James Brinton (left) with partner Chip
|Recent LGBT LDS Stories|
by James Brinton, of the Affirmation DC Chapter
Let me go back one year to 2011, my first Affirmation Thanksgiving in Washington D.C. Last year, my experience was very special for me: I had just come out of the closet to my extended family and circle of friends and was cautiously getting used to the feelings and experience of being more open around others. I hurriedly showed up with side dish in hand and a little prayer in my heart that I could connect more with this wonderful community of new people. That night, I met new friends who would change my life, and for the first time, felt a glimmer of hope that I could identify as both a member of the LGBT community and a Mormon.
Now, a full year has brought many blessings and advancements in life. The 2012 Thanksgiving dinner was even bigger and better! 70+ people in all: LGBT friends of many beliefs, straight allies, ward members, partners, spouses, children, and even an affirming bishop. Everyone gathered around tables in gratitude and with open hearts to all people. Good food was eaten and many authentic stories were exchanged. Following the dinner, we gathered downstairs and each shared what we were most grateful for in 2012. I sensed an overwhelming theme—gratitude for love. Whether it is from family, members of the Affirmation community, or from God, humans seek to love and be loved. It was a perfect way to prepare for the blessings and progress 2013 will bring to us individually and as an organization.