Last year, while serving as a missionary
to college campuses in Chile, I came
out of the closet and was subsequently
asked to leave ministry.   Since then
I've engaged in those nerve-wracking
discussions in which I've tried my
hardest to learn how to hold my head
up and without shame speak clearly to
the fact that I believe God loves me just
the way I am. I've emailed, written
letters, or spoken with former students,
bosses and colleagues, my father and
even my pastor. Each time I explained
myself, I honed a little bit better a
description of who I am. A few months
ago, I wrote a letter to one of my best
friends in which I summarized my
journey thus far as a queer Christian.  
The following excerpts are from that
letter.
“I have other sheep that are not of this
fold.  I must bring them in also.”  
John 10:16
__________________________________________

Emmanuel Kamau (known as "Aunty
Ivy" throughout Africa), founder
(1997) and director of Ishtar MSM,
an HIV/AIDS prevention organization
that works among gay men, has
invited
Steve Parelli and Jose Ortiz
of Other Sheep to come to
Nairobi,
Kenya, this summer (July and
August 2007) to conduct "safe
space" groups that will focus on
instruction and discussion on issues
and interests pertaining to
homosexuality.

A curriculum will be used that
addresses homosexuality as it
relates to religion, society, family
members, the social sciences and
psychology, and human rights.   
Targeted participants will be the
LGBT community, their parents and
friends, and any interested party.  
Three different locations have been
chosen in Nairobi for weekly
meeting places in order to reach a
wider range of people within the
city.  The groups will run for four
weeks.  Kamau, Parelli and Ortiz will
use the time between classes to
meet and connect with individuals.  
It is hoped that a permanent
pro-active group will grow out of
these meetings and will continue to
meet on a regular basis creating
fellowship and addressing the areas
of need particular to the group and
the region.

Other Sheep is currently seeking
donors to help with the Kenya
Project Summer 2007 costs.  
Financial gifts can conveniently be
made with credit cards on the
website at
www.othersheepexecsite.com.  
Personal checks can be sent
directly to Other Sheep, c/o Gordon
I. Herzog,, 16768 Old Jamestown
Rd. Florissant, MO 63034.  Other
Sheep is a 501 (c) (3) tax exempt
organization.  Donors will receive a
receipt for their contributions.  
Emmanuel Kamau, as director of
Ishtar MSM (men who have sex
with men) has served on UN and
state advisory councils and is an
international speaker.  

Emmanuel Kamau recently
became interested in Other Sheep
through contact with Other
Sheep's New York City committee
that works to distribute throughout
Africa the book
The Children Are
Free:  Reexamining the Biblical
Evidence on Same-sex
Relationships, co-authored by
Rev. Jeff  Miner and John Tyler
Connoley.

Kamau, while visiting family in the
United States, traveled to New
York City in March of 2007 and for
eleven days resided in the home of
Steve Parelli and Jose Ortiz during
which time he met twice with the
NYC Other Sheep committee to
discuss and plan for
Other
Sheep's 2007 summer work in
Nairobi with Ishtar MSM.
Other Sheep Requests
Books for Marriage
Equality NY

Michael Sabatino,
Communications Director for
Marriage Equality NY,  was first
introduced to the book
The
Children Are Free upon meeting
Steve Parelli, Executive Director of
Other Sheep, at the June 2006
Westchester County Interfaith
Pride Service,  New York.  
Sabatino saw the potential in using
the book with New York State
Legislators.   "The first book we
handed out [to a New York State
Legislator] resulted in a
conversion from an undecided
vote to becoming a co-sponsor,"
Sabatino says.  

Recently, Sabatino asked Other
Sheep to make a donation of 25
copies for distribution to NY State
legislators.  Other Sheep, on
behalf of Marriage Equality NY,
asked Rev. Jeff Miner of Jesus
MCC, Indianapolis, Indiana, to
make the donation to which he
agreed.  Sabatino writes:  
"Marriage Equality, as part of their
education program, has been
including a copy of The Children
Are Free in the information
package they present to New York
State Legislators that have not
committed to Marriage Equality."  
Sabatino says Marriage Equality
will be able to "continue this
program thanks to the generosity
of Jeff Miner who has donated 25
copies of the book."   He also
thanks Other Sheep for their part
as facilitator.
Other Sheep Theologian Speaks in Brazil

Rev. Dr. Thomas Hanks speaks
in Methodist and Lutheran institutions in Porto Alegre, Belo
Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro, all cities in Brazil, May 12-22.  Watch
for an article on Hanks' trip in the Other Sheep Summer Report.
____________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
Andrew K. T. Yip, in the April 6,
2007, "Higher Education
Supplement" of The London Times,
had this to say about the fall 2006
publication of The Queer Bible
Commentary:  "This volume . . .
attempts to undo the harm . . .
perpetrated and sustained by
traditional theology that for a long
time was accepted as the exclusive
truth about the Bible, Christianity and
humanity. Such transgressive
theology argues that theology, far
from being objective and universal, is
gendered, racialised, classed and
"sexualized" (privileges heterosexual
experiences) - an ideological
construct infused with power. There
is no denying that the flourishing of
such theology has given a voice to
Christians whose lived experiences
and viewpoints were traditionally
excluded.

