Symphony for a Friend: A Literary Composition in Four Parts

Cathedral Church of Saint Luke interior, photo by the author.

Within the last two months as many of my closest friends have died, Joel Strack and Ben Lane. The former’s passing came with the gift of a month of hospice care which afforded his friends the opportunity to reminisce about days long gone, when we had more hair, less excess weight, and our futures seemed boundless. It also granted his family time to see firsthand their beloved’s impact on Central Florida. With the latter’s passing, we were not so fortunate.


The LGBT Seat at Christ’s Table

Photo by John Cafazza on Unsplash

This essay is written in response to a thread about the importance of LGBT Christians speaking out and being visible and active congregantsdespite having been wounded by organized religion. There’s a tendency to throw Jesus out with the holy water, but I’d like to offer another option. What follows is a recounting of my firsthand experience dealing with those who would deny my invitation and rightful seat at the table. Peace be with you.

As a forty-eight-inch tall, gay, black man, I encounter plenty of people who think and demonstrate through their actions, “You don’t belong because — ” With that said, my need for a self-concept that is not tethered to a human perspective is integral for my well-being.


Losing, Reclaiming, and Reconciling My Religion with My Sexuality

I was brought up in a Christian home. All four of my grandparents — God rest their souls, my father (had) and my mother still has a palpable faith in God and a relationship with Christ. They had to. They were Black people living in the south. Their faith is my heritage. I accepted Christ as my savior when I was sixteen. Nothing made me happier knowing that one day I’d get to meet Jesus face to face.


God Is Real (Despite the Awfulness of Humanity)

Image by Eidy Bambang Sunyaro, at

Things are tough. All over. A lot of people are hurting physically, emotionally, financially, and spiritually. All any of us need do is turn on the TV, log into social media, or if you’re really daring, step outside your front door and there it is: the awfulness of humanity. With this pervasive level of devastation, a friend of mine asked, as I’m sure many more of you have —

“If God is real, then why do things like [insert tragedy] happen?”


Adrift at Sea on an Ocean of Grief

Photo credit: Taylan Soyturk Photographe via / CC BY-NC-ND Details
The past few weeks have been a real shit storm of emotions for lot of people. Several folks I know are dealing with the death of a loved one. In the past two months alone, several friends’ parents have died. April 15 marked the twenty-third anniversary of my father’s death (which reopens a grievous wound every year). Two weeks ago, a producer colleague died. I’ve read that several of you here have lost parents, close friends, or are beginning to examine your life in the light of the deaths of loved ones given the gift of perspective that comes with time. Even yesterday, an actor colleague who was ten years junior died. And a few hours ago, I read that a beloved Medium writer lost his mother.

A Word About Saint Patrick

Image by Quentin Rey,

Each year the Episcopal Church celebrates the Feast Day of Saint Patrick, fifth-century bishop and missionary of Ireland, on March 17, the day of his death in 461.

Holy Women, Holy Men (Church Publishing, 2010) relates that Patrick was born on the northwest coast of Britain in about 390. His grandfather had been a Christian priest, and his father was a deacon in the early Christian church. When Patrick was a teenager, he was


Love One Another: It’s Just That Simple

Candlelight vigil in downtown Orlando. (Photo: Dr. Phiillips Center for the Performing Arts)

It seems that some churches have had a difficult time figuring out how to respond to the Pulse massacre. The answer is simple, and to quote Jesus, “love one another.” There it is. Three words. It doesn’t get any simpler than that. I’m no Biblical scholar, but this one seems to be … well … a no-brainer.

On the night before his crucifixion, Jesus says “love one another” to his Disciples not once, but twice. If memory serves me correctly, Jesus and the Disciples are in the upper room


How I Talk to Christian People About LGBT Issues

This post was in response to this letter penned to me on Medium in response to my article How I Talk to White People About Racism.

So “how do I talk to Christian people about LGBT issues?” Without sounding cavalier or insensitive, I like to think there no LGBT issues. There are only human issues.

But if we have to break the challenges that LGBT people face out into a separate category, I think talking about them with Christian people is pretty much like talking about any other hot topic with anyone else