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ALREADYALLIED

BEING AN ALLY INCLUDES DEVELOPING OUR ATTITUDES, UNDERSTANDINGS, THEOLOGY, AND GROWTH WITHIN OUR FAITH JOURNEY - SO THAT LGBTIQA+ PERSONS MIGHT KNOW THEY MATTER TO US - LIVING IN THEIR FULL DIGNITY IN GOD'S IMAGE - IN CHURCHES, CULTURES, MAHI, AND HOMES.

AlreadyEnough has a few thoughts to share around what it means and doesn't mean to be an Ally. 

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There are levels of integration to being an Ally.

Where are you on this journey?

1: Awareness

As straight heterosexual, cisgender persons in a faith community, we know we have privilege.

We know discrimination against LGBTIQA+ is wrong.

We know LGBTIQA+ people can have a deep, authentic and active faith.

We are kind, but we don't get involved - Quiet on both fronts - if you like.

We don't yet know our 'why'.

 

2: Action 

As Allies, we have done some recommended reading.

We know our 'why' and are not shy to speak up when required.

We use our privilege to end systemic oppression against LGBTIQA+ communities – at work, in Church, in groups, and in our homes.

We might even join the Pride march and enjoy it.

We are available and approachable as inclusive Allies.

 

3: Integration

As Allies, we continue to learn, discover and grow.

We have imbibed the change we want to see in our faith communities.

We are affirming and desiring equity for all.

We know this is a faith journey for all, and we are gracious.

We continue to pray, learn, listen and act. And pray some more.

We know our 'why'.

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EYES WIDE OPEN
KNOW YOUR 'WHY'.

As Allies, we also will have to deal with a few roadblocks, pushbacks and heartbreaks. We need to be aware that 'coming-out' as an Ally can upset some people. And this is why knowing our 'why' is so vital. In all honesty, being an Ally includes some dangers – there may be consequences. Allies have lost friends, positions in leadership, jobs, support, community, family, and funding. And this sucks beyond words - it can break our hearts. But, it can also be a HOLY invitation more profound into God's heart. So, here is the opportunity to ensure we know 'why' we are an Ally.

ALREADYENOUGH has a lot of resources, and we realise this can be overwhelming. So, we have picked out one (easy-to-read) book from each section to get you off the runway... but don't stop there - there are fabulous podcasts, insightful videos, and thought-provoking blogs to check out. Enjoy. 

Choose one; read, digest, pray, repeat.

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Find me on AlreadyShifting

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Find me on AlreadyOut/IN

Find me on AlreadyChurched

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Ally's come in many forms - however, it's important to remember that being an Ally doesn't mean we are 'part' of the Rainbow/Queer community; we are supporters - not members. We are not the fighters in the ring; we stand outside the ring, each Ally at a corner rail, ready to ward off the armchair critiques, the self-appointed refs, the biased theologians, and perhaps tackle the rotten tomato throwers out the back door. 

Be an Inclusive Ally: ABCs of LGBTIQ+

– Lisa Koenecke

'Be an Inclusion Ally' brilliantly illuminates the path to becoming the most supportive Ally you can be personally and professionally. This book is the quintessential fast, funny, and ready resource for educating yourself and others about the LGBTQ+ community. With wit and wisdom woven throughout, it's a goldmine for individuals who have questions but don't know whom to ask. This book celebrates YOU for being willing to learn more and create an inclusionary workplace, school, and home.

Out & Allied Volume 1: An Anthology of Performance Pieces Written by LGBTQ Youth & Allies

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Out & Allied Youth Writing Project has been updated to include a more comprehensive glossary and information about programs around the US doing theatre for LGBTQ and Allied advocacy. These 34 performance pieces are coupled with Do-It-Yourself tips for youth leaders and their supportive adults.

