“I was so involved in this complex self-deception that a lot of queer people go through. I think I believed that no matter the pain or the sacrifice, God would reward me in due time,” Steph said.
Instead, at the age of 27, her world was “turned upside down” when she fell in love with a woman and was forced to confront her budding sexuality and religious doubts.
After separating from her husband, Steph took time to recalibrate. She landed a job teaching at a non-denominational evangelical Christian school.
She also wanted to be the representative of some of her students whom she knew to be homosexual and felt “invisible and excluded”.
Religious colleges and schools fire teachers who come out as homosexual. And they also have the legal right to exclude trans and gay children from schools.
Dr. Kare Gleeson
“Originally, it was mainly used against women. Women who have had children out of wedlock, as we used to say, are women who are in common-law relationships and were unmarried,” Dr Glesson said.
“There is absolutely no appetite among the majority of Australians for laws which are interpreted as extending the right of religious bodies to discriminate against LGBTI people,” Dr Gleeson said.
Fahimah speaking at a climate protest.
In thethe percentage of people identifying as Christian continued to decline, to 11.1 million (43.9% of respondents) from 12.2 million (52.1%) in 2016.
Fueled by migration, Sikhism, Hinduism and Islam have had growing popularity.
Fahimah – co-president of the Muslim Collective
Fahimah grew up in Malaysia, where around two-thirds of the population are Muslim.
When she moved to Australia at 21 to study architecture, she was exposed to different cultural backgrounds and faiths.
We affirm people of all gender and sexual beliefs and identities.
Today, Fahimah is the co-chair of the Muslim Collective, an inclusive Islamic group that believes in practicing a more progressive interpretation of Islam.
Fahimah at a climate rally.
“We affirm people of all gender and sexual beliefs and identities.”
Fahimah says “everyone has the potential to contribute to society, to contribute to their faith communities, and to achieve spiritual fulfillment, and that should go beyond your genitals.”