Dear Christians: Practical Ways to be an Ally in 2017 America

Alright, peoples. The board is set; the pieces are moving. If you’re a person of good will, and I know most of you are, you need to get real serious about your commitment to your own values. It’s time to cash them in for some hard currency. Christ said: “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me,” and:

 “Come, you that are blessed… for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” (Matthew 25:40, 34-36)

 This isn’t a matter of political ideology. It’s a matter of basic common humanity. I know I risk sounding alarmist — I’m not about to claim that the world is on the brink of collapse — only that this is not the best time to be a minority in the United States of America, and in many other parts of the world.

 Below are some basic things Christians can do to help minorities feel safe:

  1.  Pray for change – but don’t stop there.
  2. Have real messy human relationships with minority friends.
  3. If you have a spare bedroom, be willing to put it to use.
  4. If you can, signal to minority groups that you’re a safe resource.
  5. Use your professional skills to help those in need.
  6. Educate yourself.
  7. Volunteer.
  8. Use language respectfully, because it sets the tone for how a person will be treated.
  9. Stand up to bullies, even if it inconveniences you (even if they’re your family).
  10. Teach your children to stand up to bullies and defend others.
  11. Make your churches welcome to any person who needs a warm environment – so make your churches warm.
  12. Be the warm body that will stand or sit beside a friend. As in: sit yourself physically down next to a minority friend (in the pew – yes, in church) and help them deflect all those nasty stares they’re accustomed to.
  13. Donate to initiatives that actively help minority groups. If not shelters and charities, then to law centers. We need good lawyers more than anyone else.
  14. Publicly support us. Stop worrying about your social clout.
  15. Don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. This means, don’t expect to be given a ribbon for basic human decency. Thank you, really, but this isn’t about you. It’s just not.
  16. In summary, practice what you preach.

Interview with Dan Hitchens about transsexuality and Catholicism

Last month I was blessed to be interviewed by an excellent journalist, Dan Hitchens, about the theological and pastoral landscape of transsexuality in the Catholic Church. I was interviewed alongside two other dear Catholic trans women: my friend Aoife Assumpta Hart, and a fellow activist Jane Fae.

An article based on the interview was featured in the Catholic Herald. You can read the entire article here: What’s the truth about transsexuality? by Dan Hitchens.

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British Bishops on Transsexuality


On the subject of gender transition, The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales seems encouragingly positive. A year ago they released a draft of guidelines instructing Catholics on how far to comply with England’s Equality Act 2010, which will provide increased civil protection for a number of minority groups, including transsexuals. Their document says that:

Transsexual people face many difficulties before, during and after transitioning to another gender. As such it is recommended to seek guidance on how to make the transitional process as easy as possible. This could include training for co-workers, as well as reference to medical and social advice.

The implication of this quote seems to be that Catholics in Britain are expected to fully abide by the law’s prohibition of anti-trans discrimination, and more significantly to cooperate or at least be supportive of a transgender person in the process of transitioning.

Read the full text here.