Posted by: JennyRain | April 12, 2010

Will They Laugh if I Call You Daddy? Growing Up With a Gay Father: Day 1

I have known that I need to write this blog post for awhile.

It has just been a hard one to write. There’s a lot of history in this post. There’s people’s hearts and lives I care for in this post.

Including mine.

Last week Trisha and Justin at RefineUs wrote a post called Judgmental People Make Me Sad that crawled all-kinds-of-up-under-my-skin. For days.

A good kind of crawling.

You know what I’m sayin?

I have worked hard to push myself into the realm of consistent transparency… and reading this post convicted me that what follows is a part of my story I haven’t shared yet. A part that has had a tremendous impact on who I am, and who I am becoming.

I will be discussing this, blogging about this, working this through in my blog posts this week.

Day 2, Day 3

I am the child of a homosexual father.

Ugh. That sounds so clinical.

My daddy is gay.

Eesh. That just sounds ghetto.

My dad is my dad. How he might be labeled by society doesn’t change a thing about how I feel about him.

Now, that may make a few others look at me a bit cross-eyed, but that’s ok. I have a great set of parents that I am super proud of.

I’m glad I have the exact set of FOUR parents that I have.

And it has made the last thirty-nine years of my life interesting, that’s fo sho!

So… where do we go from here? How about to the questions that are formulating in all your brains right now!

Oh, and in case you are wondering why all of these stories seem to have come tumbling out of me this last several months… I’ll be talking about that this Wednesday on Day 3 of this series. Now on to the questions…

1 – What is it like having a gay father?

The same as having any other kind of a father.

Christmas 2007

Dads are as unique as the summer sunshine peeking its nose out all around the world. My dad has strengths just like any other person, and weaknesses. We have had good times and bad. We have laughed and cried together. But in the end, we are family, and family is precious.

I will be discussing this more on Day 3.

2 – How exactly did you – ah – come to be here on the earth if your dad is gay?

Well… lemme take you back to the birds and the bees, mmm’kay? My dad and mom were married for over ten years and it was during that time they had me. Β Dad remembers it like it was yesterday and typically proceeds to tell every new boyfriend alllll about my birth.

My only relief from this extremely embarrassing story? Marriage to John. Although, now dad has a whole ‘nother arsenal of stories.


So does mom.


Anyway, how the whole “sex” thing happened I think we all know. And they are my parents, so I won’t go into detail.

Perhaps the real question is..

3 – Did your dad know if he was gay when he married your mom?

I am not sure. We’ve talked a little about it.

Mom says she knew – before they got divorced – and I think dad knew deep down too. I know back in the day when I was born (that would be the 70’s) it was socially acceptable to get married, have kids, and live your life. Homosexuality did not figure into the equation.

So, dad got married to mom, and here I am!

4 – How does your evangelical Christianity and the reality of having a gay father mesh?

I am not going to lie. Not well.

The most difficult conversations, reactions, and judgment I have received is from the Christian community. Tune in to Day Two to read more about this.

It sucks.

Christianity is all up in arms about the “issue” of homosexuality, but to me, its not an issue, its my dad.

Homosexuality has a face. I see it every time I look at my sweet father.

I spent a lot of years hurting over things other Christians said about homosexuality.Β Some of the most heinous gay jokes I have heard are not from the secular community, they are from Christ followers.

It’s pretty bad.

But it happens. And it is a part of my life. It’s also a part of my dad’s life.

Despite the occasional bumps, this is still the community I choose to be a part of because for all of our flaws… in a pinch… it is Christ followers who ante up to the plate when I am in need.

People are people, we all have our hangups, areas that make us uncomfortable, areas we want to distance from, and sometimes our need to feel comfortable in our own surroundings causes us to say some pretty strange things to people around us, even unintentionally.

People need to feel safe, and this is one of those things that tends to knock people out of their safety zone.

I get that.

5 – So you said “four” parents… explain:

My dad and his partner have been together thirty-two years.


If John and I are together for thirty two years, he will be seventy six! I will be… well… older.

My mom and step-dad got married when I was pre-teen, so I have a long history with all of them. I am the person I am because of the influence of each one of them, and I can’t imagine my life without even one of them in the exact form that they are currently in.

All mushed together in one big happy dysfunctional glob. Just kidding πŸ™‚

Dad, me, John, and Dencil

Val (step-sis in law), Mom & George, Me & John, Bill (Step-bro) & the pups

6 – Theologically, do you think your dad’s homosexuality is a sin?

This is the question I always get asked when people find out I’m a follower of Christ and my dad is gay.

Seriously folks, I am not an expert on sin. God is. Furthermore, there are far too many of us Christians walking around saying, “I think… I think….I think…”

It’s not about what I think, its about Who I know.

Forgive me if I’m presumptuous, but Christianity is about Who we know, is it not?

Besides, I fully trust that God has all of the answers, so I don’t need to.

Do I think God made a mistake in giving me the exact father I have right now, unequivocally NO. God is sovereign and the last time I checked, God does not make mistakes. Nothing in my fathers or my life has suprised God, He knew every millisecond of both of our lives, before we took our first breath. (Psalm 139)

But the LORD is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him… Hab 2.20

7 – Genetically, do you think your dad was born gay, or he made a choice?

The maddest I have ever been is when Newsweek magazine came out with an article on February 24, 1992 stating that “Homosexuality is Genetic.”

It infuriated me.

Whether homosexuality is genetic or whether it is by choice should not impact our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors toward others.Β God has created each one of us in His image. That fact alone qualifies each person on this planet as deserving of respect and kindness. Whether a person is ontologically gay (by genetics) or gay by “training” (nurture) should not alter our behavior towards anyone in that community.

Period, y’all!

See, the imago Dei gives every single one of us worth and value because it is bestowed on us by the Creator Himself. The fact that we are all created in the image of God needs to be first and foremost in our hearts as we choose to interact with others.

