Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Queer Nativity 5: Matthew and Joseph are pregnant

“Matthew and Joseph are Pregnant” by Andrew Craig Williams

Christmas is about a miraculous pregnancy: a baby born to a virgin. If God can do that, then why not make a man pregnant? Andrew Craig Williams envisions a man carrying the Christ child in his womb as the LGBT Nativity series continues at the Jesus in Love Blog.

A series of queer manger scenes are being posted here before Christmas to reimagine the Holy Family in liberating, loving new ways.

Williams is an artist based in Wales who blogs at andrewcraigwilliams.blogspot.com. Look closely and you will see a baby curled up in fetal position inside the belly of a man, while his male partner stands lovingly behind him. The gay couple will be raising the baby Jesus together.

Williams is re-imagining the night the angel visits Joseph to tell him Mary is pregnant. In Williams version, Joseph’s partner is not Mary, but a man named Matthew. “Which one is Joseph? It doesn't matter - the couple will raise the new baby Jesus as a pair, and that's what's important,” Williams says.

The nudity suggests that the gay partners stand naked before God, ready like Mary was to say, “Let it be done unto me according to Your will.” The angel is not visible, but can be inferred from the light and the facial expressions of awe and joy. Stripped of clothing, they could come from any place or time, including our own. It’s especially wonderful that they are black men, because the love between people of color is too often denigrated in mainstream culture.

“Families are made and kept together with love, and I believe that all families should be celebrated,” explains.

Williams’ original image with full frontal nudity can be seen at this link on his blog. The image posted at Jesus in Love is adapted for general audiences. He created it in the same style as some digital art that he did for the Shout LGBT Festival in Birmingham, England, two years ago. The images were projected onto various landmark buildings in the city.

Click here to view the whole 2011 Queer Nativity series.

Click the following headlines to see other images in the Queer Nativity series:

Queer Nativity 1: Manger scene as gay adoption party

“Blaine and Patrick's Adoption Party 1” by Baub Alred

The image highlights the radical nature of Christ’s birth in two ways -- by presenting his parents as an inter-racial couple as well as a same-sex couple.

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“Adam and Steve, the Gay Shepherd Couple” by Archbishop Mark Shirilau

Some of the shepherds in Bethlehem on the first Christmas must have felt same-sex attractions... An outdoor light-up Nativity scene.

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Queer Nativity 3: No room at the manger for LGBT people

“Nativity Bouncer” by Jon Trouten

There was no room at the inn for the Holy Family, and there is no room in many churches today for LGBT people who want to get closer to Jesus.
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LGBTQ Nativity 4: Queer Magi visit Mary, Josephine and Jesus

“Queer Nativity” by Marie-Louise Thurton

Three queer Magi bring gifts to Mary, Josephine and baby Jesus in a Nativity scene sculpted by Marie-Louise Thurton. Instead of the traditional three kings, her Magi are a drag king, a drag nun and a LGBTQ-rights activist.
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For more about the lesbian and gay Nativity scenes, see our previous posts:

Gay and lesbian nativity scenes show love makes a family
(My reflection on how and why I started doing queer manger scenes)

Conservatives attack our lesbian and gay Nativity scenes

Video: Gay and lesbian manger scenes show love makes a family

Gay and lesbian Nativity cards

Keep coming back for more queer Nativity scenes now through Christmas at the Jesus in Love Blog !
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