Gender & Sexuality Sexuality Being LGBTQ+ and Religious If you come from a religious background, coming out can be particularly hard, and might even cause an internal conflict between your LGBTQ+ and religious identities. While many LGBTQ+ people have complicated relationships with religion and stray away from it after coming out, there are also lots of LGBTQ+ people that do continue to practice their religion. The myth that all people within the community have to be nonreligious or atheist can be harmful to other LGBTQ+ people who connect very deeply with their religious identity. It is unfortunately not uncommon for religious spaces to shun or reject people after coming out, sometimes forcing LGBTQ+ people out of the space entirely. The good news is that there are religious communities that are welcoming of the LGBTQ+ community! There are great resources for people of all religions, and Stonewall has a great list of resources across the UK. Below are some more LGBTQ+ friendly religious resources. KeshetUK KeshetUK offers support and resources to LGBT Jewish people. They provide education through inclusion training and visits to Jewish school, synagogues, and work with other Jewish organizations. They also offer links to other LGBT resources in the UK, and include the work they do with synagogues on their page as well. OneBodyOneFaith OneBodyOneFaith is a Christian organization aiming to advance Christianity and education for the public about LGBT issues. They also offer a resource map to connect LGBT Christians with churches and communities in their area. Imaan Imaan is the UK’s leading LGBTQ Muslim charity. Imaan offers information about being LGBTQ as stated in the Qur’an, and information for parents of LGBT Q children. They also offer a forum for LGBTQ Muslims to seek help, advice, and engage with one another. Galva-108 Galva-108 is an international Vaishnava and Hindu organization aiming to end bigotry against LGBT people within their religious communities. They offer advice on how to select a temple, a guru, and other ways to maintain connection with your religious identity. Sarbat Sarbat addresses LGBT issues from a Sikh religious perspective. They provide a list of LGBT resources, and have hosted events in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, New York, Leicester, and Bradford. They host workshops and support groups for LGBT Sikhs. Brighton Buddhist Centre Brighton Buddhist Centre is not an exclusively LGBTQ organization, but offers a wide variety of events and workshops around health, mindfulness, and meditation, as well as Buddhist retreats. They also offer meditation courses specifically for gay, bisexual, trans, and queer Buddhist men. West London Buddhist Centre West London Buddhist Centre is also not exclusively LGBTQ, but offers retreats, therapies, mindfulness, arts, and other resources. They offer medication courses specifically for lesbian, bisexual, trans, and queer Buddhist women and anyone with a fluid gender identity. What Next? MORE READING For more about religion and LGBTQ+ issues, check out Religion + gay sex = guilt?. SUPPORT If you would like to speak with someone about LGBTQ+ issues, call Switchboard at 0300 330 0630 between 10am-10pm, email [email protected], or access their web text chat here. If you would like to speak to someone about coming out, family problems, sexual health, or training for your company or provider, contact Support U at 0118 321 9111. Check out our OutLife Forums for a safe and non-judgmental space where LGBTQ+ people can talk to one another about their issues and life experience.