The Savvy Ally: A Guide for Becoming a Skilled LGBTQ+ Advocate

– Jeannie Gainsburg

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​This book will be useful for teachers, counselors, social workers, nurses, medical technicians, and college professors, as well as parents who want to be supportive of their LGBTQ+ child, but don't know how. This is not a book about why to be an ally. This is a book about how to be an ally. The goal of The Savvy Ally is to create more confident, active allies who are effective advocates for change. This informative, entertaining, and supportive guidebook will surely jump-start even the most tentative ally.

Out & Allied Volume 2: An Anthology of Performance Pieces by LGBTQ Youth & Allies

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An anthology featuring 46 plays, monologues, poems and songs as well as tools for social change. This collection celebrates the strength and resiliency of youth, and especially LGBTQ youth and their allies. Contributions highlight the work being done in the field of queer and allied youth theatre. Included in this volume: a case for faith-based community advocacy; tools for true dialogue over discussion; guidance on facilitating youth leadership.

Here are some favourite podcasters that continue to offer Holy invitations. Choose one; listen, digest, pray, repeat.

Did you know that LGBTIQA+ Allies have their own flag!?

You can find some history of how the Ally flag came about here

KNOWING AOTEAROA'S HISTORY

Aotearoa has its own unique story to tell. It's a history marred with prejudice, fear, and (de)criminalisation with incredible twists and turns, surprises, courage, and reforms.

Parliament has its very own unique Rainbow Room representing the Rainbow and Takatapui (AlreadyOUT/IN) voices that have shaped and continue to lead Aotearoa into a nation of equality and hope.

Check out this amazing resource  

OUR HISTORY OUR TIMELINE

A timeline of Local New Zealand Rainbow History.

While by no means an exclusive list, this PDF timeline notes some key moments in the national rainbow history of Aotearoa New Zealand.

https://pride.school.nz/support/history-whakapapa/

Also check out  - A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE LGBTQ+ COMMUNITY IN NEW ZEALAND - by Peter Lineham

Enjoy listening to some of the voices that have been change-makers and trail-blazers.

More stories and interviews can be found here

REMEMBER...

Know your 'why.'

Allies are supports not Rainbow members.

'A' means Asexual, Agender, or Aromantic.

Know the History - Aotearoa is unique.

Unlearning is uncomfortable.

Relearnings are Holy invitations.

Read much - Listen well - Pray more.

No one has all the answers - it's ok - get used to it.

AlreadyEnough plans to link Allies to each other for support and ideas. Sometimes Allies need to know we are not alone either, that people, just like us, who know our 'why', can connect and find a safe spiritual breathing space - and, have a few laughs along the way. If you are such an Ally and would like join us on the 'AlreadyAllied Aotearoa' FB page here and/or Freedhearts Aotearoa New Zealand here

A Blessing for you
Put your feet on the ground,
breathe deeply -in -out -repeat...

Holy whisper of Wisdom, Grace, and Justice
thank you for being ever-present.

Speak. Stir. Invite. Shake. Shift. Hold. Move.
Clean our ears to listen,
Embolden our hearts to brevity and openness,
Wipe dirt from our eyes,
seeing you in all people
we have been told you are not.

Lift our heads cupped gently in Wisdom,
towards unlearning – and relearning
May we grow in you
never-ending

 

Have mercy on us,
(breathing in)
(breathing out).

Break into our silence
disrupt complacent ignorance
refuse our urge to regurgitate harmful theology,
beliefs that keep people out –
and others in.
 
Rattle us to search and question
as acts of faith  
inviting us, compelling us
to seek authentic inclusion.
Being included authentically
in your radical embrace, also
 
God – us - created in your image, your essence
our souls always belonging to you.


Thank you for the messy and fabulous gift of humanity

for your original blessing of being.
Loving us deeply, furiously, without reservation
never letting go.
May we know our humanity as a blessing
inviting us into community with you.
 
Holy Spirit, Wisdom, Sophia
get us off the runway
allow us to fly
in the direction your breath flows
and land where your Holy encounters lead.
Thank you for this ridiculous grace
Humanity infused with divinity
loving us as we are
Full stop.

 

Amanda Pilbrow

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