Being LGBTQ+ and Glorious in God’s Sight

Sr. Donna McGartland

Today’s post is from guest contributor Sr. Donna McGartland. Sr. Donna is on the Leadership Team of the Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities. She is also one of the authors in Love Tenderly: Sacred Stories of Lesbian and Queer Religious published by New Ways Ministry.

Today’s liturgical readings for the 2nd Sunday of Ordinary Time can be found here.

God speaks through the prophet, Isaiah: “I formed you from the womb to be my servant. I call you back to me and gather you in my embrace.” And I respond, “I am made glorious in God’s sight and God is now my strength!” (Is 49:5, paraphrased)

“It is too little,” says God, “for you to be my servant, to raise up and restore the survivors; I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”  (Is 49:6, paraphrased)

These are words that all of us always want to hear, especially those who have been hurt or excluded by others because of who we were created to be, such as those of us in the LGBTQ+ community.

The message is worth repeating: God formed us in the womb and made us who we are. We are glorious in God’s sight!!  No one can call us less for we are invited to dwell in God’s embrace. We are strengthened by this reality.

Many times throughout our lives we heard another message that says we are not enough. We were shamed into believing that we are flawed. This isn’t from God. Isaiah is clear about this and calls us to recognize that:

1. We are made glorious! God formed us as we are. Paul says that we are holy! Our very existence is precious in God’s sight.

2. God’s strength is always within us! This strength calls us to raise up others and to restore their relationship with God. Before we can do that, we must believe that God’s strength will heal us, raise us up and restore us to right relationship with God and ourselves.

3. We are called to be a light for others and to enable them to embrace this same reality of God’s immense love for each of us.

WOW!! God loved us from our conception. Isaiah cannot be any clearer. We are made Glorious in God’s sight.

Sit in that reality now. Feel God’s power and love forming you in the womb and creating you to be the person you are.  Hear God call you by your name.

“(Insert God’s name for you), you are made glorious!

It is I who form you as you are.

You are my Beloved. You are Holy!

I am with you and always will be.

I will strengthen you. I love you!”

Feel God’s love flow over you and transform all the voices within that are contrary to God’s loving presence.

You are God’s Beloved, made in God’s image and likeness.

May you be strengthened in this Truth. May you radiate this Light to others.

Sr. Donna McGartland, January 15, 2023

7 replies
  1. Loras Michel
    Loras Michel says:

    What a beautiful essay, Sr. Donna. I’m in the process of reading Rhonda Byrne’s latest book — A Masterclass of her teachings. I am going to photocopy this magnificent article and place it at the very front of Rhonda’s book. The Law of Attraction at work.

    For so often, the Good News of who we are, like The Secret book, needs to be affirmed in our own subconscious until we genuinely and totally believe who we really are, and then offered as a light to everyone we meet who wishes to receive. As that is realized, we become co-creators with God’s Truth and Love as the Beloved. Feeling good is its own reward and no negative force can take that very essence from us.

    Again, bless you Sr. Donna for bringing all this to mind. I really needed some confirmation on what I have been reflecting on today, and you became that light. Namaste.

  2. Cheryl A Rogers
    Cheryl A Rogers says:

    Thank you, Sr. Donna, well said and much needed for me to hear this morning. Love is love and because I am created in Love, through Love and because of Love, I have always wondered why traditional institutions in power including the Catholic Church have felt that only they have the true “light of love’ in the world and how to relate with another person. That only ‘their’ love is ‘good and holy’. Could it be that we were created in Love to be ‘lights in a dark world’ which has years upon years, judged incorrectly and fearfully the true way of love and that is just what we in the LBGTQ community were created to brighten up with Jesus who is ‘the way, the truth, and the light’. Is it not possible that all the condemning of me and my love as Jesus did with the woman to be stoned, drawing a line in the sand around her and saying, ‘you who are without sin cast the first stone’ and no one did. Well, the line is drawn around us today and why oh why isn’t this message still adhered to? I struggle with this and would appreciate a response from anyone as I continue to wrestle not with leaving Christ but with leaving the Church institution which continues to promote injustice and harm to us despite Jesus welcoming us all. I am weary with living in a church leadership which is not listening to Jesus as is so much needed in our world today. Years ago, when at Kirkridge I remember St. Theresa Kane stunning me and all in conference/retreat there saying that ‘even in Rome evil exists.’ Papa Francis is against some very powerful men in the cloth. I pray they leave their comfort postures and open up to hear the Word once again for the entire church and world faith community. Continue your words Sr. Donna they are like a cool stream of water in an arrid desert.

    • Loras Michel
      Loras Michel says:

      You speak from the heart Cheryl, while many powerful men of the cloth are like Tin Woodman in The Wizard of Oz. Following ones dream and paying no mind to these folks brings the most satisfaction and change in ourselves as well. A new world is coming — beautiful vibrant faces appearing the Catholic Church — keep believing and it will be so. 🙂

      • Cheryl Rogers
        Cheryl Rogers says:

        Thank you Loras for your reply to my comment and I appreciated the Tin Man analogy. Keep sharing your insightfulness with all of us. The energy and synergy of our collective unity in Faith is truly the basis of progress and hope for a better world and better Church. Namaste soul-sister. All blessings be!

  3. Thomas Deely
    Thomas Deely says:

    Sister Donna
    your reflection this morning Has given one warmth to my heart on this day in a very cold new Smyrna Beach ..35° but my heart is warmer because of your very positive reflection about How ALL …Of us have been created gloriously in God’s image


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