A theology of liberation, as shown in the work of Gustavo Gutierrez, https://www.amazon.com/dp/B007BPDIDS/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1
was born in Latin America. It emphasizes social and political analysis of oppression. It has been crucial in my life, as I have written before on this blog.
In my experience and the experience of others, I know, however, personal experiences of oppression also matter to give insight into the structures of oppression, especially for others. This has been true in terms of women’s oppression, and it is true in regard to the oppression of LGBT people.
One of the best human beings that I met in this world has an immense and amazing soul for inclusiveness and solidarity to everybody. He amazed me in how he is naturally with all the people, always sharing the best from him to others without any expectations in return; details that make me say constantly that that kind of generous-human is almost “extinguished” from the world surface. He is a gay.
In the beginning of my adolescence, I started to meet others young people in my neighborhood, who showed prejudice, practicing bullying to disabled people, people of color and others considered outsiders. They used to hurt others with phrases as stab-wounds, particularly to queers, mocking of them about how they walk, they talking gestures, manners, and laughing with the most “funny” grotesque jokes about homosexual men and lesbians. In a short of a period of time, I decided to stop my personal enrolment with this homophobic group of neighbors, and I departed to find another type of friends.
Since my childhood, I have always tried to locate myself in an ethical and respectful environment and meeting people who respect people, avoiding any participation in bullying, neither against homosexuals. I knew it, in my inner-being that they are human like me, and worthy of the most kindly respect as any other being on this universe. Also, I do feel that they suffer so much under bullying and marginalization just because they are gay. This reality made me feel a sense of guilt for living in a place where the systematic bulling is practiced as if is “normal and natural” conduct.
When I met my wife, mother of my four children, I discovered her soul filled with compassion for everybody, no limits. After our wedding, we came to live in an apartment located in a building totally populated by homosexuals, citizens from different countries, races, and cultures. It was there that I learned how to be even more open-minded, as a couple and individually, for accepting all human being without prejudice, but inclusiveness.
Respect and gentleness were mutual in our sincere greetings, sharing food, and conversations with our entire queer neighborhood,.
During the years I was finishing my Bachelor’s Degree at the Biblical Latin American Seminary, I started to re-interpret my own theological and pastoral convictions about humanity and relationships. I was shocked to realize that I could not find condemnations for punishing “queer” people. Furthermore, I discovered that the word of God reaches and approaches everybody that is being oppressed. God’s word provides faith to those who are being persecuted or bullied.
God’s word provides liberation to everyone from the injustice tyranny that, structurally, includes homosexual’s systematic bullying, victims of homophobia and marginalization.
The systemic analysis of oppression that is at the heart of liberation theology is crucial to change the political, cultural and religious oppression under which so many groups labor.
The personal connection, however, is also crucial as it provides the bridge to solidarity across difference to help us from a large, and diverse movement to make change for justice and equality.