December 2011

    IN THIS ISSUE
    New! Missioner Stalnaker to PA German community
    New! Two additional Advisory Board members
    In Memory of Alice Kitchen
    Make a donation in appreciation of the Exec Dir
    Freedom of Religion and the Human Rights of LGBT people
    2011 Latinas/os Report
    2011 Europe Report
    2011 Latin America Report
    2011 Thailand Report
    Kimer Trip Report to Kenya & Rwanda
    Parelli/Ortiz Trip Report to India, Singapore & Nepal
    Allens, Atkins retire from board of directors

  • Merry Christmas Muslim Style:  Our 2011 Christmas Letter - from Steve & Jose
  • Other 2011 stories/writings by Steve and Jose for your enjoyment during the holidays:
  • A "husband and husband act" at the Kannur (Kerala, India) railroad station
  • The Roman Catholic sister of Kottayam (Kerala, India) who openly helped
    distribute sexual minority literature
  • Our last hours in Kottayam (Kerala, India): a police officer intimidates us and
    our stopover in Emakulum
  • We are the unseen outcasts within the church (Jose's conversation with a
    Christian Indian while in flight from JFK to Dubai)
  • How a news release led to a significant meeting with a conservative religious
    leader in Kerala, India
  • The Singapore question: Why are evangelicals stuck at rejecting gays
  • Ostracism in Nepal - The long arm of evangelical spiritual persecution reaches
    Kathmandu
  • Jose Ortiz comments on Other Sheep's 2011 visit to Nepal
  • I was gay and closeted in Martinique in 1970; now, in 2011 on a Caribbean
    cruise, I'm openly gay in St. Lucia and I'm meeting "my counterpart"
  • Queering Galatians 4:21 - 5:1. An adaptation of Paul's letter verse by verse:
    on John Cotton vs. Roger Williams

October 2011

  • "Biblia y homosexualidad. ¿Se equivocaron los traductores?", por Renato Lings
  • 40 Myths in the Seven "Clobber" Texts Unmasked with Exegetical Studies
  • Sexual Minorities in the Bible: the Positive Texts in the New Testament

    Why Uganda's Anti-Gay Legislation Is the World's Business: View
    By the Editors of Bloomberg, Oct 27, 2011 7:00 PM ET


  • Galatians Chapter 4

    21 Tell me, you in America who desire to legislate religion - to write the precepts of your
    personal faith into our civil laws - do you not hear the story of your Puritan forbearers?

    22 For history tells us Boston had two sons, the one, John Cotton, tied to the old European
    mindset of a church-state paradigm, and the other, Roger Williams, born of the spirit of
    liberty, in which the church is free from the dictates of the state and the state of the dictates
    of the church.

    23 Now, the former was born out of the . . .  


September 2011

    September 26, 2011 edition of India Today magazine reports: Attempts for dialogue on homosexuality
    have begun for the first time inside the conservative churches of Kerala, set in motion by Steve Parelli and
    Jose Ortiz from the US

    Sheena (Shi Jia Sheena Ling) and Kai (Kai Hiang Tan), a lesbian couple from Singapore, were married
    on September 16, 2011, in Central Park, New York. Four friends of the bride and bride, three travelling
    from Singapore just for the occasion and a fourth a student at NYU, witnessed the marriage (along with
    some Muppets). The wedding ceremony, given the theme "authentically playful" by the bride and bride,
    was held at the Hans Christian Andersen statue, the famous Denmark writer of children's stories, near
    72nd Street and East Drive, Central Park.

    Rev. Stephen Parelli, clergy member of Metropolitan Community Church of New York and member of The
    Riverside Church, New York, officiated.

    Fridae asks Steve and Jose the following questions - they respond in this interview
  • æ: You and Jose have travelled the world for years to share your personal stories. Why do you do
    this and what motivates you?
  • æ: Were you and/or Jose involved in the ex-gay ministries? If so, tell us more.
  • æ: The debate about conversion therapy/ reparative therapy has been going on for decades
    despite increasing social acceptance around the world and psychological associations
    condemning such therapy as harmful. What is driving the ex-gay industry and why can't it be put to
    rest?
  • æ: What is the potential for harm with reparative therapy?
  • æ: Some people argue that it is the right of people to undergo reparative therapy should they want
    to "stop" being gay. What would you say to that? And if it were up to you, do you think ex-gay
    organizations should not be allowed to operate?
  • æ: Have you received hate mail or threats by those who consider you and your ministry to be
    against the "proper" Christian teachings and how do you handle it?
  • æ: Tell us more about the forum and if it would be useful to those who aren't Christian or who
    have fully accepted their sexual orientation and have no intention of "changing"? Who should
    come to the seminar?
  • æ: Tell us more about the forum and if it would be useful to those who aren't Christian or who
    have fully accepted their sexual orientation and have no intention of "changing"? Who should
    come to the seminar?
  • Steve: For my part, as an evangelical gay man (and theologian), I have had the wonderful
    experience of re-thinking just about everything that I've been taught theologically - not just
    the gay-part. If you are gay and Christian, don't just adjust yourself theologically on the
    mere six passages of scripture that are used to abuse you; but re-think the whole
    evangelical (Americanized) western, male, heterosexual, Reformation faith. Religion is the
    story we tell ourselves again and again; perhaps you need a whole different story. For the
    gay Christian - don't just tweak your theology around the question of sexual orientation; re-
    do theology from top to bottom; it is a journey once you start you will find is, perhaps, the
    spiritual life worth living.

