Walking the Bridgeless Canyon | Repairing the Breach between the Conservative Church and LGBT Christians.

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[TEXT FOR HEARING IMPAIRED AT BOTTOM]

CROWDFUNDER  to raise $39,500 on FUNDERway  December 18 – February 15, 2014

PRE-ORDER BOOK at CANYONWALKERPRESS

“I was wrong.”cover_two-2

No one enjoys having to say those words.

Even worse: “I’ve been wrong for years. For decades.”

It’s humbling – I know from personal experience. But it’s better to find out than to live the rest of your life, not only having wrong beliefs, but also allowing them to affect the way you live your life and treat others — ultimately doing harm to your family, friends and the people around you.

I’m an Evangelical, heterosexual Christian and mother of two adult heterosexual homeschooled children. I was precisely in the target group I hope to reach. I used to vote against gay rights thinking it was “expected” of me to protect God, country, family and church.  I did not think “gay” or “transgender” and “Christian” could coexist, unless of course, gay people tried to become straight or remain celibate for life. I thought that constituted love.

Ten years ago, I held beliefs consistent with the majority of the conservative Christian community today.

Hiking the Sierra with my buddy Netto, God's gift to me to learn grace.

Hiking the Sierra with my buddy Netto, God’s gift to me to learn grace.

All that changed when I was met a gay person face-to-face and had my neatly-packaged, “nice” anti-gay theology turned upside-down.

Through a decade of research, I found out how we got to where we are on LGBT issues – why churches preach what they do, why conservative politicians run on anti-gay platforms, and why our society believes the things it does about gay and transgender people. It’s not as simple as some would have us believe – the myths and manipulations are clearly revealed in the book.

Once people see what I’ve seen, they may be forced to re-evaluate their beliefs about LGBT people and LGBT Christians.

My book, Walking the Bridgeless Canyon – Repairing the Breach between the Conservative Church and LGBT Christians and speaking tour uncover how we came to believe what we believe about LGBT people. It takes a holistic approach to the issue, focusing on separating layers of science, culture, history, psychoanalysis, politics and religion for examination.

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Research and discovery

It is more complex than “This is what the Bible says…” Unless we remove the filters distorting our view of Scripture, our 21st century minds remain stuck on translated words on a page.

Inclusion and civil rights for the LGBT community is a crucial social issue in our culture and a divisive wedge in churches. You’ve seen the walls go up as people choose sides in the debate over LGBT rights. Lines are drawn. Bible verses are quoted. Relationships are damaged and ended. People feel separated from God.

Christians need to be educated in order to shape wise and informed beliefs that more closely reflect the model of Jesus Christ.

My book (and I personally, on my speaking tour), respectfully engage the conservative church – those who are on the fence about LGBT people – and helps them makeTRP_0744-2 informed, educated decisions on what they choose to believe about LGBT people, faith and the church. It helps peel away those layers and decades of culture that have tainted our clear view of certain Scripture verses repeatedly used to discuss sexual orientation and gender identity.

Help me embark on this journey to educate, engage and encourage with Walking the Bridgeless Canyon – Repairing the Breach between the Conservative Church and LGBT Christians.

Help me launch a multi-city  (projected to be 20 cities) speaking tour in 2014.

Watch the video above for more information, or read through the transcript below.  And please – donate and share this page on Facebook, Twitter and any other social media you may use.

Thank you in advance for your support!

VIDEO TEXT:

“You’ve seen the debates raging in the church over LGBT, or lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Can people choose their sexual orientation or gender identity? How has our culture come to these issues? Can LGBT people marry? Can they marry in the church? Can they even be Christians?

With transman, Mateo

With transman, Mateo

If you’ve tried talking to your Christian family members, friends and pastors about inclusion for LGBT people, you know how frustrating it can be. You talk about love, they talk about “what the Bible says.” You talk about changing the paradigm; they talk about changing you. You stop talking; they stop talking. You go on with you life; they go on with theirs. Families and friendships suffer or are destroyed.

And if you’re not a Christian or connected to the Christian church, this conversation still affects you in ways you may not realize. Sure, there are some great resources out there now, but this one – this project — is different – it’s a game-changer — and I’ll tell you why.

Research and Discovery

Research and Discovery

 What I’ve come to realize in my decade of research is that this conversation won’t get anywhere until we first recognize the things that cloud our view of the Bible passages used to assess same-sex relationships. It’s far more complicated than simply reading the verses. There are things that have happened behind the scenes of history over the last century that we may be completely unaware of.

Like taking off dark glasses, my book helps carefully remove the lenses through which the conservative Christian church views the LGBT community. It carefully separates layers of science, culture, history, psychoanalysis, politics and religion for examination. And as each layer is stripped away, a more accurate reading of key Bible verses is possible. But we have to get through these layers before we can have a productive conversation about the Bible.

Although LGBT people and their allies will benefit, Walking the Bridgeless Canyon is a book you will feel comfortable giving to conservative Christians. This message is directed at them.

With an engaging and respectful tone, I invite conflicted Christians to really look at the influences and influencers that have helped shape their views of gay and transgender people. This is my tribe I am talking to. I am a heterosexual, Evangelical Christian. Heck, I even homeschooled my kids.

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Hiking in the canyons with Stan, Netto and Chris

I was just like many other conservative heterosexual Christians that frustrate LGBT Christians with their lack of understanding and resistance to other points of view. I’m not sure you would have liked me very much ten years ago.

I voted against gay rights, thought gays needed to change, and I was pretty sure I would not see gays in heaven unless they stayed away from gay sex.  And, I did it all because I “loved” gay people.

But then, through a gradual relationship with a lesbian I happened to meet on a hiking trail in Nevada, I got to know gay people, then gay Christians, then transgender people, then transgender Christians. I’ve listened to stories, pain, teachings and objections for lots of years. I’ve heard my gay and trans friends, and now it’s time for me to turn back to my tribe — the conservative Christian church — and talk to them; educate them.

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With Michael and Beau at Charlotte Pride

And that’s where you come in today. I want to go on the road, city to city, to impact and guide a different style of conversation. The conservative Christian church is in desperate need of cataract surgery to remove the lenses used to assess gay and trans people. Layer by layer, lens by lens, as the misconceptions and manipulations are removed, clarity can come.

Help me get there. Help me to walk in the canyon spaces between two sides of the conversation to guide respectful, productive and informed discourse. “Walking the Bridgeless Canyon” and the tour I’m asking you to help fund are about repairing the breach in the the wall of unity. God’s church is for all people, including His lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender believers. We need to get this message out – Christians need this education – and we can’t do it without your support. Donate today and I1452434_10202395933437725_920626601_n have some special gifts I’ll be able to send you.

You can check out the information on the page below to find out what you’ll get as a thank you. Donate, share this video with your friends and family on Facebook, Twitter, whatever social media you use.

Walk this bridgeless canyon with me, and let’s get this information out to those who desperately need it. Thank you so much for your support.”

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