Today, on Saturday, the General Assembly will enter into an open discussion regarding the multitude of overtures that it has received that touch on issues of human sexuality. In an effort to make sure that the space in which those discussions takes place is safe — that is to say that everyone who participates will feel free to express their feelings without fear of judgement or repercussions — the commissioners have been told that we must not text or tweet or blog about what happens in the hall.
I completely understand and respect those instructions. (Though I do think we could perhaps make a distinction between respecting private discussions around table groups and being able to report on what is done and said in open court.) I certainly want to do my part to make sure that everyone does feel safe to fully express themselves. I know how important that is to move forward.
So I am not going to blog about any of the discussions inside the meetings of the General Assembly. But I would like to talk about the discussion that I did have over supper on Friday night. I found myself eating with two old friends and colleages. I found the discussion quite uplifting. We all came from different backgrounds and different theological places on the spectrum. I would have placed both of my friends more on the conservative end of things than myself (not that that matters to me). And yet, we all found ourselves on the same wavelength as we discussed the so-called controversial overtures.
The wavelength was, essentially, “who cares.”
Of course, as soon as we said it we felt that we had to be clear.
We do care and care deeply about LGBT youth, for example, who are bullied or mistreated or thrown out of their homes because of their actual or perceived orientation. We do care about kids who kill themselves because they have been taught that they are unacceptable.
What we don’t really care about, honestly, is whether you are gay or lesbian or whatever. We just can’t be bothered to get worked up over that given the other things that are so very important out there. We just would like to deal with this and move on to issues that really matter — issues about poverty and income inequality and end of life and payday loans — issues that would absolutely do some good in this world.
It was just so very refreshing and uplifting to find myself talking with friends and respected colleages who are in exactly in the same place as me. I went into supper feeling somewhat apprehensive about the conversations before us. I left with much hope.
Whether that hope stays with me through this day, we’ll see, thought I am not entirely sure whether I can tweet that it will.