Tag Archives: Pride Parade

Pride is marching in your first Pride Parade

24 Aug

Several years ago, I had the chance to walk in my first Pride Parade in Ottawa with a friend. However, fear controlled me and I wasn’t ready to be involved. I was too afraid and ashamed of being gay.

Today, I’ll be walking in my first Pride Parade in Ottawa with the Ten Oaks Project. It has been a long journey of acceptance, which you can read in my Ottawa Citizen op-ed and CBC interview from last year. I’m excited to walk with my friends, and celebrate our beautiful and diverse tapestry.

“Don’t deprive people of who you really are.”

Those are some wise words from that friend who wanted to walk with me in the parade. I keep that quote in my wallet to remind me to be proud of who I am.

Each one of us has so much to offer the world around us, so shine brightly. Happy Pride!

The Team Players at the Ten Oaks bowl-a-thon. (Kathleen Clark)

 Hanging out with the Team Players at the Ten Oaks bowl-a-thon. (Kathleen Clark)

A Christian comes out: an op-ed I wrote in the Ottawa Citizen

20 Aug

“Jenna, I don’t see what’s the big deal of you walking in the Pride Parade,” my friend said. “No one will even know you’re gay.”

“Isn’t a huge part of walking in the parade to show you’re proud of who you are?” I replied. “I’m not proud of who I am right now, but I hope one day I will be.”

That was two years ago when the thought of walking in the Capital Pride Parade petrified me. I was still ashamed of being gay and I wasn’t comfortable in my own skin.

Needless to say, a lot has change over these past several years. I’ve come out through my poetry, blog and public speaking engagements. I’ve also openly discussed the struggles of being gay and Christian, and want to foster dialogue between these communities.

This week is Pride Week in Ottawa and after many years of struggling with my sexuality, I can finally say I am proud of who I am.

You can check out my op-ed piece that was published today in the Ottawa Citizen, A Christian comes out, here. Please let me know what you think and I hope you can see the value of respectful dialogue and speaking your stories.

I've come a long way.

I’ve come a long way.

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