Not what we think others are or are not. Not an evaluation of someone as having tainted, disrupted, or stained that image or not. Not what our opinions, our feelings, our prejudices are.

Have we not all tainted the imago Dei inside of us in some way?

Compassion is a direct result of the realization of the inherent worth and value of every living person. Having the life experiences that I have had with my dad has grown my compassion and taught me mercy.

Dad says he has learned the same things as a direct result of what he has experienced.

And compassion – it’s worth it.

Having the exact dad God has blessed me with – he’s worth it too.

Tune in toΒ Day 2 tomorrow and Day 3 wednesday

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

The Lord has promised good to me.
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.




  1. You are so strong and brave for sharing your heart and your story like this. Seriously. SO strong. SO brave.

    • thank you friend πŸ™‚ have fun w/sara this week!

  2. πŸ˜‰ Amen!

  3. What guts it took to write this, Jenny, and I’m so proud of you. I love your point–following Christ is about showing love, love, love, regardless of labels or philosophies, genetics or choice.

  4. all I can say is…wow. You have brought me to tears once again. I appreciate so much the courage it takes for you bear your soul in this way. It is amazing to see how God is growing you as you’ve entered a new stage in your life. I know this has been a difficult aspect of your life – but it is what it is. I agree, God doesn’t make mistakes and your dad is your dad by God’s design.

    All of us, by nature, want to LABEL these kinds of subjects and drop them into neat little boxes so we don’t have to think about them any more. That’s not what God requires of us as followers of Christ. We are to treat all with love and compassion. Many have not had to work through that to the level that you have.

    Thanks for sharing this – I’m looking forward to the rest of your blogs.

  5. This has been so good for me to read. One of my closest friends is gay. She and her partner are some of the most wonderful people in the world. Nate and I love them so much.
    My friend is just amazed that I’m friends with her, knowing I am a Christian. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT?!
    I am with you-who are we to judge anyone? And, yes, what does God look like – LOVE and we are to bear his image – so why do Christians taint this image?
    If we do not become missional, and TAKE Christ to people instead of beckoning people to come TO the church, we will lose in the end. People want authenticity, vunerability and sincerity, not a list of what’s right and what’s wrong.
    I’m looking forward to reading more.
    And, you may think I’m totally crazy, but I truly look forward to the day the Lord may join us together again in ministry work. You have such a gift and I am so thankful to know you.

    • thank you friend – I LOVE your worship site! so proud of you guys… and I too am excited when our ministry paths will cross again… I can’t wait. I know we met for a reason and I am so glad πŸ™‚

  6. I don’t know if I would have the courage to set these thoughts down on paper. And, to be honest, I don’t know if I would want to – but thats my nature. This is not being judgmental about the fact that your father is gay, this is just me (left hand doesn’t tell right hand its secrets). As you say, your father is still your father gay or straight. I’m afraid religion has ‘attitude’, and has a lot to answer for over the centuries. When all those who preach religion are without blame, then we might all live together in harmany. Just as your fammily has learned to do.

  7. I think it is an extremely difficult path to walk, dealing with homosexuality from within Evangelicalism, because of the doctrines but more so the culture around it. And I think you do a beautiful job of walking that path. You explain that especially well in your item #7. Very glad WordPress linked to your blog today.

  8. I think Julie’s response pretty much summed up what I was thinking. We are Christians. We are supposed to love people. We’ve never been able to, nor will we ever be able to change anyone. It’s not our job. We are to love. Simply!

  9. thank you for sharing your story. we need to be less judgemental and more compassionate and loving towards the world around us. if more people were like you, there would be less conflict in the world. i have a recipe journal blog in which i dedicate a page to what i want my children to remember about life when i’m gone in “words to live by”. tolerance, love and respect should prevail in the world.

  10. Perhaps God gave you this wonderful father (who happens to be gay) in order for you to bring the love and acceptance you feel to your evangelical community?

    Just a thought…I cannot presume to know the will of the Universe. Regardless you’ve shown genuine intelligence and heart in this piece. Thank you.

    • The will of the Universe? Puleeze lady.

    • “to bring the love and acceptance you feel to your evangelical community?”

      Ahhh I had never thought of it like that… hmmm, thank you for that perspective πŸ™‚ I very much value your insight about this and – wow – I can’t believe I hadn’t thought about that before…

  11. A very interesting post.

  12. I really enjoyed this post. As I read the New Testament, I’m struck by how Jesus is HARDEST on the hypocrites. I was brought up to be judgmental about homosexuals, and yet, as I lived my life, some of the nicest people in it were homosexual – go figure! For awhile, I had negative judgments about the gay “whole,” while reserving a better opinion of the gays I personally knew, but at some point I realized that in holding two opinions like that, I was sinning as a hypocrite. Because Christ is my Lord, I don’t want to sin, and I recognized my need to return to “love your neighbor as yourself.”
    Bless you and your father and your beautiful family. Thank you for sharing your love and insight.

  13. Brave post friend. Thank you for the risk of trandparency. I know you will bless a lot of people by your courage. I hope you are feeling him in your gap today.

  14. Thank you for sharing your story, it was a good read. Keep on posting!

  15. Loved your blog and looking forward to the next parts as they are published. Great to see that you love your dad no matter what that is what Christ did, loved us unconditionally. Bravo to you!

    Marvi Marti

  16. He is very fortunate to have you for a loving
    daughter. I was married, had son and daughter, now two grandsons. Opposite
    reaction….I haven’t heard from them since.
    God Bless!

    • it definitely took us a long time together there Jacub… many many years, lots of pain, lots of prayer, lots of patience, and I was bitter for many years… I’m so sorry that you have had a tough experience with your family, that breaks my heart to hear.

