Sexuality, theology, history and church life are explored in four new LGBTQ Christian books this month.
“Tantric Jesus: The Erotic Heart of Early Christianity” by James Hughes Reho is already a bestseller at Q Spirit’s Jesus in Love blog. The other books for February are “The Bloomsbury Reader in Religion, Sexuality and Gender,” “The Church of Whosoever” and “Queering Richard Rolle.”
BESTSELLER AT JESUS IN LOVE / Q SPIRIT
“Tantric Jesus: The Erotic Heart of Early Christianity” by James Hughes Reho.
An erotic Christ emerges from this guide to the history and practice of transformative or “tantric” Christianity. It includes step-by-step instructions for prayer mantras, breath exercises, using icons, eye gazing, foot washing and tantric sex with a partner of the same or opposite sex in the “sacrament of the bridal chamber.” The wisdom of Jesus and the early church is connected with ancient traditions from India and Tibet. The author is an Episcopal priest and certified yoga instructor who pastors a Lutheran-Episcopal church in Fort Myers, Florida. Foreword by Matthew Fox, creation spirituality theologian and former Catholic priest. Published by Destiny Books, an imprint of Inner Traditions.
“The Bloomsbury Reader in Religion, Sexuality and Gender” by Donald Boisvert and Carly Daniel-Hughes (editors).
Key texts on religion, sexuality and gender come together in a thought-provoking book designed as a textbook for college courses. Many of the 24 chapters cover LGBTQ themes, including sodomy in Christian theology, transsexual embodiment, memoirs of a Pentecostal boyhood, queering the Beguines, hermaphrodites in medieval Islamic law and male love in Japanese Buddhism. The introduction begins with Saint Wilgefortis, whose image adorns the cover. The book is organized into three sections: Bodies, Desires and Performances. Each section ends with discussion questions. Contributors include major figures Michel Foucault and Judith Butler, plus Mark Jordan, Jakob Hero, Lynne Gerber and many others. Co-editors Boisvert and Daniel-Hughes are both religion professors at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada. Published by Bloomsbury.
““The Church of Whosoever: Extra Grace Required” by Robert Hill.
Diversity is celebrated in a novel about the intersecting lives of LGBT Christians. They are coping with the aftermath of their pastor’s heart attack. Congregants include a single grandmother, a lesbian couple, an African American female impersonator, a dual-gendered person and many others. The author is a retired Army officer who has been active in many different churches, including MCC, Episcopal, Methodist, and Presbyterian. Published by Mockingbird Lane Press.
“Queering Richard Rolle: Mystical Theology and the Hermit in 14th-Century England” by Christopher M. Roman.
Queer ways of understanding and connecting with God are found in this scholarly book about the mysterious medieval English hermit Richard Rolle. His religious writings were widely read in the Middle Ages. Rolle began a queer journey when he became a hermit, defining himself in opposition to normal society. The book explores his ontology, phenomenology, and his queer use of sound and music as a means of opening the body to experience the divine. The author is associate professor of English at Kent State University in Ohio. Published by Palgrave Macmillan.
Coming soon and available for pre-order
Feb. 24, 2017
“The Straight Mind in Corinth: Queer Readings across 1 Corinthians 11:2-16” by Gillian Townsley. Published by SBL Press.
April 5, 2017
“Visions of Sodom: Religion, Homoerotic Desire, and the End of the World in England, c. 1550–1850” by H.G. Cocks. Published by University of Chicago Press.
More LGBTQ Christian books
Queer Theology book list (from Patrick Cheng)
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