Monday, June 13, 2011

What's up with the "archlesbian" thing?


So here's the deal: This year Pride Day in L.A. fell on Pentecost ... and since all our bishops were already booked and I was the best we could do for the wave-at-the-crowd person we decided to have some fun -- ergo the "Archlesbian" sign.

Now, of course I'm not actually "an archlesbian" ... much less THE Archlesbian.


But it's kind of a Genesis 50:20 thing. ("they meant it for harm but God meant it for good") It's a title I've been given over the years in some of the uber-conservative blogs and it pretty much stuck. In fact, a few years ago one of the more conservative rectors in the diocese and I found ourselves arguing on the same side of some issue ... I forget what it was at the moment. And he made the point at the microphone that who ever thought they'd see him up agreeing with the Archlesbian?

And then last month at our clergy conference -- when I had my hand up to comment on something or the other -- Bishop Bruno called on me as ... you guessed it. "Let's hear from the Archlesbian." So there you have it. That's about as official as you get in archlesbian land.

And so ... as noted above ... when we couldn't get a bishop for Pride this year since they were all booked for Pentecost we decided to go with the Archlesbian thing. And it turned out to be a great choice.

As we drove down Santa Monica Boulevard past the estimated 400,000 people gathered along the parade route it was pretty amazing to see the faces light up ... to actually hear folks reading the sign out-loud and then laughing ... clapping ... waving ... giving us a "shout out."

Next year I hope we'll have one of our bishops riding again ... and a bigger turnout since we won't be competing with Pentecost. But at the end of the day we accomplished what we set out to do: show up and make God's love tangible to the LGBT community. And from this archlesbian's perspective, that's a day's work very well done indeed!

19 comments:

Kirkepiscatoid said...

Shouldn't they give you some special piece of liturgical dress-up hoo-ha for being the Diocesan Archlesbian? I realize a pointy hat might be a little over the top, but maybe a little stick bigger than a verger staff and shorter than a crozier?

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Make that "The Archlesbian of the World Wide Rainbow Province of Justice and Love."

Ride on in majesty, m'dear! You look fabulous!

Will said...

Nevertheless, whatever they call you, please keep showing up. Those of us who are not so gifted thank you for your ministry.

Rick+ said...

Delightfully funny! I think it is our sense of humor that allows us to survive without becoming bitter.

Besides... now that you're the Archlesbian, it'll look great on your vita when you're up for Primate of All Lesbians. Gotta think of the future, Susan. :)

Muthah+ said...

Like the word 'Queer' -- it they are going to call us that--let's make something really GOOD of it! I think every diocese needs an archlesbian--kind of like the archdeacon.

And finally when a straight white male gets the position, they we will know we have arrived!

Muthah+ said...

@ Rick+---most women do not aspire to be Primates--that is a boy's fantasy!

Rick+ said...

Well played, Muthah+, well played.

LGMarshall said...

How embarrassing.

Ana said...

It might have been funny if it had been in quotes, i.e. "Archlesbian". I really don't like all that it implies, and I would really ask the men to cut that shit out. It's just another way to objectify you, mama.
You do look great, though.

MikeC said...

Genesis 50:20 sums it up. How many movements (and people) have been known by names originally given by their detractors? You're doing great work and it's inspiring to see you out there fighting the good fight!

JCF said...

"How embarrassing"

Yes, LGM, you frequently are---but God loves you anyway (and I'm trying).

We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept. ... But wisdom is justified of all her children (Luke 7:32-35)

uffda51 said...

A potential presidential candidate who thinks Paul Revere rode to warn the British is embarrassing. A priest who brings the Episcopal message of inclusion to 400,000 people is not.

LGMarshall said...

Ana says... 'I don't really agree with all it ['ArchLesbian of the Episcopal Church'] implies... & I wish the Men would have cut that '&%$!@' out -- it objectifies Susan.'

I agree with Ana. Very Embarrassing. It's too Worldly, for a Church Leader to put herself in that position.

JCF: Why the Luke 7.32-35 reference?... which has to do with rejecting both John's Baptism, and Jesus' gift of Salvation through Faith. I accept & respond to both Ministries.

I know that you believe that same-genital relations on parade in the public square are part of Jesus' Ministry. But, what scripture goes with that...?

SUSAN RUSSELL said...

#1 ... I think you missed Ana's point.

#2 ... Matthew 28:19

MarkBrunson said...

Why are you here, LGMarshall?

JCF said...

I forget, LGM: as a card-carrying liberal, I'm never permitted to quote Scripture. Because I'll labor under the illusion I can interpret it for myself. And only conservatives may do that. They have that Assurance-of-Orthodoxy thang, which I don't/can't...

IT said...

"Same genital relations on parade"? That sounds pretty icky, as tho' people are doing it in the streets but of course
making it all and only about "icky " sex is part of LGM's modus operandi. But my marriage is neither defined by nor limited to sexual expression and I am quite confident that the witness my wife and I bear as a devoted couple can be an inspiration to those not blinded by their fear ignorance or hate.

LGMarshall said...

JCF-- still asking why you used the Luke scripture... waiting for your explanation...'we have piped unto you and ye have not danced...'

If youre still stumped,

May I recommend to you buying New International Version Study Bible?.... it'll clear up much. [Although, you will have to don a disguise, and venture into a Christian Book Store... and beware, you may come across a Christian-- but if you keep your head down, and throw the $40 on the counter, you may escape with your Unbelief in tact. Whew.]

SUSAN RUSSELL said...

LG ... sorry, dearie. You don't get to decide who's a Christian and who isn't. At least not on this blog. Leaving your comment up in case JCF wants to wade through the sarcasm and respond to the scripture question. If not then leave it alone and go find somewhere else to sharpen your claws.