New Resource Helps Faith Communities Welcome and Affirm Bisexual Members
In recent years, the LGBTQ movement has achieved an increased acceptance of gays and lesbians and made great progress in securing legal equality for same-sex couples. In communities of faith, too, more and more clergy and congregations have learned to welcome and affirm lesbian and gay members, and many faith traditions now endorse same-sex marriage. But too often, progressive faith leaders who have been on the front lines advocating for LGBTQ liberation have been silent about bisexuality.
Clergy and faith communities have long been on their own to understand and welcome bisexual people. Today our partners at the Religious Institute released a new resource for congregations entitled “Bisexuality: Making the Invisible Visible in Faith Communities.” Co-authored by Marie Alford-Harkey and the Rev. Debra W. Haffner, this guidebook aims to give faith leaders tools to break the silence on bisexuality and fully welcome bisexual people into their congregations.
The guidebook, which is written for a multifaith audience, is in three sections. Part One, “Bisexuality Basics,” includes a definition of terms, research, and myths and facts about bisexuality. Part Two, “Sacred Texts and Religious Traditions,” offers scriptural and theological resources from a variety of faith traditions. Part Three, “Creating a Bisexually Healthy Congregation,” provides tools and strategies to help faith communities become more welcoming and affirming of bisexual people.
The Religious Institute’s bisexuality guidebook complements several resources for clergy and faith communities developed by the Task Force’s Institute for Welcoming Resources, including the Building an Inclusive Church Toolkit, transACTION: A Transgender Curriculum for Churches and Religious Institutions, and A La Familia, a bilingual resources for Latin@ communities.
“Bisexuality: Making the Invisible Visible in Faith Communities” is available here.
by Javen Swanson, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Interim Faith Work Director