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When I was traveling recently, people asked me how we celebrate Pride here in Houston. The only answer I could come up with was… “Big!” I notice during this season that the spirit of freedom and joy extend so much farther than a single day or weekend, that it seems to be infused into every molecule of our swampy air. There are so many headlines and heartaches that hang over the LGBTQIA2+ community, especially here and now in Texas. It is a good and holy thing for all of us to remember that we are more than our very valid fears and hurt. God makes us a people who are also overflowing with liberation and care.

As with Juneteenth, Pride is a celebration that centers an oppressed community and yet is a blessing to the whole of creation. Pride commemorates the sacred exodus led by transgender women of color against institutionalized violence and the prevailing drive to dehumanize. But Pride is also more than bricks; it is the subversive power of wearing flowers in your hair and rainbows on your shoulder even so. Just as the women of Palestine showed me a place and people who long for shalom, who are more than stories and scenes of rubble and loss. We/They are also tied to joy, laughter, and hope.

We have good reason to be alert and active, but also to delight. Just as sabbath rest makes a proclamation that the base of our belonging and belovedness is in our being and not just our production, so does joy proclaim that lament and weariness ultimately pale against the promise of prevailing love. Joy is holy revolutionary resistance against indignity and despair. May we all be blessed by such proud goodness.

Reverend Ashley Dellagiacoma, Associate Rector