      Jacub, I will definitely keep you and your family in my prayers… and thanks for having the courage to share too.

  17. You have a beautiful family. Thank you for sharing your family and your story to us. πŸ™‚

    • thank you πŸ™‚ you encourage me! I do have an amazing family πŸ™‚

  18. Great post,

    I a desi (South Asian) woman and my best friend for ever (African American man) join you on this one. God, makes no mistakes and he created us all out of kindness and compassion to feel it and practice it.
    Rightly said, it is for the God to judge for our sins. He did not leave anyone of us incharge to judge, neither the church.


    Desi Girl

  19. You’re amazing for talking about all of this. I like how you discuss and make decisions based on the discussion within the post.

    My only niggle – being gay is not a personal choice.


  20. Jenny,
    You are a woman of substance and faith, God be with you. Jim

  21. I find it so interesting that one of the biggest problems in religion (not faith) is that people are very quick to judge others that are trying to walk a similar walk. If I am Christian, do I now have a free pass to judge other Christians? If I am Jewish could I tell my fellow Jew just what they are doing that’s so wrong? I believe some people who associate their identity with religion feel entitled to judge others — and that entitlement is a huge reason people dislike religion. When will people get that “you may not like my choices (or the choices of those I love), but God did not put you here to judge me”?

    I know you’ve heard some terribly ignorant and insensitive things and good for you for sharing a part of your life that welcomes judgement. I hope that your post finds someone who may have not thought twice before saying something judgmental on sexual preferences and leaves them with the idea to keep thoughts private.

    Consider this: If one person leads a simple, pure, faithful life and another person swears, does drugs, drives too fast, has multiple sexual partners of both genders, has multiple marriages, cheats the government, burns flags, wears provocative clothing and is in jail for murder … who does God love more? Neither, they are both loved equally in the eyes of God. Those who don’t agree or understand should embrace silence.

    I think the biggest challenge God gave us to navigate is hypocrisy – our own and others. I look forward to the rest of your series πŸ™‚

    • well stated… you always have great examples and can draw out a topic in such incredible ways… thank you πŸ™‚

  22. I really enjoyed reading your post! It is amazing to me that we, as a society, are still struggling with accepting one another and serving our communities where they are at and not where we think they should be…I agree with you on so many levels and I look forward to reading more of your blogs.

  23. Sending love and hugs, you go girl!

  24. Beautiful! I am so glad I clicked on the link on the front page. Well said!

  25. I’m also glad I clicked this link from the main page. I’m going to share it on my publisher’s group. Many authors there will appreciate this.

  26. Thank you, Jenny. My aunt is gay. She and her grown daughter just left my house after a 3 day visit. I love them very much and I try to be a good witness for Christ. This blog is exactly what I needed to read. Praise God that no sin is worse than the next…I just pray that they will accept Jesus as their Savior one day soon.

  27. This is a truly beautiful post. I’d love to share the link with others if that is okay. I think a lot of what you mentioned is the reason why i seem to have lost what little religion I had. Growing up the worst gossips where always in my church congregation. I know I probably should have just tried a new church but as i got older i just got sick of the whole ‘Sunday Christian’ thing and kind of went my own way. I love that you can have so much faith and still love your dad. I wish everyone saw things as clearly as you do. If so things would be radically different for a lot of us. Well said and thank you for having the courage and conviction to write about this.

    • Hi Beth – absolutely – you may share it and my prayer is that it helps others too.

      I don’t always see things clearly… this has been a long journey. It’s because of my faith that my love for my dad has grown too… thank you so much for stopping by and please come back… I’ll be finishing out the series this week

      blessings as you share

  28. I’m proud of you

    and personally I know that the Lord has placed your dad as your dad in your life, because it impacted mine. Of course the Lord would know that my gay friend would bring me back to Christ, as I had a friend in my small group with a gay dad. The Lord knows all and I love it that we get to catch glimpse’s of His mighty work in our lives here on earth.

    one life ripples another so all can come to know Him

    • thank you friend… love you πŸ™‚ so glad God crossed our paths… SO very glad… my life is so much richer because you are in it πŸ™‚

  29. So glad I found this post. I’m an atheist but I’m a member of a church that preaches unconditional love and acceptance based on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The reason I’m a member is that I want to support the work of radical inclusiveness that challenges homophobia and bigotry as it is practiced in too many church communities. I have seen so many people I love struggle with self-hatred and shame because their church has taught them that the fundamental fabric of their selves is a sin. To watch folks step into the light where they can feel loved by the God they worship – not just tolerated or accepted, mind you, but CELEBRATED for who and what they are – has been a truly life-changing experience for me. It gets me up every Sunday morning so I can lend my strength to the work of a community of faith, as crazy as that sounds for an atheist. I’ve read the words of Jesus, who was an awesome activist and muckracker no matter what else one believes about him, and they were about unconditional love and acceptance. Period. No other interpretations are possible. If you and your father are ever in San Francisco, come join us at Glide Memorial Methodist Church, and feel the vast joyfull love and support that’s available there. Keep writing, keep loving. Congratulations to your father for raising a child who can love without limits.

  30. I don’t know you, as I stumbled upon this post on the front page, but you have summed up my personal beliefs about life and religion pretty succiently. I am gay and my main issue with religion was that they told me I was sinning. My thoughts are with yours as God made me who I am, God makes no mistakes and I have a purpose. I live my life full of love and am unapologetic for who I am. I have however turned away from organized religion. Your story I believe is very indicative of how a majority of free thinking Christians believe and practice. You have really put a face on religion/spirituality that people care and love for others and accept them as God made them, and I appreciate it.

