Drag Show + Church | Week 26 | Confidence Revolution
A few days ago I was walking down the streets of NYC with my husband and sister-in-law. There was a breeze and the air was balmy. We decided to head to a jazz club but on our way we stumbled upon a church with open doors. Open doors.
My husband asked if I'd like to go in, and I knew I did. Even standing outside of the church felt good and uplifting. The church was white stucco, and it had a small set of stairs and a garden leading into the four walls. At first glance it looked like any other church. The prayer candles were lit, wooden pews lined the center of the room, stained glass windows looked onto the parishioners.
When we walked in, it took me few seconds to realize I was in a church whose priest had chosen to walk with outliers, just like Jesus. The Bible tells how Jesus left the 99 to go searching for the 1. Jesus left those who knew and believed in him to go searching for the one. The one who was hurt, broken and beaten. The one who had seen despair, the one who was sick, the one who needed unconditional love like a man who lives in a desert needs life giving water.
The church, during gay pride weekend, hosted a drag show. A string of performers in drag -- sang and danced and cheered each other on. And between numbers, the priest, 5'5 and 140 lbs. soaking wet, stood in front of the congregation and told us how loved we are by God and how we are all royalty. It was beautiful and moving and I cried like a baby. It was a holy moment.
But before I cried, my brain was short circuiting. I grew up Mexican Catholic (traditional), and for the past 4 years I have attended a Baptist church (also traditional.) So for 32 years and 360 days I have only experienced church as traditional. This was anything but traditional, it was TOTALLY outside any paradigm I had about church.
In the moment, I knew what was happening.
It wasn't that I didn't like it, or enjoy it, it was that my brain was having to re-calibrate. "What was this?" "How was I going to be able to reconcile ALL of my 32 years and 360 days plus this new experience?"
I cut myself some slack and knew that song by song, performer by performer, I would settle into this new more expanded version, and I did, and it was lovely.
Guys, sometimes we get freaked out by things because they are different from what we are used to. We don't freak out because they are wrong, or bad -- simply because they are different. In those moments, cut yourself some slack and allow your brain and heart to re-calibrate and EXPAND. The more we know about others, the more beautiful they (and we) become.
love and grace, catia
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