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The Minority Report | Ashley Kim

Photo Credit: Bobby Jones

I recently attended a “Queer Faith Panel” hosted by CU Denver’s Women and Gender Center. The panel featured students and staff from the Auraria campus who identify with a queer identity and a faith identity—two things that are often autonomous of each other.

Some students shared how difficult it has been to identify with both identities, especially when so many people in their lives have ostracized them for being who they are—people who claim to be devoutly religious and believe that to be the equivalent of being a good person and living a good life.

While I don’t identify with a queer identity, I do identify with a faith identity. I can confidently say that I am constantly irritated by the idea that you can’t be religious if you identify with something that is perceived as a non-religious practice.

I grew up Christian, and I believe that living by Christian values is admirable and morally good. However, I disagree with the notion that to identify with a religion, to make it into heaven or its equivalent, to be considered a good person at all, you must perfectly adhere to certain standards of a religion.

To me, it sounds like hating someone for being who God made them to be is contradictory of Christianity completely.

At the core of Christianity is a desire to be Christ-like. In church, I learned God’s vast, unchanging, and unconditional love for everyone. Everyone.

I learned that being Christian means to extend the love that Christ so graciously gave to me to the people around me. So when I hear about my peers being ostracized after coming out to their loved ones, I am instantly frustrated. Christianity is not an exclusive club.

The Women and Gender Center holds monthly events that work to create a positive and productive dialogue around certain identities.

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