August 2011

    Excerpt:
    "The victim was distressed, anxious and was notably shaken. Church life is the center of this
    individual's life. In fact, the pastor who made the threat had inquired from the beginning, prior to
    his speaking with the victim, to learn if the person in question was an active Christian who was
    regularly involved with the life of his church. Once the accusing pastor had determined that the
    victim would indeed suffer if removed from the family life of his church, he handed down his
    apparent decision: complete ostracism."

    (This was a limited mailing to people within Nepal)
    Program:  "Putting a Face on Homosexuality"
    •Meet Nepali gay Christians
    •Meet a gay Christian married couple from America
    •Receive your free copy of the recent translation into Nepali a paper on the author's experiences
    within the evangelical "ex-gay" movement - his evaluation, and how it did not work for him
    •Meet Other Sheep Coordinator for Nepal

    (This was a limited mailing to people within Nepal)

    Dear Christian Pastor, lay leader, and parishioner:

    According to one Internet report, just last Sunday, on 14 August, 2011,
    "Hundreds of gay, lesbian, transgender people marched with supporters in Narayanghat to
    demand equal rights under a new constitution the country is in the process of writing."

    The article goes on to say that this demonstration is the first of its kind outside of Kathmandu. The
    article also makes the claim that Nepal does, though a conservative county, accept homosexuality.

    This Other Sheep eNews that we are emailing to you invites you to visit with us, Rev. Steve Parelli
    and Jose Ortiz, a gay Christian couple from evangelical backgrounds, at some point during our
    time in Nepal. We are here until 1 September, 2011. You may phone us and make an
    appointment to see us in person (see our contact information below).

    The article in full, from The Straits Times paper dated Tuesday, August 16, 2011, is linked to this eNews

    Excerpt from the eNews:
    This past Sunday we had the privilege of ministering back-to-back with Pastor Ou Yang at Free
    Community Church, Singapore. Ou Yang preached in the Sunday morning service, and we
    presented in the afternoon on "Is There Really Such a Thing as Ex-Gay?"

    Pastor Ou Yang has been impacting this part of Asian for years with his coming-out story as gay
    and clergy. We personally know Pastor Ou Yang from MCC-NY. We appreciate his ministry and
    work. This is our second time to be with him in Asia. Our first occasion was in 2009 in Malaysia.

    This morning we awoke in our Singapore hotel to the newspaper on our doorknob which
    contained this article!

    Five Short Narratives from Kerala, India:
  • Police intimidate us;
  • a Sister helps us;
  • a gay Catholic young man meets us;
  • a conservative religious leader acting anonymously assists us;
  • talking with Muslims

    Also, Kerala Log of Events

July 2011

    Excerpt
    Following the meeting, Mr. Radhakrishnan spontaneously left an unsolicited written comment on
    a sheet of paper at the registration table in his own hand writing which he signed. It reads: "This
    meeting is absolutely important. For it is the first of its kind to happen in Kerala - where issues like
    sexuality, homosexuality, etc., are openly discussed - within a Christian Theological context."
    Signed, "MGRadhakrishnan"

    July 18, 5:00PM, Trivandrum Informal Meeting
    Local university students have arranged to hear a USA married gay Christian couple ("husband and
    husband") tell their story on Monday, July 18, at 5:00PM, at the Dr. G. Nirmalam Memorial Hall Kerala
    Veterinarian's building on Dharmalayam Road near Ayurveda College, Trivandrum.

  • Other Sheep Presents at Young Christian Lay Leaders Conference, India
  • Underlying psychological dynamics of church biases
  • Moving the India church towards inclusion of LGBT people

    Trivandrum Theological Forum (TTF) of Trivandrum, Kerala, India, a forward thinking lay-led Christian
    organization concerned, in part, with equipping the church to act and speak out on behalf of the
    marginalized of society, held its annual Young Lay Leaders Conference on July 7-9, 2011, in southern
    Kerala, India.

    Rev. Steve Parelli and Mr. Jose Ortiz, a "husband and husband" gay couple legally married in California in
    2008, were the featured guest speakers.

    In his presentation, Rev. Parelli, formerly a Baptist minister, said . . .

    Citing the psychological research of Clock and Stark, Mr. Jose Ortiz, a school counselor in the public
    schools of New York City, said there are five dimensions of how people are religious: Intellectual,
    Experiential, Ideological, Ritualistic, and Consequence.   . . .

