Pride. And prejudice.

2016 August 8
by mackan

I am, at the time of this writing, not entirely clear how to really start this conversation. So I will just start writing and tell you what happened and let you build your own conclusion or join in the conversation. I have waited for a day to start writing, but I don’t  really have a good beginning of the text, anyway. So I’ll just write.

So this last weekend Malmö Pride started.

I have not really taken part of the festivals before. Maybe I have gone to one or two workshops or seminars, but not beyond that. Which is, to be frank, kind of odd really. Because I have, for all my lifa, had all the reasons to parttake as an LGBT+ ally. In retrospect, it seems I just never really got around to it.

For full disclosure; I have always had openly gay people in my family and growing up, it was no more a mystery to me that some people fell in love with people of the same sex, than that others fell in love with people of the opposite. Love is the natural here. Love is the norm. So when people around me talk about “gay love”, “gay sex” or “gay marriage”, I kind of always become sort of uncomfortable. Because the way I grew up, I regard this as Love, Sex and Marriage, respectively.

The fact that I have not been to a pride-festival before makes me somewhat sad and inexplicably feel guilt. It feels as if I should have.

Anyway – this year I finally went. I have several people in my family whom I wanted to support and it just felt natural. And I am happy to have gone. (And to keep going to some smaller events, throughout this week). I feel that it somehow is my duty to show my solidarity and my pride to even be in this amazing family.

So.

Then, last Sunday, I was going to preach at my Salvation Army corps. So I went in uniform, as one usually does. And on the bus someone sat down next to me and begun a conversation.

This is in itself nothing unusual. It happens a lot. But this time the mood of the conversation was different than usual. The person decided to sit down with me and start condemning the Pride festival, the “LGBT movement” and “homosexual life style”, right there, on the bus. I made a few comments to the effect that I strongly disagreed and that I liked the whole deal with the festival. To which my co-traveller answered;

But you are in the Salvation Army, for God’s sake!

You are supposed to be against gays.

And the s/he left.

And now I am left with a terrible, terrible realisation that the movement I am a part of, the Salvation Army, has become a symbol of opposition against LGBT people.

When people see the uniform, and recognize it, it does not anymore testify to a faith of a loving God, of good news to all mankind, of Soup, Soap and Salvation. But it testifies of exclusion, opposition and in worst case hate. And it makes me very, vary sad. Right now, I can’t really deal with what I am feeling. People who see me in uniform might automatically think that I am “against homosexuality”, instead of someone to trust. It feels, genuinely, as the movement has spoiled it’s testimony and it scares me and makes me sad.

I am not sure how to move forward in this.

3 Responses leave one →
  1. 2016 August 8

    Mycket tråkigt men jag är inte förvånad. Våra nya kommendörer borde säga något klokt i svensk media om detta. Jag tycker att du ska översätta detta till svenska och publicera det i facebookgruppen Blod och Eld. God bless U brother!

    Cay Lennart Larsson

  2. 2016 August 8
    Kn Värn permalink

    Föga överraskande – frälsningsarméns inställning kan ju emellertid inte komma som en nyhet för dig?

    Du har ju själv – på den här bloggen – konstaterat att frälsningsarméns syn på tex äktenskap och förhållanden gjort att du avsade dig din vigselrätt som frälsningsofficer?!

    Men jag tror att det är en nyttig erfarenhet – för just de här egenskaperna är vad många människor (rättvist) förknippar med frälsningsarmén och dess uniform blir en symbol för den inställningen.

  3. 2016 August 20

    Jag vet vart du står och jag har sagt förut att jag har all respekt för dig och ingen för frälsningsarmén när det kommer till den här frågan. Frälsningsarmén har hbtq-fientliga tolkningar av er heliga bok och när du har på dig uniformen så representerar du tyvärr inte bara dig själv utan även frälsningsarmén.

    Jag har aldrig sett exempel på att du har vad jag skulle kalla dåliga värderingar. Jag kan tyvärr inte säga detsamma om frälsningsarmén. Så, för att vara väldigt rakt på sak: Jag tycker du är för god för frälsis.

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