  31. This was an amazing blog. Thank you for sharing. It has inspired and touched me.

  32. Wonderful post, and brave. Your dad sounds so cool, as do you. I am always amazed by so-called Christians and their take on homosexuality. I don’t recall that Jesus had anything to say on the subject (unless you read between the lines on that eunuch bit) but I do know that he preached inclusion, not exclusion. One of my dearest writing friends was raised in a strict fundamentlist religion – as a little girl, she was taught to cross the street when a homosexual came along. She still lives in that same small Midwest town, still goes to that same church. Yet today she writes M/M fiction.

    • thank you Victor… this astounds me …”as a little girl, she was taught to cross the street when a homosexual came along.”

      it is heartbreaking… and it makes me sad.

      my dad IS cool πŸ™‚ And it took us a long time to get there… lots of pain, tears, and now we get to experience more joy and peace. I’m so thankful for that

  33. Hi everyone… I am SO incredibly humbled and honored by your comments.

    Wow. just reading some of them have brought me to tears. This is such a difficult topic for me, and the grace and kindness in which you have all responded … there are just no words for it… I am just so thankful for each of you.

    You each bring up such relevant points, I can see many of you bring questions, and pain, and joy, and thoughts… I value your feedback so much, it is a blessing.

    If these posts can encourage and bless even one person… and if they can help someone heal or help them bring encouragement to another, then risking sharing this story is worth it.

    Thank you to all of you – you have blessed me more than words can say today…


  34. Greetings from India.

    Whatever my views are regarding this gay issue – let me first commend you on your bravery to make this public. It takes guts to write so much of truth inspite of going through a lot of Pain. Hats off to you. I mean it.

    I have never been a gay rights activist. I have always believed that homosexuality is against the law of nature. I dont know if you have pondered about this. I dont know if it helps, but I dont see any harm in advocating people to be straight.

    I wish you to be happy for the rest of your life. God bless you dear.

    • thank you for responding from India! πŸ™‚

      i have processed this from every imaginable angle… watched my dad’s life, how this has impacted him, me, so many parts of our lives… i have struggled, gotten angry, talked to God, raged at God. i went to seminary and dissected the scriptures… evaluated them, redissected them… talked to my husband… prayed… you name it.

      in the end… i am drawn back to the same answer time and time again. there are things in this world that i will never fully understand – and that is ok. my job is to love my dad – that is what God has called me to do – and He reminds me of it time and time again… how that fleshes itself out may look differently depending on what season we are in (sharing the gospel, listening, ministering, just spending time together)… so my job is to follow God and trust that He is capable of transforming hearts.

      that’s nice and ambiguous isn’t it πŸ™‚ thank you so much for visiting – you are an encouragement πŸ™‚

    • There’s nothing wrong (you’re right) with straight people just as long as they don’t rub it our noses.

      Sounds patheic doesn’t it!? Exactly.

      I don’t murder, rape, pillage or any of the 10 commandments in fact – I just happen to live with and love someone from the same sex as me. I was born this way – GOD made me this way. I don’t care who YOU sleep with – please don’t bother yourself with whom I sleep with.

    • Please consider this as another perspective. If as a gay person, I were to go out and marry a woman and have kids; to live the straight life. Would I not be sinning by living a lie simply to satisfy society’s view on the subject. By NOT telling your family you are gay when in fact you are, then you are lying to them by holding back the truth. If you cannot live life truthfully, then it is not worth living.

  35. Great post and so lovingly written. I like to quote my daughter’s Facebook statement regarding religion: “Just be nice, please.”
    Love is what counts, right?

  36. This is a lovely post in every way, and thank you for including your beautiful photos.

    Every individual and family has a story that is unique. It’s our differences that make us special. It’s our humanity that makes us united. Getting to know your story allows each reader the opportunity to expand our view of humanity, and our capacity to understand. We can each stretch ourselves a little higher and live a little better when we come to know each other’s challenges and joys. In order to have God in our lives, we must have love. Jesus taught that those who love him will keep his commandments. And His commandments were to love unconditionally [Matt 22]. I think your post is a real-world example of applying that teaching.

    You also exemplify Paul’s instruction:

    “And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment” – Phillip. 1:9

    Life is such a gift! Best wishes on your journey – HK

  37. I had to answer to this post.
    I thought it wasn’t possible to make religion and a gay father walk along in the same lane, but luckily you did.
    I’m gay and most of my friends are; just like I’m an atheist and most of my friends are. I just thought it unacceptable that the Christian church demanded a feeling of guilt from gay people in order to accept them.
    Reading this made me feel like religious people can grow shoulder-to-shoulder to gay people without pointing sharp fingers. It convinced me that tolerance has had its way among Christians, and plus made me feel more keen to accepting Christians back.
    Oh, and that’s something to be proud of. Haha.

  38. FANTASTIC post! I loved reading it. Thanks for sharing!

  39. It was partially the hatred I’ve seen by the religious to homosexuals that spurred me to really leave the church – I didn’t understand how they could preach love and practice hate. I’m an atheist, but I’m glad you’ve meshed your faith with tolerance of other human beings.

    • he’s my dad… how can I not love him πŸ™‚

      religion is broken… you are right. I will talk a little about that tomorrow. I’m so sorry you have had such difficult experiences with communities of faith… that is most definitely not how it should be. We often represent Christ in unattractive ways… our job is to show you what it looks like to be in relationship with an incredible Creator God through His son Jesus Christ… unfortunately, it sounds like all you have been served is a religion sandwich and for that – I am very sorry. that breaks my heart to hear how we have hurt your faith journey…

  40. Wonderful post thankyou.

    I am gay – and no I did not choose to be this way. Why would anyone choose to be persecuted, hated, demonised, misunderstood, threatened, ridiculed and beaten?

    Sadly, and very ironically these above things were exactly what Jesus went through himself! So itis with constant disbelief that the very followers of jesus (amongst other religions) continue to muisunderstand and persecute. The only sin being committed is by them and their small minds!

