Lydia Meredith is the founder of Beacon of Hope, Inc.—Renaissance Learning Center, with a mission to strengthen families and communities and lift poor children and their families out of poverty. Lydia has Master Degrees in Business, Christian Education, and Public Policy from Vanderbilt University, The Interdenominational Theological Center, and Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, respectively. She married and had three sons with Reverend Dennis A. Meredith, who is now an openly gay pastor and leading a congregation of over one-thousand members—predominantly lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. She and the pastor divorced in 2008; but remain close friends.
When Jeff Chu came out to his parents as a gay man, his devout Christian mother cried. And cried. Every time she looked at him. For months. As a journalist and a believer, Chu knew that he had to get to the heart of a question that had been haunting him for years: Does Jesus really love me?
The quest to find an answer propels Chu on a remarkable cross-country journey to discover the God “forbidden to him” because of his sexuality. Surveying the breadth of the political and theological spectrum, from the most conservative viewpoints to the most liberal, he tries to distill what the diverse followers of Christ believe about homosexuality and to understand how these people who purportedly follow the same God and the same Scriptures have come to hold such a wide range of opinions. Why does Pastor A believe that God hates me, especially because of my gayness? Why does Person B believe that God loves me, gayness and all?
From Brooklyn to Nashville to California, from Westboro Baptist Church and their god hates fags protest signs to the pioneering Episcopal bishop Mary Glasspool, who proclaims a message of liberation and divine love, Chu captures spiritual snapshots of Christian America at a remarkable moment, when tensions between both sides in the culture wars have rarely been higher. Both funny and heartbreaking, perplexing and wise, Does Jesus Really Love Me? is an intellectual, emotional, and spiritual pilgrimage that reveals a portrait of a faith and a nation at odds.
As a young gay man, David Bennett saw Christianity as an enemy to freedom for LGBTQI people, and his early experiences with prejudice and homophobia led him to become a gay activist. But when Jesus came into his life in a highly unexpected way, he was led down a path he never would have predicted or imagined.
In A War of Loves, David recounts his dramatic story, from his early years exploring new age religions and French existentialism to his university experiences as an activist. Following supernatural encounters with God, he embarked on a journey not only of seeking to reconcile his faith and sexuality but also of discovering the higher call of Jesus Christ.
A War of Loves investigates what the Bible teaches about sexuality and demonstrates the profligate, unqualified grace of God for all people. David describes the joy and intimacy he found in following Jesus Christ and how love has taken on a radically new and far richer meaning for him.
Offering invaluable insights for students, parents, and educators, Lisa Wade analyzes the mixed messages of hookup culture on today’s college campuses within the history of sexuality, the evolution of higher education, and the unfinished feminist revolution. She draws on broad, original, insightful research to explore a challenging emotional landscape, full of opportunities for self-definition but also the risks of isolation, unequal pleasure, competition for status, and sexual violence.
Accessible and open-minded, compassionate and honest, American Hookup explains where we are and how we got here, asking, “Where do we go from here?”