Today’s post is from our friend Tami Moberg, who’s continuing our I’m Sorry series, and sharing her own answer to the frequently asked “So what are you sorry for anyway?” Come back Friday for another I’m Sorry guest post from a friend. See ya Sunday!
I never dreamed 23 years ago I would be at the Gay Pride Parade in Chicago with my son Ben. I’m not sure many moms would guess that that would be part of their journey with their child.
After Ben came out to us we found The Marin Foundation. We heard about their organization through our older son and a book he had stumbled upon entitled “Love is an Orientation”. We made our first trip in the spring of 2012 to attend a Living in the Tension meeting. It was truly a blessing to this mom’s heart. We sat around a table with others who shared our same faith and story. We had found a safe place. We left feeling filled and ready to go back to our community with a new sense of who and what we were called to be.
In the spring of 2013 we heard that The Marin Foundation was doing the “I’m Sorry Campaign”. When Ben asked me if I would like to go to the Gay Pride Parade in Chicago. I was all in! I was ready for some time with our friends at Marin and loved the idea we could be Jesus to those who came to the parade. We booked our tickets and flew down for the weekend. I felt like I landed at home again.
We had dinner with old and new friends. It was a beautiful night. We gathered together and listened to others stories as we ate pizza and enjoyed the night from the patio. I soaked in every conversation around me. I wanted to know about everyone’s journey and how they were doing life as an LGBT person. Every conversation drew me in. What made the night with these friends is not because we are LGBT or a parent of one, but because we love Jesus. He is our common denominator. He is the reason we gather. In every conversation His name came up. He is the reason we are trying to be the change and love differently than the church. I’m Sorry Campaign puts that love in action.
The next morning we met up and headed to the parade. Some headed to the place in the parade where the “sign holders” would be. These are the people who hold the signs that say “All homos will go to Hell”, “Turn and Repent”, etc. Heartbreaking signs. The signs that make you want to run from anything of the Church because you don’t want to be associated with that. A group went to where they were and stood between the parade and them, thwarting the arrows being thrown.
I stayed back with Ben and others and was able to give out a few hugs and love the best I know how. But I have to admit, I had no idea what this day was going to look like. And I was a little nervous. Brent, a Marin Foundation intern, kept asking me if I was okay. And it was so sweet, this gesture. I said I was great, and it felt true to me.
Then, I leaned up against the railing and saw something unexpected, something beautiful. Churches. Marching. There were blocks and blocks of different denominations, different ethnicities, old and young, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and straight all marching in solidarity. Walking for themselves, for their friends, for God. A procession of heaven.
Later on, I took a break from the parade and wandered down the street where I was stopped by two girls. Studying my shirt, they asked why I was “sorry.”
I told them because of the treatment at the hands of fellow Christians and the Church. This answer led us into a deeper conversation, they asked more questions, we kept talking, the conversation transcending into an incredible moment.
And that is why I’m grateful for The Marin Foundation. For the opportunity to go, to see, to imitate Jesus, to find him looking at us, loving us, changing us. I’m so grateful.