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Jamie Arpin-Ricci is an author & queer Christian activist, with more than 25 years experience living at the intersection of faith, sexuality, and justice.
(Banner art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

Every year during Pride month, it has become something of a tradition for my family and our neighbours family to attend events together with our kids. My neighbour and I both identify as bisexual/pansexual. We are also both married to opposite-sex partners. Often upon arriving my neighbour’s husband and I are walking together with my son, with our wives walking together with the little ones.

As we merge with the crowd, it is easy to see on the faces of those passing us that they presume we are a set of gay and lesbian couples. There are lots of smiles…

(photo Canva / artwork Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

As a published author, I have had to engage in most social media platforms to establish and grow my platform. It became even more critical over that last few years as I lost much of my platform (in evangelical Christian circles) for coming out as LGBTQ+ affirming, not to mention as a proud bisexual/pansexual man. Despite the challenges, I’ve managed to maintain a decent following.

Of course, we all know that social media changes like the weather. And as a middle-aged man, the growing influence of TikTok could not be ignored. Conventional wisdom was this was the medium of young…

(photo by Jacob Lund)

Whether it is concerning the current movements growing to resist racism in America and around the world, or whether it relates to my own advocacy on behalf of LGBTQ+ people (especially in the Christian community), a common theme comes up in conversation: a reminder that people (namely those subject to oppression) need to be patient and understanding because change takes time and that, in the end, justice will prevail. This is a common call for those who advocate for gradualism.

In this context, the term gradualism refers to the idea that social change comes as a result of slow and…

(photo by Emma Gossett / artwork by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

For many of us who are LGBTQ+ and Christian, there comes a time when we are forced to choose between who God created us to be and the communities that we called home for most of our lives. When this time came for me- when the church that had been my home for most of my life severed their ties with us- it was a crushing blow. It is bad enough to have one’s very personhood condemned as degenerate, but to be cut off from the deepest relationship of one’s life is like acid in the wound.

It would be…

(photo by Aaron Burden / art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

By the time we planted our church, Little Flowers Community, in 2009, the shift in my thinking around sexuality had already begun to get more pronounced. While I still generally held to the “traditional view” when pressed about it, I avoided that specific question a great deal. In truth, with planting a new church, my energy and focus were largely directed elsewhere.

In fact, even our church did not directly address the topic, with members who held “traditional views”, others holding an affirming view, and many not sure where they stood. Given that we had a few queer members in…

As the global COVID19 pandemic continues to ramp up, New York City has quickly become a hot-spot for rapid transmission and increasingly death as a result. The need for critical and expedient aid has never been higher for the city, prompting many organizations to rise to the occasion to lend a much-needed hand in this time of crisis.

One such group is Samaritan’s Purse, an evangelical Christian humanitarian organization, headed by Franklin Graham, son of the late preacher Billy Graham. Samaritan’s Purse valiantly rushed to NYC to set up an overflow field hospital in Central Park for the overrun Mount…

(photo by Gabriel / art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

(Content Warning: The following article contains mention of suicide.)

While I still held the so-called “traditional view” on marriage and sexuality when I married my wife, my own deeply painful experiences as a bisexual man working in full-time Christian ministry tempered how I engaged the topic. Where others were focusing on the need to stand by “Biblical absolutes” with respect to this (and any) subject, my awareness of the harm being done to LGBTQ2S+ people by the church shifted my attention in another direction.

Instead of being a champion for orthodoxy, guarding against the ever-present risk of the notorious “slippery…

(graphic by Peggy Marco / design by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

Like many people settling into their twenties, as life on my own slowly became the norm, I started considering the possibility of marriage. Being a good evangelical Christian- newly inducted into ministry as a “full-time missionary” for Youth With A Mission (YWAM)- their general expectation was that marriage would be in my near future. It’s no coincidence that YWAM often got dubbed “Young Women After Men” or “Young Wolves After Maidens”.

However, given my on-going “struggle with same-sex attraction” (coded language for what I would later learn was my bisexuality), I was uncertain how to proceed with my expected pursuit…

(photo by Sharon Christina Rørvik / art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

By the time I was in my mid-twenties, established in my administrative job at the Christian organization, Youth With A Mission (YWAM), I had worked hard to build protective walls around my bisexuality (which I still thought of in terms of being “only kind of gay”). I had intentionally gained an unhealthy amount of weight to make myself unattractive to other men, carving out a space in the Christian world as someone “battling the strongholds” of my “sin nature”. As destructive as it was, it was the only strategy I had for protecting myself from the fear, shame, and rejection…

(photo by Christian Buehner / art by Jamie Arpin-Ricci)

I was only eighteen years old when I decided to go into full-time Christian ministry. Having just completed my Discipleship Training School (DTS) with Youth With A Mission (YWAM) on my eighteenth birthday, I was eligible to apply to be on full-time staff with the organization. I did not hesitate to do so, despite some of the negative experiences I had gone through relating to my sexuality. I had a deep sense of calling and believed this was the place I needed to be, so I was willing to take the bad with the good.

That is one of the…

Jamie Arpin-Ricci

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