I accept the Fort Worth PFLAG Equality Award on behalf of all people who hunger and thirst for justice and righteousness. It is a truly humbling moment to be recognized as an activist and minister. These are not professions and paths one chooses for status and recognition. Nevertheless, I thank you from the deepest regions of my soul.
What an honor to be chosen for this award by PFLAG Fort Worth. You are an amazing group of people whose work inspires me and countless others. I always cherish the moments I experience in your presence.
Throughout this past year I have felt called by God to accept a deeper prophetic role in the struggle for queer equality. From protesting outside the homophobic Denton Bible Church to posting demands for open doors on the doors of every church in Denton on Ash Wednesday to writing for and granting interviews to national religious news outlets to founding and leading the only explicitly queer church I know of to leading our church to place two ads in the Denton Record Chronicle calling for queer equality to countless rallies, writings, interviews, conversations, protests and other actions, I have certainly accepted a deeper prophetic role. I have no doubt that God has lead me in all of this work…because to be honest…everything that has happened has truly been beyond my wildest dreams.
There is no doubt that God gets the credit for all of this, but on a human level I know and you need to know that none of this would be possible without the love, support and constant encouragement of my wife Emily. There is also no doubt that my little boys Jeff, Phillip and Quinley also daily provide fuel and propel my drive to make the world a better place. The Rev. Dr. Steve Sprinkle at Brite Divinity School has served as my mentor and friend throughout my work this year and I don’t think any of this would have happened if it had not been for him. Lastly, I wanted to thank all of those who have been or continue to be a part of our church in Denton…without all of you none of this would have happened.
With God at my side, I can promise you I will keep acting up until we reach that day when all of humanity will no longer have to hunger and thirst for justice and righteousness and we can all be the queers we were created to be.