The headline reads Conference on Gays Divides Family.

Did the Love Won Out conference divide this highlighted family?

Not really.

What divides Brenda and Brandon Meredith — a mother and son — has little directly to do with a conference held at a church building in Atlanta, although Brenda did go to the Love Won Out conference, and Brandon did go to the Truth Wins Out protest.

The article read, with regards to the mother:

“We’re helping to equip her with how to respond in a Christian way to her son,” said Melissa Fryrear, director of gender issues for Focus on the Family. “She doesn’t have to forfeit what she believes about Biblical sexuality but certainly still be in a loving relationship with her son. That’s what’s most important.”

“I love him,” Brenda Meredith said. “I love him unconditionally, no matter what he does. It’s not that I like what he does, but I love him.”

With regards to the son, the article read:

…He insisted he doesn’t want to change and believes the conference in Woodstock sent the wrong message.

So far, he has not convinced his mom. But he said, “We still do love each other.”

Perhaps the Love Won Out conference may have been the most recent location this mother and son were divided. but it isn’t where they’re divided.

The where of their divide perhaps is more broadly found in the conservative religious conviction that a person who has same-sex attractions has a mutable condition, and more precisely found within Brandon’s conservative religious Mom’s feeling her son should change his sexual orientation to a heterosexual one.

When I think about my relationship with my own Orthodox Christian Mom, it’s really clear to me that a place is just a place. My Mom’s and my divide over my gender identity, like the Meredith family’s mother and son divide over his sexual orientation, seems to have little to do with location.

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