This may seem strange or even silly but last Sunday was the very first time that Debbie and I had ever attended a Pride event. I do not know how St. Louis Pride Fest compares with the rest of the world, but to us, it was a monumental gathering. With a great amount of excitement we waited for the parade to begin. As part of Oasis Missouri group, we walked with our own pride, not only with our new church family but also with our oldest son, daughter-in-law, two grandchildren and Tucker, our youngest.
As the parade began, two things amazed me. The first, that there are SO many LGBT people and their supporters in St. Louis and the second, that there are so many who are willing to march in the parade and let their support be known through their shouting, whistling and clapping for those who were walking. There were hundreds and hundreds of people!
There were many reasons to walk in this parade but one of the greatest reasons for us happened to be Tucker. Life as the child of a lesbian (or gay) couple is not easy. He has seen in the past how the Church treated us and it was painful. Personally, he suffers weekly from slurs, profanity and actual physical abuse that only one child can inflict upon another. Yet on Sunday, his personal pride was on display during the parade. He exclaimed to me, “I am so excited!” He went on to say, “There are so many people just like us!”
These are good things that are happening. As we continue our struggle for inclusion, we have to remember that it is not for ourselves alone that we walk with Integrity…it is for all those who are coming along beside us and behind us.