Affirming: A Memoir of Faith, Sexuality, and Staying in the Church -

Affirming: A Memoir of Faith, Sexuality, and Staying in the Church

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What is it like to discover that something you’ve believed all your life might be wrong?

Sally Gary knew since her early adulthood that she was attracted to women. But as a devoted Christian, she felt there was no way to fully embrace this aspect of her identity while remaining faithful. Now, as she prepares to marry the love of her life, she’s ready to speak out about why—and how—her perspective changed.

In this deeply personal memoir, Sally traces the experiences, conversations, and scriptural reading that culminated in her seeing her sexuality as something that made sense within the context of her faith—not outside of it or in opposition to it. Along the way, she addresses specific aspects of her journey that will resonate with many other gay Christians: the loneliness and isolation of her previously celibate life, the futile attempts she made to resist or even “change” her sexual orientation, and the fear of intimacy that followed a lifetime of believing same-sex relationships were sinful.

Sally’s story—one of heritage, learning, courage, and love—is written especially for the generations of LGBTQ Christians after her who are questioning whether they can stay part of the church they call home. It’s a resounding reminder that, just like Sally’s own heart, things can change, and sometimes, when we earnestly search for the truth, we find it in the most unexpected places.

About the Author

Sally Gary is founder and executive director of CenterPeace, a nonprofit organization that has been helping churches and families have Christ-like conversations about faith and sexuality since 2006. She is also the author of Loves God, Likes Girls.

"Sally Gary loves God and loves the church, and this memoir is an undeniable testament to that fact. In it, she poignantly chronicles her many years of faithful discernment that have led her to change her mind about same-sex relationships. By sharing her story with such thoughtfulness and grace, she invites other Christians to join her in rethinking their views while holding fast to the love of Jesus and the truth of the Bible. Her words will open countless hearts, bring healing to those who are hurting, and help build up the church's witness for future generations."
-- Matthew Vines
author of God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships

"This is a powerful read--not only for Christians who want to better understand the LGBTQ community, but for anyone wanting to rekindle their faith. A few chapters in, I thought I was reading a simple, folksy memoir of growing up in the Churches of Christ. By the end, I had tears in my eyes. In a world that increasingly sees Christians as hypocrites and homophobes, Sally's story is just what we need to remind us of what drew so many of us to Jesus in the first place."
-- Justin Lee
author of Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gays-vs.-Christians Debate

"Faith and sexuality have been explored, debated, and affirmed since the creation. This has always been a difficult discussion. Answers are not always easy. I have known Sally Gary for nearly twenty years. She has been--and still is--deeply committed to faith, Scripture, and the church. In sync with the same spirit she has demonstrated all these years, I recommend this vital work. Sally does not demand agreement, but she appeals for understanding--for a hearing of her personal journey as a gay Christ-follower and as a member of his body, the church."
-- Don McLaughlin
senior minister of North Atlanta Church of Christ

Publisher: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Pub date: feb 23, 2021
240 pages
Format: Paperback