Podcast 69: Teen Comes out as Christian to Gay Parents (Caleb Kaltenbach)

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We hear a particular narrative over and over: “Gay teen courageously comes out to Christian parents and faces consequences.” This is the hero’s journey of the early 21st century. From gay pride marches to hit songs to movies and TV shows, this story is ubiquitous in our culture. For example, I used to listen to the Moth podcast and heard story after story championing the gay lifestyle and supporting the choice to live “out and proud.” In the hundreds of stories I listened to, not once did I ever hear a story of someone who came to Christ, even though it is a much more common occurrence. It’s hard not to absorb the impression that LGBTQ folks are courageous and tolerant while Christians, especially bible-believing ones, are repressive and unloving. However, could it be that there’s an alternative narrative that few are hearing?

Caleb Katenbach has an interesting story. He grew up with two moms and learned to hate Christians. However, when he unexpectedly became a Christian in high school, he had to “come out of the closet” to his moms. Were they supportive? Did they embrace his new sense of identity? Did they accept him for following his heart? No! They kicked him out and expressed intolerance. Of course, his story doesn’t end there. Listen to this fine interview between Darrell Bock and Caleb Kaltenbach to learn both how we as Christians need to repent as well a how we can reach the LGBTQ community.

Notes and Links:

  • Caleb Kaltenbach’s book, Messy Grace: How a Pastor with Gay Parents Learned to Love Others Without Sacrificing Conviction, is available here
  • Thanks to Darrel Bock for persmission to replay this episode. Check out his stimulating podcast, “The Table,” here
  • Intro music: “District Four” by Kevin MacLeod.  Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License.


2 thoughts on “Podcast 69: Teen Comes out as Christian to Gay Parents (Caleb Kaltenbach)

  • This was very helpful information, thank you. We come across this subject more and more as we speak to people. Yes, of course, it is a sin – the Bible says. But as brought out it is not just a question of quoting Leviticus, Corinthians, Romans – there is more to it than that. Therefore in order to show love to our fellow man and help people to come to Christ, we must prepare seriously how to achieve this in our everyday ministry. If we are going to help people, then we need to listen to them.

    “Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you.” 1 Tim 4:16

  • Great interview with very helpful, practical insight into ministry, the heart of church policy, and reaching out to people with a loving, hearing heart. Thank you for sharing this with us

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