"Written from a queer standpoint, this
much welcomed commentary . . .
offers illuminating contributions from
a team of internationally renowned
theologians, biblical scholars and
religious practitioners covering every
book/text in the Bible."

Rev. Dr. Thomas Hanks, Other Sheep
Theologian and Director of  Mission, authored
the commentary on Romans and Hebrews in
The Queer Bible Commentary."
Upon entering a home in East Africa, one is greeted with the words
karibu kwetu, which means "welcome to our place."  I had heard that
greeting a thousand times and more while ministering in Tanzania and
Kenya.  I had worked in East Africa for twenty years.  From 1968-1985,
I had served as pastoral minister working with adults and youth in
Tanzania.  Returning in 1997, I did pastoral work in Nairobi, Kenya, until
2000 and was, during this time, a visiting lecturer at Tangaza College
(Catholic University of Eastern Africa).
Now, much to my amazement and surprise, standing at my apartment
door in the Bronx, New York, on a March evening in 2007, was a young
Kenyan man whom I greeted with the words karibu nyumbani, "welcome
to my house."  What joy I felt in this unexpected visit.
My Kenyan visitor was
Emmanuel Kamau, founder and director of Ishtar
MSM (men who have sex with men), Nairobi, Kenya.  He was
accompanied by Steve Parelli and Jose Ortiz of Other Sheep and Perry
Brass, gay writer and published author.
I had prepared Irish stew in honor of St. Patrick's Day, now only a
couple days past. Around our evening meal, we visited.  We learned
about Ishtar MSM, an organization that works in cooperation with
government agencies to prevent HIV infections and assist those living
with AIDS, and that Ishtar MSM does so with the purpose of helping
Africans identify and accept their gay orientation.
Yes, to accept their gay orientation.  That is indeed a timely ministry.  
During the twenty years I lived in Africa, I constantly heard the party line
There are no gays in Africa and Where ever there may be a
homosexual relationship, it is because foreigners have brought it to
Africa; it was never a part of African identity or customs. That was the
party line.  Yet somehow I knew this was not the case and from time to
time I heard of gay Africans and of their own queer tribal words that
harked back to a time before foreign influence.  
Eventually I met some Africans in person who identified themselves as   
 
Continued below on page 4 "Kenyan visitor Received in the Bronx by Doherty"
Photo at Right:
 Left to Right:  
Steve Parelli,
Emmanuel
Kamau,
Father Donald
Doherty
, and
Jose Ortiz.  
Father Doherty, after 20 years of ministry in East    
Africa, receives Kenyan visitor in his Bronx home
The following first person story was written by Father Doherty for Other
Sheep News
_________________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
Emmanuel Kamau
distributes
The
Children Are Free

and Other Sheep
material at
conference in
Cambodia

Other Sheep, through the
person of
Emmanuel
Kamau, delivered packets
of material to 30
participants at an
international sex workers
conference held in
Cambodia, April 2-4, 2007,
where Emmanuel was a
featured speaker.

Emmanuel says, "I
facilitated two sessions.  In
the first session, we
addressed the question
Who are our allies?  In this
session, when we asked the
question What do we want
our allies to do for us at the
local, regional and
international level, I
introduced Other Sheep
and distributed the packets.
 I told them that in every
human being there is a
vacuum that needs to be
filled with God and so we
need to have some
knowledge of religion so
that we can meet the
spiritual needs of those
members who are sex
workers and Christian."

The packets contained the
book
The Children Are
Free and literature on Other
Sheep including Other
Sheep's January-March
2007 Winter Report.  
Copies of the book The
Children Are Free were
provided by Jesus MCC of
Indianapolis, Indiana.

Emmanuel says, "Before the
conference was over, I
heard a few comments that
so far the book was great."  
Emmanuel is founder
(1997) and director of Ishtar
MSM, Kenya, East Africa.
Dear  Jack,

I think there are two main paths that people take when wondering about
challenging the sinfulness of homosexuality . . . .  One is to pick apart each
individual relevant verse, trying to find other definitions and exegeses and
commentaries and bits of church history that will allow you to distinguish
another possible interpretation.  

The other major path when talking about this issue is to go the opposite
direction — you simply begin to drift further away from trusting the scripture
at all.   …  Is it a book you want me to read because it’s inerrant or despite
its errancy?  Should I receive it with divine authority, as a merely human
creation, or something in between?  

The conclusion I have reached that homosexuality is not sinful is based on
personal experience. . . .  I’m well aware that in evangelical circles, our
experience, our ideas, our heart is not to be trusted.  And I understand this.  

But just consider this for a moment: my entire walk with God, from conversion
to becoming a campus pastor to witnessing to serving in church to going to
Chile to my relationships with other Christians, all of it, has been based on
what I think God has said to me, on what I believe are my experiences with
Him.  So why should I start to doubt that now?  Either I consider the fact that
the Holy Spirit is still speaking to me, crazy as the particular idea may sound,
or I need to question everything I’ve ever talked about with Him.  I see no
reason to do the latter.