    As a gay man, I would absolutley love to have children. To do so would require so much – things that sadly heterosexual parents do not think of before having children they can ill afford or know how to bring up! I’m surrounded by ‘straight’ supposedly normal parents who shout and hit their children – give me a loving, caring and supportive home environment anyday with 2 gay mothers or fathers!

    And for those people still foaming at the mouth at this quite striaght forward suggestion about love and humanity, I have one other thing to say! From the knowledge of my strict Cathlolic upbringing, it is the priests who are the most likely to be gay! I know many let me tell you!

    Sadly, most religious people are hypocrites – but really shouldnt be casting the first stone…

    • thanks for reading Al… and thanks for your transparency. I find that in the telling of our stories – no matter how raw and real they are – we can find freedom. I have sought to make this blog a place where people of different life-stories can come together and get encouragement and Lord willing – see Christ’s light -that is my prayer. thank you for sharing in honesty… from your heart… I am sorry this community I am still a part of has hurt your heart… but I thank you for entering the discussion today again…

      • Thankyou Jenny πŸ˜‰

        I’m not surprised however to see that I was given a thumbs down by some narrow minded sinful person! Teehee

        God bless you, your Father and your family x

  41. One of my closest friend’s father came out in January of 2008. She was 20 years old. It was right after her parents divorced.
    She still struggles with it sometimes, more the pain of divorce than his sexuality, I think. It’s weird for her to see the dad that she has seen with her mom for 20 years now be with a man (he has a partner now). I can tell her frustration when she comes back from visiting home.

    Thanks for the post!

  42. I agree with your bravery for sharing all this. I was once heard “Courage comes in many forms”and you definitely are displaying courage here. For the record, I am a born-again Christian and I do believe that homosexuality is a sin.

    Nevertheless, I could see how it would be difficult to hear people talk about your dad as a “topic” and overlook him as a person.

    • Thanks Debra… I appreciate you posting. I have loved following all of the responses to this and value everyone’s feedback so much. I am so very thankful for my own Christian community – conservative, evangelical … which has been its own interesting balance for me. I’ll talk a little more about that tomorrow … thanks so much!

  43. Wow. What a read. I have lots of gay friends. I have had 2 gay bosses who were incredibly good to me.

    I really don’t usually think anything of it and how it fits into Christianity because well I know those are questions I will never really understand.

    And I know…we ALL are SINNNERs and have no room to judge. I believe a sin, is a sin, is a sin. And I am not scratching my head why I was born with a propensity to gossip.

    Can’t wait to read what else you have in store this week!

    • “I am not scratching my head why I was born with a propensity to gossip.”

      I’m so glad its not just me with this problem – thanks Lindsey – I appreciate you weighing in and I value your feedback πŸ™‚

  44. Beautiful, beautiful! The ground beneath the cross is LEVEL. Brava!

  45. If you’ve got a problem with the fact that so called Christians have a problem with your dad being gay, I think you have to choose between Christianity and your dad. I’d choose your dad.

  46. As a lesbian and a Unitarian Universalist, I really appreciated reading his post about your relationship with your father and your religion. Compassion is at the core of all the world’s religions and there’s room for compassion in all of our hearts–but sometimes we forget this and distance ourselves from others. While “compassion” is the word I try to live my life by, I’ve never had a very good working definition of it besides “empathy for others.” I’m glad I stumbled across your blog today, because your definition of compassion–“a direct result of the realization of the inherent worth and value of every living person”–is the best I’ve ever seen.

    • Thank you Crystal and welcome πŸ™‚ so glad you joined the conversation πŸ™‚

  47. The most important thing is the love bestowed on you by your 4 parents. From your blog I can tell they raised you to be a confident, caring person. What more is there? To love and be loved, unconditionally. I applaud you for taking on the task of enlightening others that a loving family can take many forms. North Coast Muse @

  48. How beautiful and how loving. What an amazing tribute to your family!
    I too am a Christian and homosexuality does have a face. For you, it’s your Dad. For me, it’s my daughter’s godfather, my dear, dear friend – so close he could be my brother.
    I am so thrilled you had the courage to post this.

  49. […] But as important as the word “compassion” is to me and my spirituality, I’ve never been able to come up with a good working definition of it besides β€œhaving empathy for others.” Today, I had the joy of stumbling across a blog by an evangelical Christian minister who provided me with the best definition of compassion I’ve ever seen: “compassion is a direct result of the realization of the inherent worth and value of every living person.” She mentioned this while talking about her love for her gay father and urging the Christian community to remember that … […]

  50. Thank you for your transparency. My dad is also gay and it is a hard thing to deal with being in the christian community. My dad came out when I was 20 (4 yrs ago) It was hard to deal with for me. I was working at a church and feared for my job because of how harsh people can be. It’s been a process and it’s still quite new, but he’s my dad and always will be.

    • Lynse… thanks for sharing. It is SO good to meet another “child of” – sometimes it can get a little lonely. I have ALL those same thoughts as you too… I too work at a church – conservative evangelical. it’s like my dream job, i love it, i adore my community of faith… and i love my dad. sooo hard to reconcile all that. I’m so thankful we serve an amazingly good God πŸ™‚

      • it is a very lonely place at times. and there are still people that judge…but we do serve an amazing God! Thanks again for posting. always nice.

      • you got it girl! I read this morning two scriptures that kept me focused on this… Col 3:2 (set your affection on things above)… and Hosea 14.8 (It is I who answer you and look after you… from ME comes your fruit)… love that in all things and through all things… God is still God. SOOO glad you have visited… it’s nice to know there are others like me – kids of πŸ™‚ Bless you!

