How to Be a Straight Ally at Work

A 2014 study by the Human Rights Campaign found that 53 percent of LGBT individuals remain closeted at work. According to Audrey Gallien, Director of Marketing for Catalyst, a workplace inclusion advocacy organization, even when businesses attempt to provide an inclusive environment, individuals “still must face the inter-personal risk of ‘bringing their full self’ to work”—in other words, they risk their relationship with their manager, team members, or clients changing for the worse. Accordin

Figure Modeling

The moment I disrobe and step up naked on a platform where anywhere from two to a dozen pairs of eyes are staring at me has never bothered me. I don’t feel ashamed or embarrassed. Before I started figure modeling, I’d enjoyed other public nudity experiences which led me to believe I’d be a good candidate for the gig. There were other reasons I started modeling. As a broke graduate student, it is a way of supporting the arts without the ability to buy much. It’s also physically challenging, and

I desperately wanted to be a stepmom

The times when I most yearned for the title of stepmom were when it mattered the least: speaking to coworkers or other women — usually much older than me — about their teenage daughters. When one mom lamented her daughter's growing reclusiveness, I felt a smug sense of pride about the chatty, unguarded girl in my life. Another showed me her daughter's prom pictures, and I reciprocated by bringing up images of Miranda in her golden gown on Facebook. But when I talked about Miranda, I'd have to sa

After Bomb Threats Against Jewish Centers, Chicago Faith Groups Show Up for Neighbors

Jarell Wilson moved to Chicago in 2016. A recent seminary graduate, Wilson relocated to serve with a local congregation and pursue ordination in the United Methodist Church. But he soon discovered he missed reading Scripture in Hebrew. When Rabbi Craig Marantz, Wilson's friend and head rabbi at Emanuel Congregation in Edgewater, invited Wilson to a reading group, Wilson jumped at the chance. He began coming to the synagogue to read the Torah, and soon, Marantz and Wilson were part of each other'

Living in the gray

Hospice chaplain Kerry Egan asks, “What could hope possibly look like to someone who is dying?” She then answers, “It can mean anything. It could look like everything.” In Egan’s narrative, hope takes many shapes: stories that matter enough to be retold after the storyteller’s death, lives that have meaning and purpose even in suffering, and redemption from shame and regrets. Amid anecdotes and insights from 15 years of ministry with the dying, Egan recounts multiple scenarios in which people a

Can Christian LGBTQ Communities Embrace Intersectionality?

“A bunch of moms are wearing buttons saying ‘Free Mom Hugs,’” I texted, to my own mother. I was messaging her from the annual Gay Christian Network Conference, which took place early January in Pittsburgh. Later, I told her about the conference attendees I met who had been kicked out of their homes as kids when they came out (or were outed) as gay or transgender. They’d ended up homeless or were sent to conversion camps.
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