A gorgeous prayer has been published from Desmond Tutu in “Essence” magazine. Please go there and read the whole thing because it was hard to choose which excerpts to highlight and there is something very important Tutu writes about concerning the recognition of one’s mortality. Once we accept we are, indeed, not immortal do we act more cautiously or do we become bolder? These is a strong prayer from a true “fierce advocate.”
Today I pray for people in Africa and throughout the world who long for freedom because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. It grieves me to be retiring at this crucial moment in history, so I write to you in this open letter, to invite you to pick up the work that remains to be done. More than 70 countries still imprison or execute gay and transgender people, and bullying and murders are all too common. This must change.
Each of you is called to respond to God’s urgency for love and life. So whether you are in South Africa, the United States or anywhere else, humanity needs to accept its own diversity as a gift from our Creator. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people are part of our family of God.
Boldly, I urge all faith leaders and politicians to stop persecuting people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. Every day people live in fear because of who they love. We are talking about our family members, our flesh and blood, our humanity. LGBT people are in our villages, towns, cities, countries — and our whole world.
Faith leaders are you listening? I’m impressed with Desmond Tutu, of course, for writing the prayer but grateful to “Essence” for providing the Archbishop a forum to address how hate of our LGBT community is incompatible with Christianity. I accepted my mortality in my early twenties while watching some of my friends die of AIDS back in the late 1980′s. We don’t have the luxury to wait for our supposed leaders to overcome their “fierce timidity,” nor do we have forever down here to make a positive contribution to LGBT civil rights, so let’s follow Archbishop Tutu’s example, and let us choose boldness!