  51. Hey Jenny,
    Thanks for showing us how to love.
    Peace & Grace,

  52. I bet that you were nervous in typing this blog and when you hit publish, you may have been relived. I did not read any comments above but wanted to tell you that you are a strong woman with a loving family and that is all that matters. Your parents will always be your parents and always there for you – what others think … hey just them them think.Your family will always be there for you while others come and go. Stay positive! πŸ™‚

    • thank you… I think I’m more nervous about tomorrow… eek πŸ™‚ thank you SO much for the encouragement… that means the world to me… i am just so humbled and thankful from all of the support and encouragement… wow…

  53. Jenny, your inspired post and the thoughtful comments you Sparked give ME hope. Thank you all.

  54. Thank you for being so transparent. That takes a lot of courage!

    I wrote a difficult post myself last week. It was hard to get it out there, but I felt so much better after I did!

  55. Jenny,

    Keep persevering! Debra sent me to read this blog post of yours and i’m glad.

    I’ve seen someone with same sex attraction change by the glory of God. It’s really amazing! But even if your dad doesn’t ever change, you have a great foundation you are walking on. Stand strong. Keep the narrow path. It’s worth it.

  56. Thanks for this post Jenny.

    I’m the daughter of a lesbian mom and I would like to credit her for a major part of who I am today as well. If it weren’t for her, I don’t think I would be as accepting of the differences in others- it has truly opened my eyes to how different we all are and that we should cherish those differences. In the end, she is my mom- a beautiful human being who has laughed with me, cried with me, supported me during dark times, and celebrated in my successes.

    I advocate all the time on behalf of gay rights because it truly pains me and brings me to tears to see her have such a loving relationship with her partner (they’ve been together 15+ years) and not be able to acknowledge that legally.

    Out of all the relationships I have seen in my life, my moms exemplify to me what a truly loving relationship is like.

    Anyway, thanks again- I think that the more people hear situations like ours, maybe they won’t be so quick to judge and hate.

  57. Thank you for sharing this. I saw a link to it on one of Beth Wylde’s mailing lists. As one who is gay, and has been Christian, I could relate to much of what you shared here.

    I am pretty much an outcast from the church, these days, but the strange thing is, I’ve never felt cast out, or cast off, by God, or by Christians who understand that compassion means seeing the value in all people no matter what.

  58. this is amazing. absolutely amazing. you’ve got me hooked on your blog just from reading this one. πŸ™‚

  59. This was really captivating. Standing by what you believe even when others were against it. I love how you brought up the fact that no matter why people are gay we shouldn’t look at them differently or mock them because of it. God makes no mistakes. Amen. C;

  60. While I had a long list of grievances with a number of religions and how they treat and represent gay individuals, I enjoyed to read your article and I respect someone who believes in their religion but doesn’t use it as a means to condemn others who don’t believe the same.

    The topic caught my eye especially because I am a gay man who has been in a relationship for 16 years, and we are expecting the 1st of my genes in autumn. He has 2 other children, both of whom have never had a problem with our relationship although others have. But for someone like myself, it is not about being gay at all, as I don’t think of it that way (others do), my partner is my best and live long friend foremost. My blog deals mostly with growing up an orphan in the Soviet Union, and as a person they considered unworthy (I am deaf) and simply trying to survive despite the horrors of what people do to one another.

    Honestly, some children have so much more to deal with than just having “two fathers” or “two mothers”. The people, groups or religions looking to denounce or deny others would be better focussing on making the world a better place for all people, especially children, just because it is the right thing to do, and not because it has to do with a religion.

  61. I read your blog, and loved it. I think you are very lucky to have been raised by so many wonderful parents. Gay or straight. It just doesn’t matter. You are so better prepared in the world to relate to the all the diversity so many just simply chose to ignore.

    Thank you for sharing you life. You are right. Your Dad is your Dad.

  62. Here in my country,gays are perceived second class. And it gets in to my nerves.Although I am not gay,I respect those who have a different perception of life.Its a matter of respect.I admire you writing this.and I hope people will be touched by you.

  63. Thanks for being brave and sharing yet another area of your life that many would have chosen to leave private. I appreciate your approach and candor. I’m glad I know you!

  64. Thanks for sharing this.
    My sister is gay, as are many of my closest friends. At my wedding, all my bridesmaids were lesbians.
    I’m also a practicing Christian, so quite often you come across people who aren’t so open to the idea. As you know.
    There have been quite a few moments where someone has thought that maybe it was safe to have a conversation with me because of my faith and are like “gay people shouldn’t get married” or “Gay people are all going to hell”. Sometimes i’ll nod and smile and hope they go away. other times i point out who i’m related to and allow the awkward silence.
    Looking forward to reading the rest of this series.

  65. Your dad is one very blessed guy to have someone like you love him. This is a precious and perception changing story from the heart, that touched mine. Thank you.

  66. wow.. you give me a new perspective. we have to try not to discriminate them (well, it does happen).
    thanks for sharing, i appreciate you bravery.

    tetap berjuang!

  67. This is an amazing post and i’m sure allot will get a new look on life from it, keep it up πŸ™‚

  68. so nice a story to get acquainted wid… the simplicity with which uv said abt a topic so complex.. hats off… as humans… we blv we noe so many d reality still is we noe nothing…. coming to d point.. it was a nice thing to read n i appreciate ur n ur dad’s worth… πŸ™‚

  69. Thanks for posting this. I’m a gay student in college, and it’s nice to be reminded that there are people in this world who accept homosexuality and have faith in God. Thank you for being the kind of person who gives me hope that tomorrow will be better :).

  70. Interesting Blog, I’m glad to hear your perspective. I am a Follower of Christ who happens to be gay. While I wanted Children very bad, I could not do that to a woman. I cannot tell you if we are born gay or not but I can tell you, it’s not a choice. If I had my way, I’d be married with Grandchildren now. Thanks for sharing and I’m glad to know you love your Dad for who he is and not hate him for being gay.

