Rosaria Butterfield on LGBTQ Theology and Hospitality as Evangelism

Rosaria Butterfield was a tenured English professor at Syracuse University, happily partnered to another woman, and a leading thinker in queer studies. All of this changed when a Christian couple welcomed her into their lives, slowly sharing the gospel through inclusive hospitality. She’s now a pastor’s wife in North Carolina and mother to four adopted children.

In this episode, Rosaria recounts her story as an unlikely convert and discusses how Christians can begin engaging their lost friends and neighbors—even the ones we’re afraid to approach—in a more gospel-centered way through regularly practiced radical hospitality.

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  • Ted Bates says:

    Hi. When I came to Jesus, I was 19 years old. I was forced to drop out of UC Santa Cruz with a severe mental breakdown. I could not find my identity in anything. After dropping out of college I was very close to taking my life. But at the same time I began experiencing incredible coincidences and meeting Christians and learning about Christianity and I finally came. I was excited about Jesus and finally knew that my identity was and is hid in Him. I picked up a man with his bicycle and gave him a ride home. He told me that he was gay and with my knew faith I was eager to share Jesus with him. We became friends and I tried to show him Christian love without approving of his sexual identity. I tried to be a good friend to him for 10 to 15 years. I really cared about him. He was very special and a gifted artist and writer. His yard was like a jungle that he planted. I tried to be a friend and I truly valued him. I finally moved up north to the mountains. After being up north for 2 1/2 years, I came down to put my dog to sleep. I had a grave plot already in a pet cemetery. And I ran into him at a store. I don’t think he was very excited to run into me. Before I went back up north, I left a pound of Sees Candy by his gate with a little drawing of a stick figure with his hands stretched out as on a cross with a smile. He loved chocolate. It was my little feeble attempt to show him Christian friendship and acceptance. Years later I learned he had died in his home. He was in his middle sixties about the age I am now. I don’t think I accomplished the Christian friendship I attempted to show him, but I simply tried to show him Christian love although I really don’t think I succeeded at it. I tried.

    • Corum Hughes says:

      Thanks for sharing your story with us, Ted. I believe showing each other the unconditional love of a brother/sister or neighbor is a worthy way to follow Jesus. I pray your friend saw that in your heart throughout your friendship.

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