« Federal Marriage Amendment fails... | Main | Why I'm proud to be a Golden Bear »

July 14, 2004


David Morrison

Actually, I put comments around the term "Gay Christian" to signify my disagreement with the term. Nothing more.

Here is a letter I wrote to some former friends and associates long ago about why I could no longer work on their Gay Christian journal, an effort we had called Malchus. It explains better than I can in comment box about why I can no longer self-define in that way:

It is with a mixture of emotions; sorrow and relief, uncertainty and confidence, that I contribute this last article to an issue of Malchus. On September first of this year I resigned my responsibility as Malchus' Assistant Editor as well as any further role as a contributing author. The resignation will take effect as soon as Chris can come up with someone to handle the Assistant Editor's job.

Most of our readers, I imagine, must already have inklings as to how and why Malchus and I have had to go our separate ways. A careful reader of what has been our steadily improving effort cannot have helped but notice that my articles have become increasingly out of step with those of other contributors on some pretty profound areas. This, to a certain extent, is to be expected and even encouraged, however some topics, such as sexual identity and obedience, rest very close to the heart of what Malchus is all about and thus call for a degree of at least minimal agreement. While Chris founded Malchus with a clear orientation away from demanding ideological purity - and has faithfully maintained that position -- there is a difference between playing the far outfield and taking a position that is outside the ballpark entirely. No matter how loosely Malchus might have defined itself in order to accommodate my rising orthodox sentiments, I do not expect that it could continue to do so forever without doing violence to Chris's vision for the publication.

At their deepest, my disagreements with Malchus run right to the heart of what I believe it means to be a Christian in the latter part of the twentieth century. Not, please note, what it means to be a homosexually oriented Christian, or a white Christian, or a Male Christian, but a Christian. Over hours and months of reflection and prayer I have come to understand my relationship with Christ and His Church to be far more about what He would have me do than what I would have me do. This, I have observed, runs sharply counter to the surrounding philosophy - the ballpark if you will - in which Malchus operates. Unlike many others who write for Malchus I find my battle, as a Christian, to be more one of bending my own selfish will to the Moral Law than of trying to bend, twist, reshape, or recast that Moral Law to endorse my will. I have come, for better or worse, to feel Malchus endorses a course of life that is willfully sinful; in as far as it supports a demand among some that God change to meet their actions and desires rather than change those actions and seek purification of those desires out of love of God.

It has been my observation that one cannot embark upon a path of sexual misconduct and sin without finding the other aspects of one's being, body, soul and spirit, eventually to be also corrupted. While homosexually active I accepted with only minimum regard, assumptions regarding scripture, the nature of sacrifice and the nature of what Christ demanded from me. These assumptions do not bear up under closer scrutiny and intellectual honesty demands I abandon them in favor of those closer to the Truth. This is why I can no longer assent, willingly, to have my name upon a publication which is founded upon premises which I have to regard, at best, as sin-induced error or, at worst, as a sinister attack upon souls.

Finally, I want to make it clear that I have nothing but fond, if regretful, feelings about Chris and everyone I have met in connection with Malchus. Chris, in particular, has managed contributors' conflicting creeds and cultural divisions with an aplomb that ought to merit him a post in the Diplomatic Corps. The Bosnian conflict, indeed, likely merits as delicate a touch. I am truly sorry that we could not agree more. Maybe, some day, we shall.


A very graceful letter, David; thank you for the clarification. The reason I keep reading your blog is for the kind of winsome thoughtfulness you bring to your work -- even when we disagree, I honor that.


Very nicely said, Hugo.


David -

I, too, appreciate the integrity of your position. The statement that satnds out is your comitment to follow the will of Christ instead of your own selfish will. Indeed, that is the heart of the Christian experience/struggle.

I understand that for you to self-identify as a gay Christian is problematic, even a lie. Intellectual honesty and faithfulness takes me (and others) to a different place. I'm not suggesting some sort of supreme moral relativity along the lines of "what's right for you is ok and what's right for me is ok." One of us is most likely wrong in our understanding (although we would obviously disagree about which of us that is ;)).

So back to the original point, I can respect your decision not to refer to yourself as a gay Christian and even your belief that there is a a universality to your conclusion. Understand, though, that I currently believe that others can identify as gay Christians (or, more accurately, Christians who are gay) without crossing their fingers. It tends to be a show-stopper to suggest that such folks are deluded from the beginning by denying their identification as Christian.

Peace to you.

- Robert

Neil Uchitel

There's the other side of the coin to that as well. A friend of my father's once said "It's not what you call us, but what we answer to that matters."

David, I agree with your premise wholeheartedly. I don't believe one should place an adjective in front of "Christian" no matter what it is, because doing so enslaves us again into what Paul said freedom in Christ is supposed to bring: "There is no bond or free, Jew or Gentle..." Cheers, Neil


First, I can understand the need to be civil. In regards to using the terms "pro-choice" to refer to self-described "pro-choicers," I really disagree. I can understand not calling them "pro-abort" as that only angers them. I like to use the term "those who favor legalized abortion." Is it a mouthful? Sure. But I feel it's a more accurate description. I think that this gives in to the MISuse of the word "choice." By using the phrase "pro-choice," it is ceding the word "choice" to them. It is allowing them to have a monopoly on that word. It is also saying that pro-lifers are the opposite of "pro-choice." And that is simply totally untrue. Since everyone capable of making decisions makes CHOICES (mostly UNrelated to abortion) every single day, having an abortion DENIES choice to the baby who is brutally killed. That baby never gets a single chance at any choice whatsoever in life. Furthermore, some abortions are done because of pressure from boyfriends/husbands/parents/employers. The woman really does not have complete choice in those situations. Frankly, I think that the ONLY way to truly be "pro-choice" is if one is pro-life. We are for allowing an innocent baby to have a chance to make a choice in his/her life. (In fact, we are for allowing the baby to actually live.) Being in favor of abortion is TRULY anti-choice as it denies a baby any chance to make a single choice.

The comments to this entry are closed.

My Photo

Regular reads

Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 01/2004