Soccer star Abby Wambach and the traumatic choice between being gay and the Church

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Be a believer or be gay: Abby Wambach, 40, American football star, spoke about the conflict between religion and homosexuality and her difficult experience in podcast of his wife, Glennon Doyle. A trauma that, gradually, is overcoming, thanks also to his partner.

“The first memories I have of the church are actually very beautiful,” he says. “I remember the music. I remember I loved singing. But there was a feeling… like an overwhelming sense of awareness of who I was inside and, at the same time, who the church expected me to be.

And those two things didn’t correspond. “

Wambach remembers telling her friend from the church that she was a lesbian when they were both teenagers. Her friend’s reaction reinforced Wambach’s insecurity. “Unfortunately, we stopped being friends after this moment,” she explained. “I realized I had a choice to make. IS I had to choose me or God: I chose myself ».

This decision, however, was not an easy one. Abby loved the church community and felt “that she was a part of something.” But she also knew that something had hurt her and that she had to protect herself. “I had to turn my back on the church, and what I thought was God, for self-preservation, ”he said. «It was almost a: ‘If you don’t accept me, then fuck you’».

When he met Doyle, Wambach was an atheist. But during the relationship, the way the footballer saw God and religion changed: his wife helped her to reflect on closeness between Jesus and prostitutes, lepers, people in difficulty. “He approached those people, those wounded, marginalized, pushed to the limit, and walked with them. I like this part: he gathered them all and ate with them. ‘

Doyle also admitted he struggled. He felt that Jesus was something different from the church, and this difference had a huge impact on LGBTQ people. “If you are part of an organization – a family, a group of friends, a church – that is becoming homophobic, you have three choices,” Doyle said. “You can shut up, and that means you agree. This means that you are homophobic. And that this is what you are passing on to your children. This is your decision. ‘ The other choices, he added, are either to fight the ideas of that organization or to abandon it. Doyle and Wambach explain that leaving the church is not leaving God. “The church is not God. And if you are asked to make a choice between love and God, you better think about it. This is a wrong choice: God is love ».

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