Bishop S.F. Makalani-Mahee
Minister. Performing Artist. Community Organizer
One of the blessings I receive from attending conferences such as Philly Trans Health is the intentional creation of space for dialogue, dialogue that not shares experience, strength, and hope; but dialogue that challenges our thoughts, assumptions, and bias. Here the keynotes addresses serve as family gathering/meeting where we affirm one another and remind each other we are not alone; discuss how to function more healthily as a family, and we can hold each other accountable in love.
I was sitting in a workshop where a trans woman of color was cautioning us to have the conversations that shines a light on our shame so that our youth know we haven’t always been who we are today, and there were times when we made choices (for whatever the reason maybe) that we were not always proud of. However, we realize that we don’t have to carry the shame of those choices with us for the rest of our lives. When we engage each other in conversations, and ask each other the hard questions we create a space of truth, trust, respect, and non-judgment.
I left that session asking myself “Where am I not being honest, about owning my own shame based experiences?” This was a hard question that I would not have been able to ask myself had there not been the intentional creation of the space to have conversations that ask the hard questions, and the strength, boldness, and courage of people to show up and share their shame spoken in truth that becomes warrior marks and the bridges to our destiny.
I also feel that these conversations and asking the hard questions provide a lifeline for those of us who live in places where there is not large trans communities, or visible people of color communities, or resources for them; and as such there is not an ongoing dialogue that addresses living in a world impacted by micro-aggression, and confronting an oppressive white supremacist –capitalist-patriarchy that doesn’t want us to engage with or empower each other; which really makes me think that having conversation and asking the hard questions may be one of the most revolutionary things we can do.
Continue To Walk In The Light, Redefine Your Faith, and Remember It’s All The Rhythm.