  71. […] Yesterday I discussed what it was like to be an evangelical Christ follower who is the child of a gay father. […]

  72. Jenny, I applaud your courage and the love you send through your story to uplift others. Very inspiring!

  73. Bless you, and your family.

    I have two gay nephews, and I am married to a gospel singer. I have heard ALL of the homophobic ‘jokes’, delivered to me with a knowing wink and the assumption that since I am a Christian I will OF COURSE a) think they are funny and b) tacitly agree with the apparently God-given right to belittle and demean people “we” all KNOW are fair game. I can’t begin to tell you how offensive this is to me– the assumptions even more than the jokes!

    I love my nephews. Not in spite of, or because of their sexual orientation– because they are my family and I know them. They are the face of homosexuality to me. I also have many gay friends hidden deep inside the gospel music closet, and I have looked in the face of one of those dear friends and heard him say in a choked voice, “The one thing I do know for sure is that I did NOT CHOOSE TO BE GAY.” So who am I (or any other human being on earth) to stand up in the face of their experience and say, “Um, yes you did!”

    Russ and I are raising two daughters. We are teaching them that to love and accept everyone exactly as they are is our job, given to us by God. To sort out human sexuality is God’s job. I am very comfortable with that.

    Your dad (and mom) raised a very loving daughter. You are all to be commended.

  74. Wow! What an amazing post! I applaud your courage to share this part of your story here, Jenny.

    Largely due to the religious environment I grew up in and the my complete lack of exposure to any homosexuals (that I knew about), I had some pretty defined opinions of “those gay people” while growing up. It wasn’t until one of my best friends came out to me 9 years ago that I was forced to look at the pride in my heart and reevaluate why I felt the way I felt and determine if I could continue to love my friend in spite of something that I viewed as sin… you know, the way God loves me.

    It was not easy at first and my initial response was not a good one. It was a bit of a complicated scenario and there were other things at play, but I wish my first response to my friend would have been one of love and not judgment. We have since worked through that and though we don’t talk often these days, I do love him and want God’s best for him and his life as much as I want it for all the other people in my life.
    God bless you and your journey, Jenny.

  75. Wow, what a beautiful blog! Thank you so much for sharing your story x

  76. What an incredible post–this touched me as a follower of Christ with friends that are gay. It broke my heart, when I read it is Christians that have said the meanest gay jokes–can totally see it. Thank you for a well written post full of grace, truth, and your heart.

  77. […] DayΒ 1, Day 2 […]

  78. Hi very good sharing. thanks a lot

  79. […] about what he has learned through his story. Because of Jason’s feedback this week – my series on my dad has been better, clearer, and less likely to be mis-interpreted. I have seen the tremendous power […]

  80. […] came expecting deep thoughts, I’m sorry to disappoint, but I’m deep-thoughted out after last week. Sooo, if you need a deep-thought-fix, I highly recommend my friend Tracee’s blog from […]

  81. I sincerely could be missing something, but I think that the overarching thoughts here are breaking people into two groups, and that is unfair to a third unmentioned group IMHO. Everyone is clear about (in my own paraphrase) judgmental, holier-than-thou hyper religious folks who hypocrytically look down on people of their choosing, who usually include gay people. Unquestionably, those people are wrong in their actions and attitudes, and do not at all mirror the Son of God who they say they worship.
    The second group that is included is the (once again, my paraphrase) love everyone, be kind to everyone, and don’t offend anyone group.
    The group that I think that no one seems to talk about (possibly because they don’t show themselves enough) is the group that truly believes that the Bible teaches that homosexuality is a sin, BUT also realizes that ALL have sinned, and that we all are sinners, and so are all of our parents. However, Jesus clearly taught us to love the sinner, and to never look down on any man (human). I happen to be in that group. I am reasonably sure that my father cheated on my mother numerous times (with women, but that doesn’t make it any more wrong or right in God’s eyes), but I still love my father and respect him immensely, although I will never defend his actions. I am a sinner too, and I have no right to look down my nose at anyone. So is my mother, my grandmother, my kids, all of my friends, and my pastor and the entire staff at my church and everyone who has ever lived, with one exception.
    I know that many will say that I just don’t get around enough, but I have only personally known 4 or 5 gay people in my life. By “known”, I mean had a more than “Hi, how are you” relationship, I had conversations and interacted and knew about them personally and they did the same for me. There is no question that each one of them is an incredibly nice person, and I like each and every one of them very much (one is a cousin of mine who I trade e-mails with often and usually migrate to first at the occasional family get-together). However, each one of them is fully aware (I am pretty sure) that I think that their lifestyle is sinful, but not one has a problem with me. Some of them think that I am crazy, which is fine with me, but none of them are shallow enough to think that if I disagree with their lifestyle, that means that I don’t like them (or, as the world would have everyone believe, if I think that they are sinning, I must hate them).
    I believe homosexuality is a sin. But I not only strive to love homosexuals because that is what Christ taught us to do, I strive to like them also, and so far, so good on that one. And by the way, I also strive to love and to like every kind of sinner, and there are many many people much more difficult to love than gays.
    Now Jenny, I am not sure what you believe, but I do agree with you that you should love and respect your parents unconditionally. But if you feel that I am wrong or judgmental because I believe that homosexuality is a sin, I must respectfully disagree with you.

    • Hi Kurt – I don’t think you are judgmental… I’ve worked hard to make this a site that is welcoming for all types of diverse people, backgrounds, beliefs and I really appreciate you coming forward and engaging in the discussion. So I apprecate and value your contributions… without discussion… things remain at the level of “issues” and that doesn’t solve anything. With discussion, we are reminded that we are talking about real people and a real, Living Christ that we serve… and in that discussion the abundance of Life in Christ ensues… so thanks for coming to the table.