So that’s that.  Because of my personal experiences, and my ongoing and
on-growing relationship with God, I believe I am not in sin.  

I will continue to study in the other two paths, seeking the exact meaning of
the relevant passages and the exact character of the Bible itself, but I no
longer see those studies as having the potential to derail my faith or my life.
Kathryn Griess, right in photo, was field
staff for an international evangelical
campus ministry in Chile up until May,
2006.  She now lives with her wife,
Esther, at left in photo, in Buenos Aires.  
Griess first found out about Other
Sheep and Rev. Dr. Thomas Hanks  
"during a desperate internet search."
For the complete, unabridged text of Kati's letter to Jack go to
http://www.othersheepexecsite.com/Paraguay_A_New_Lesbian_Couple.html
Continued from page 2
Kenyan visitor Received
in the Bronx by Father
Doherty

gay but could never publicly
present themselves as such. To
be a gay African was a very
lonely existence for sure. There
were never any articles in the
papers or magazines about
them. There were no television
programs about gay
characters.  There were no
activists and no support
networks that I knew of.  
So when the phone call came
from Steve Parelli that he was
expecting a visitor from Nairobi
who was gay and out and proud
and an activist, well I just had to
see this person and hear his
own personal testimony for
myself.  Together the five of us
sat in my high rise Bronx
apartment overlooking the
Throgs Neck bridge – two
Protestants, a Jew, and two
Catholics, all from different
ethnic backgrounds – listening
with delight to our guest,
Emmanuel, as he spoke about
his wonderful work of advocacy,
and of how he personally
relates to gays with an essential
element of spirituality, which
especially excited me.  
Fr. Donald Doherty, M.M.  
Father Doherty is a member of
Other Sheep Africa Advisory
Board and is a member of the
Other Sheep NYC Committee to
Bring to Africa the Book
The
Children Are Free
Jesus MCC and Other Sheep to
Publish Book in Spanish
The Children Are Free: Reexamining the Biblical Evidence on Same-Sex
Relationships by Jeff Miner and John Tyler Connoley is soon to be
published in Spanish as a joint project by Jesus Metropolitan Community
Church, Indianapolis, Indiana and Other Sheep.
Tom Hanks, Other Sheep
theologian and director of
mission, selected the
translators and oversaw the
translation work in Buenos
Aires.   With members of
CEGLA, a local gay
Christian fellowship, Tom
Hanks reviewed the
translation work for style and
readability as they studied
the concepts of the book
together.

Editorial Epifania, a religious
publishing house in Buenos
Aires, will publish the
Spanish translation.  
Editorial Epifania, not
officially a part of Other
Sheep, has strong ties with
Other Sheep.  With financial
help through Other Sheep,
Nestor Saporiti and Carlos
Gasparini, were able to
found Editorial Epifania.  In
2004, Editorial Epifania
published Other Sheep's
Spanish translation of
Henri's Mantle: 100
Mediations on Nouwen's
Legacy.
Marcelo Saenz, above right,  of
CEGLA discusses the  book and
translation with Tom Hanks,
Buenos Aires, July 2006
Thomas Hanks to Present
Paper on Romans 1 at SBL
in November

Thomas Hanks will present a paper on
Romans 1:16-2:16 in Robert Jewett's
new commentary at the Society of
Biblical Literature, meeting in San
Diego, CA, Nov 17-20.  A first draft is
available on line at
www.fundotrasovejas.org.ar. The paper
will compare Jewett's conclusions with
those of Robert Gagnon in his two
books and numerous website articles.
Other Sheep resource materials can be found at www.othersheep.org,
www.fundotrasovejas.org.ar  and www.othersheepexecite.com and may be
freely copied and reprinted.  Copied materials should indicate their source and
be distributed free of charge. For address removal, correction or addition,
contact
Steve Parelli, Executive Director, at sparelli2002@yhaoo.com or by direct
mail at 2962 Decatur Ave. 5D, Bronx, NY 10458. Home/Business Phone:  
718-360-0884
Financial gifts may be sent to Other Sheep
c/o Gordon I. Herzog
16768 Old Jamestown Rd.,
Florissant, MO 63034
email:  GIHerzog@othersheep.org

Financial gifts to the Kenya Project may be
made by credit card through PayPal
at www.othersheepexecsite.com
____________________________
_____________________
____________________________
Other Sheep News is published quarterly by Other Sheep and is compiled and edited by Steve Parelli.  John Doner
is assistant editor.  Other Sheep is Multicultural Ministries with Sexual Minorities, working world wide in an
ever-expanding variety of languages, cultures and LGBT concerns, to share the good news that God loves all gay,
lesbian bisexual and transgendered persons just as they are and calls them into inclusive, gay-affirming, Christian
communities.
                      I would love to continue the vital work
                            of  Other Sheep  by donating…

__$500.00     __$250.00     __$100.00    __ $50.00    Other $_______

Please designate my gift for the following fund(s):

$___________  General Fund

$___________  Whitehall Memorial Fund     (Latin American Ministries)

$___________   Tom Hanks Buenos Aires Ministry Fund

$___________   Steve  and Jose’s Kenya Project Summer 2007
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