My wife, Heather, and I were providing a special educational outreach on Trans Topics at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington DC. It was for Rev. Dr. Youtha Hardman-Cromwell’s class, “Sexual Issues in Parish Ministry”. We had led many similar sessions for her over the years, and we always looked forward to speaking to the seminary students while they were still in progress. My favorite part is the Question & Answer section where we have an open dialogue and active exchanges. One of the students raised her hand, and when I called on her, she began, “I know God doesn’t make mistakes…”
I felt a sudden flush. I had heard those words so many times before in my life, and they never ended in a good place. They usually preceded a self righteous argument, or stood just fine all on their own as a self-assured erasure of Trans existence by one who knows all the ways of God. I braced for what was to come next.
“I know God doesn’t make mistakes,” she began, “So why do you think God made Transgender people?”
I did not see that one coming. In all my years I’d never been asked that. And yet, the answer came quickly and easily, without hesitation, and from a place far beyond myself. I listened to the answer come forth with my own voice for the very first time: “To provide a clearer image of Divinity, a clearer image of God.”
What a gift! It was as if that answer was a balm for all those occasions when I had heard those words used to wound me, used to erase my very existence. Yes, we exist. We are. All of creation is the first expression of the God Who Is, and whether we understand it or not (and most of it not) all of the Universe belongs, brought into being as an expression of God.
Transgender, Gender Non-binary, and Gender Expansive individuals exist, and exist as creations of God, expressions of the God Who Is – who is totally Trans by the way….
For goodness sake, my God is the God of black holes and quasars, the God of swirling galaxies and a billion stars, the God of molecules, atoms, and quarks. The breath of my God extends beyond the edge of the Hubble telescope’s vision, and fills in the spaces in between protons and electrons. The breadth of my God reaches from the infinite to the minute, and one is not more important or precious than the other. All together they form the harmony and the balance of the Universe.
So yes, Transgender, Gender Non-binary, and Gender Expansive individuals exist, and exist as creations of God, expressions of the God Who Is – who is totally Trans by the way – neither male nor female, similar to both, but unlike either (Genesis 1:26, 27). Yes, we are; and God Is.
ABOUT THIS MCC AUTHOR: Rev. Emma Chattin joined MCC in 1997, and was a part of the 6 person Laity Task Force in 2000 and 2001 which presented key recommendations regarding the Commission on Laity to the General Council. She was ordained in 2004, worked on a church plant in Harrisonburg, VA, provided supply preaching, Congregational Care Training, and served the denomination in various capacities moving forward, including educational video presentations and service on several Clergy interview teams. She is currently serving as Pastor of MCC of Northern Virginia, “A community for all people, no exceptions, no kidding”, and is a member of the MCC Eastern Network Leadership Team. Read More