  • About Dr. Renato Lings - New Coordinator for Europe
  • Rev. Bigelow's Latinos/as USA first annual report - Tom Bigelow's Report
  • Marriage Equality in Thailand - Rev. Dr. Kenneth Dobson

    Links in this issue of eNews:
  • Jose reflects on his conversation with Deepak, a Christian from India
  • Photos: The First Malayalam Edition of The Children Are Free
  • How Other Sheep came to be invited to India in 2010 - Our first visit
  • Index to our 2010 India visit

June 2011

    In this issue:
  • Individuals and Organizations that worked to make our trip a success
  • A paper written for Trivandrum Theological Forum: "A Christian Response to Homosexuality"
  • Listen to Steve and Jose on TV in India; Steve on Radio in Hong Kong
  • Three interviews with Indian activists published on YouTube
  • Felix Liew writes first hand reports on Other Sheep in Guangzhou and Beijing
  • Honk Kong: Working with Blessed Minority Christian Fellowship
  • Guangzhou, China: An LGBT center for college students
  • Now in Mandarin: The "ex-gay" paper
  • A Hong Kong lesbian Christian writes about Other Sheep
  • Beijing, China: An LGBT house fellowship; and the Beijing LGBT center
  • Vacationing in Hainan: "Yes, we're husband and husband"
  • Photos: The picture tells the story
  • Answering questions on knowing God

    "If Christian mercy is gone, then at least Venetian justice still exists." - From the movie Dangerous Beauty.
    Where I could not find, as a gay man, "Christian mercy" within my own evangelical Baptist denomination
    and within my own nuclear "born-again" Christian family, I have, instead, been handed justice from my
    secular State.

    In This Issue
  • Editorial: What David Tyree and my football-loving father have in common: They both fumbled
  • The euphoric feelings that caused me to breakout in dance! (Like David before the ark.)
  • Featured: Link to New York Times Photo of Steve and Poster, and more . . .
  • ABC 7 Eyewitness News video with Steve's poster board photo of Steve and Jose on their
    wedding day
  • WCBS-TV video of Steve with poster board wedding day photo
  • Nathaniel Brooks of The New York Times photo shot of Steve with poster board photo wedding-
    day photo
  • Photos of Steve Parelli with David Tyree by Kelly Mapes
  • Video of the religious right singing
  • Letter to Five Key Senators

    Travel dates and place for Steve and Jose in Asia and for Stan Kimer in Kenya and Rwanda

    UN Human Rights Council Passes First-Ever Resolution on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
    This is a press release from 17 organizations - see end of article for their info. Who voted how?

    We are happy to introduce Jennie and Lisa who have asked Other Sheep to help them network in order to
    meet queer people as they begin their year-long travel. Check out, below, the names of the 16 countries
    they will be visiting, and if you have any suggestions regarding people you feel they should meet, please
    email them at jenniandlisa@outandaround.com


May 2011

    Below is an email from Naomi Abraham who will be in Kenya and Uganda for three weeks beginning May
    28.  She is a journalist who will be going "beyond the headlines" to learn what positive attitudes there are
    in Uganda and Kenya towards LGBT people.  If you have any leads that could help her with this project, or
    can offer yourself as an interviewee, I know she will appreciate it.  Please email her at the following email
    address and tell her "Steve Parelli of Other Sheep" contacted you.  Below is her email of introduction.   
    Her email address is:  naomi.abraham2010@gmail.com



March 2011

    Other Sheep East Africa (OSEA) and Other Sheep Kenya (OSK) dissolved.  
    Leaders continue the vision and spirit of OSEA and OSK with new organization.

    An article dated March 1, 2011, by Cathleen Falsani, Religion News Service.

February 2011

    The New York City February 7th Memorial Service for David Kato will be held at Abyssinian Baptist Church
    and not at The Riverside Church as was originally announced. Please note the change of location.

    "In Memory of David Kato."  Delivered at the Love Alive International Sunday Memorial Service January 30,
    2011, 4 PM --meeting in the sanctuary of All Souls Church, 1157 Lexington Ave., New York, NY--   by Rev.
    Stephen Parelli, Executive Director, Other Sheep

January 2011

    Place and Address:  Love Alive International Sanctuary of Praise and Worship Center, New York, Inc.  
    1157 Lexington Avenue (@ East 80 Street ).  Date and Time:  January 30, 2011, 4:00PM - 6:00PM.
    Officiating:  Service will be conducted by The Right Reverend Stacy S. Latimer, Senior Pastor.

    If you are looking for a way to express your desire to remember David Kato in some tangible way, you may
    find this the means you would like to use.

    "It must be said again and again in any society where religious teachings on homosexuality dominate,
    that the view of the religious majority is not to be legislated onto the views and practices of the sexual
    minority.   As long as a gay man or woman does not infringe upon the rights of other individuals, the
    homosexual (who is often Christian) has the same right as his heterosexual counterpart, to interpret the
    Bible according to his or her understanding and to answer only before God (and not to the government or
    to the church)."

eNews Archives

on this page...

January 2011 -
December 2011
This website was reconstructed in June of 2007
Visits made to this web page since January 2011
"I have other sheep that are not of this
fold.  I must bring them in also."  
John 10:16
 
"I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold.  I must bring them also."  
John 10:16 NRSV

Other Sheep eNews Archives
for January - December 2011
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