      First – I am deeply sorry that you have dealt with the pain of seeing a parent cheat. I cannot imagine the pain that has to have put you through as a young man. The wound from adultery is devastating to families. In 2 weeks I have a friend doing a post on that subject. She will be posting on May 10th. Will you come back and read it? My heart for you is that somewhere in her discussion… you may find something that encourages and ministers to you. I don’t know where you are with all of it, but I have found that in community in Christ there is a power for healing, redemption, and encouragement that can come from nowhere else. So Kurt, please come back πŸ™‚

      Second, the story I have posted on the blog is about 1/100th of what my dad and I have been thru in my 39 years. I am an evangelical Christian… so trust me… dad and I have been there with difficult discussions, done that, and been around the barrel several times. He has had to make some choices, and so have I. We drive each other crazy… regularly. A lot of what God has called me to do w/my dad is rebuild the bridge that his early Catholic upbringing shattered…. there is much more to that… but that’s dad’s and my story πŸ™‚ Suffice to say… dad and I have had many of the hard conversations.

      Take a look at my Friday Favorite post from Blogger JCWert… you will be able to deduce from the fact that I chose Jason’s post for a reason and that reason is to provide balance πŸ™‚ Hope that clarifies a little… come back… I value your comments πŸ™‚


      • Dear Jenny!
        Some how i find myself reading your story and i really feel compelled to writte this to you. One thing is that our father in heaven is full of compassion for human kind and he loved each one of us so much that he gave is only son Jesus. Jesus pay the same price for each one of us there is no favorite. HE SAYS TO US COME AS YOU ARE and let me change you. You can be a thief, a murderer, an homosexual YOU NAME IT! Jesus pay the price for each one of us not to stay the way we are but to be change and transformed in his image.
        Why are we the way we are before meeting Christ. Well let stay with the simplicity of the gospel and look at the beginning.
        God placed man in a perfect environment and subjected him to a simple test of obedience. (Genesis 2:15-17), note in verse 17 God said to man, “In the day that you disobey me and eat of the forbidden fruit thou shall surely die”. We know that God was not speaking of physical death, because man lived for many years before he began to die physically. God was speaking of “spiritual death” or man died spiritually the day he disobeyed God. What is spiritual death? Spiritual death means to be separated from God. When man sinned there in the garden, the nature of God left man’s spirit (this nature is eternal life) and the nature of Satan was imparted to man (this nature is spiritual death). Adam through his transgression sold the human race into demonic slavery. Satan became man’s lord and man’s master. Man became his slave. Everyone of us is a descendent of Adam. So we were all born with the “adamic nature”, which in essence is the nature of the devil. It is important that we understand this. The beloved psalmist, David, understood this as he cried out in (Psalm 51:5), “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity and in sin my mother conceived me”. So it is with all of us. At one time Satan was our spiritual father, but thanks be unto God, if we have made Jesus Christ our Lord, that is not the way it is now.
        God has made a provision for us so we can be forgiven, washed, cleaned, set free, delivered and healed through Christ Jesus, so we can be the women or man that he call us to be. He can restore and give us back our identity. God doesn’t make mistake when he created us, the devil is the one that pervert everyting that is good and still our identity. I pray this will bring some answers to you and people that are really looking for thruth! God bless everyone!

  82. First of all, I can’t imagine how hard it was to write all that. One of my best friends dad is a homosexual, and over the years I have seen him go through many struggles. So I applaud you for writing so openly about how you deal with it all.

    But as a sister in Christ, I wanted to share some things with you. According to the Bible, homosexuality is clearly a sin and abhorrent to God. It is not a grey area, it is not an issue, it is not an alternative lifestyle. It is 100% sin. The Bible is clear in numerous passages and verses. All of us have sinned, and all who are living continue to sin. One solitary sin makes us not good enough, therefore whether it is the sin of homosexuality, or the sin of a so-called β€œlittle-white-lie”, we are all in the same boat without Christ. There is no hierarchy that makes the sin of homosexuality alone worse than the sin of lying or wrongful thoughts, etc., but it is still a sin.

    As believers we are to love all, and since all have sinned, we are to love all sinners. But to call a sinner a sinner, and/or to call one’s sin sin, is not the opposite of love. According to the Bible, it is part of the essence of love. We have to make sure that what we do and say is edifying, in love, which is where many believers fall extremely short. It is wrong to cover up sin, or to sugar coat it, or make it seem less than it is, even if it is the sin of a parent. We are commanded to love and respect our parents unconditionally. However, we are not to defend our parents if they are in sin, or condone our parents’ wrongdoing. And, repeating a previous point, we all have sinful parents, so we are all in the same boat. Judgmental people are wrong. However, you can make a judgment on someone without being a judgmental person. The only way that it is not wrong to judge, is if it is done lovingly, and is done to edify and further the Lord’s Will. I know this is difficult for many christians.

  83. Jenny, your story made me think of Zacchaues the tax collector, in Luke 19. A sinful man (like all of us), Zacchaues was probably the most judged, despised man in town. I’m sure he was the butt of many a cruel joke. But when Jesus came through town, if was Zacchaues that Jesus chose to spend time with, and in fact Jesus spent time in his home. The people were astonished that Jesus would hang out with such a “sinner”! (funny how people were just as judging of one another back then!) The beauty of this story is that Jesus didn’t just judge this man and move on, nor did he ignore Zacchaues’ sin. He showed love and mercy, and when Zacchaues repented, Jesus forgave him and granted him salvation. That’s how we are to treat one another as well. Jenny, Christ wants you to love and honor your father always. But he doesn’t want you to ignore his sin. The bible is very clear that homosexuality is a sin of the body. As Christ shows us in the story of Zacchaues, it is possible (as well as our duty as followers of Christ) to show love and compassion to one another while still holding each other accountable to God’s word.

  84. My favorite line? “My dad is my dad”. I loved this post!!!

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