In the latest installment of the publisher’s enterprising Queer Action/Queer Ideas series, queer Episcopal priest and political strategist Edman brings a fresh approach to the ongoing conundrum between the LGBTQ community and Christianity.
With clarity and a confident narrative tone, the author argues that the Christian religion is inherently queer in and of itself, just as “priestliness” is an integral part of who she is. In her thought-provoking book, she first explores the ideology behind the queer population’s rejection of morally complex binaries and how the spiritual path of Christianity is positively a queer one. With great reverence, Edman incorporates personal experiences and examples into her examination of the similarities that both Christianity and queer constructs share in terms of identity, sensorial touch, controversy, and more. The author then further recognizes the benefits of the queer experience both historically and contemporarily in terms of healthy pride and public awareness (coming out) and how it can fortify and reinvigorate the Christian faith. She urges Christians to “observe queer virtue and learn from it” and to utilize it as a powerful model of unity and equality rather than to engage in the religious deprecation of queer people. Sadly, for many, Christianity has become the “face of intolerance.” In order to enact positive change regarding its perception, Edman believes a radical, queering perspective could stimulate and renew interest. In the author’s estimation, to challenge religious tradition by expanding its boundaries can only broaden its reach, deepen its core message, and beautify its prism of devotion. Edman’s sense of enthusiasm and clarity around her persuasive message of spiritual solidarity are consistently crisp and wondrous. Throughout her appeal for attitudinal evolution, she hopes her exchange of ideas “stirs up a little burst of excitement” and spurs some warm, rapturous conversation on the nature of queerness in Christianity.
An intellectual and provocative perspective challenging Christians and others to reconsider the confines of spiritual interconnection, harmony, and progressive inclusion in modern religion.