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Queer Scholar Reflects on Palm Sunday as Coming Out Anniversary



A doctoral candidate in theology and peace studies at the University of Notre Dame, Flora x. Tang, from Beijing, China, shared a unique reflection on Palm Sunday. Recalling her personal experience six years ago, she described the liturgical procession as her chosen ‘coming out anniversary’ day.

For Flora, the blend of familiarity in the Palm Sunday rituals, especially the procession and hymns, created a poignant moment to acknowledge her queer identity. She highlighted the affirmation she found in the belief that God’s love extends unconditionally, a concept symbolized by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.

The Gospel of Mark‘s narrative on Jesus revealing his identity as the Messiah before facing death resonated with Flora’s journey. She pondered the complex questions raised by these biblical events, exploring themes of suffering and societal acceptance.

Despite the challenges posed by traditional interpretations of Palm Sunday and Holy Week, Flora expressed a desire for a more inclusive and affirming approach towards queer individuals within the Catholic Church and society.

Reflecting on her decision to come out on Palm Sunday, Flora emphasized the importance of hope and joy in the queer experience. She expressed a longing for a world where queer individuals can thrive and be celebrated, rather than face discrimination and violence.

Rachel Adams

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