LONDON — Less than a year after announcing her support for same-sex ‘marriage,’ a UK-based worship artist whose songs are sung in American churches on any given Sunday has come out as a lesbian.
Vicky Beeching first was introduced in the Christian music industry in 2002, but became more prominent with the release of her worship album Yesterday, Today and Forever in 2005. The release featured songs such as Above All Else, Great is Your Glory, Search Me, and a new take on the hymn Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus. She released two additional albums in 2007 and 2010, co-writing the song Glory to God Forever with fellow worship artist Steve Fee and touring with the band Delirious and singer/songwriter Rebecca St. James.
In 2012, Beeching outlined her feminist beliefs in an article entitled Jesus Was a Feminist and So Am I and appeared on BBC News to explain why she believed women should be permitted to serve as bishops in the Angelican church.
“My Christian friends chide me for my overtly feminist views, while the atheist-feminist circles I move in despair at my commitment to what they see as a patriarchal religion,” she wrote. “It would be much easier to choose one or the other—Christianity or feminism, but I believe they should be—and are—utterly compatible.”
In December of last year, Beeching came out in support of same-sex “marriage” in appearing on UK’s Good Morning Sunday hosted by Clare Balding. She later posted her thoughts more in-depth in three separate entries on her blog.
“Not many evangelical Christians hold the theology hold that I do in affirming that same-sex relationships and same-sex marriage is acceptable to God and can be celebrated,” Beeching told Christianity Today in June. “Since speaking out and blogging about equal marriage, there’s been a boycott of my songs. My income comes from royalties, so unless they’re sung, I lose my income, which has been difficult. It’s been deeply painful to see people writing off 15 years of my work, saying that it’s now tarnished.”
Now, The Independent released an interview with Beeching on Wednesday, where the singer/songwriter/blogger came out as a lesbian herself.
“I felt like coming out was something I needed to do,” she said. “The [UK Angelican] Church has now voted to enable women to become bishops, literally almost a month ago today, on July 14th. The next big hurdle the church faces is the discussion around sexuality. So it felt important for me to add my voice to that debate as it will be the key topic for the decades to come. And my voice will make much more difference if I’m open about my sexuality, as I can share more honestly about what it’s like to be a gay Christian.”
She said that she had been struggling with same-sex attraction since she was twelve, and eventually decided to stop fighting it.
“What Jesus taught was a radical message of welcome and inclusion and love,” Beeching stated. “I feel certain God loves me just the way I am, and I have a huge sense of calling to communicate that to young people.”
And now, she says she wants to work to change the beliefs of those in the Church.
“I am not angry with the Church even though it’s been a painful journey. I still hold as tightly to my Christian faith as ever,” Beeching said. “I have a lot of hope for the future of the Church—that we can see a move towards inclusion, welcome and love for LGBT people.”
Reaction to Beeching’s announcement has been mixed.
“Wow, what an example of being covered by the blood of the Lamb!” one commenter wrote.
“So sad,” another stated. “God loves the way that we are, but not our sins. Please remember that. [Just] because we think that we’re right [doesn’t] mean that God is okay with our decision.”
“It’s amazing how people can justify what Christ is against. We do sin and ask for forgiveness for making that mistake. Then we make the change to become stronger so we don’t do it again,” a third commenter wrote. “And you wonder why people think Christians are hypocrites. Start standing up for what Christ teaches. Black or white. Hot or cold. There’s no grey or warm in Gods eyes!”