the fear and shame you lived in. If you could see us now, I know you would cry with joy. I will be there for others in the ways I couldn’t be for you.

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Haley Osier

I started conversion therapy the very second I first felt feelings for the same sex. No one needed to enroll me in classes or call my parents or ship me off to camp. I started the work all on my own. As soon as I looked across the room, saw her*, felt that warmth in my stomach, I texted my friend and said, “Make me tell you something when I get home tonight.” Later on I called this friend and told her my entire history of being abused by both women and men and how I’d never really told anyone before, how I’d never handed it over to God to let Him deal with it, and how Satan must be using it to twist my affections toward a female friend. I later told all my college friends when we are back together after the holiday break. We made a pact right there over dinner at Chilis to get me out of Satan’s grips and back inside the will of God. They wanted to fix me, and I wanted to be fixed because it was either fix the gayness or spend a lifetime apart from God’s good and perfect plan for me by living in sin and depravity. It made for a pretty clear choice.  

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Emily Burke

While learning theology in the classroom and self-discovery in therapy sessions, I slowly began to believe that being LGBTQ+ wasn't a sin, at least it wasn't a sin for anyone else. For me, though, I had to fight my attractions. If I was LGBTQ+, especially if I actually allowed myself to pursue a non-heterosexual relationship, then I was sinning. For many years I was afraid that God and the church hated me, or at least would hate me, if they knew the true me, which included my attraction to women. Yet, I eventually realized that not being out was killing me, as I struggled with intense shame and suicidal ideation.

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