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Know the West

‘Christian norms’


I fully support the author of “The queer Mormon policy reversal is not enough” (HCN, 5/27/19), especially in her remarks about some seeking death as an escape from the “sin” of being “queer.” Everyone needs a center; for me, it is my Episcopal Church community, which — at least in its West Coast manifestation — is willing to adapt to a Bible interpretation that is modern and consonant with our times. As our local parish has become inclusive and welcoming, we become more closely connected with our gay community, having potlucks and monthly get-togethers with people who play an integral part in church activities, governance and outreach. In such a context, the term “queer” ceases to have any literal meaning, as does the term “Christian norms.”  In our men’s Bible study (a carryover from different times), we interpret the scriptures in their historical setting. We are relatively free from ecclesiastical control, except to celebrate the Eucharist as our coming together in fellowship with the personhood of the resurrected Jesus. I do not consider the author as “queer,” but rather precious, unique and a sister in Christ.

Malcolm Hepworth
Port Townsend, Washington