She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.
A Hong Kong native, Shuk Man “Selina” Sun (43) was ordained pastor by the Hong Kong Blessed Minority Christian Fellowship (Hkbmcf), a Christian group for sexual minorities. Selina serves as the pastor of the Hkbmcf and actively promotes dialogue and understanding between church organizations and communities. She stands firm on the side of this group and helps rebuild their self-esteem and confidence. In the past few years, membership of the Hkbmcf has steadily increased and sexual minorities are coming to be accepted by the church and society … (1000peacewomen).
She says: “People are biased against those of different sexual orientation. Isolation does more damage. Let’s learn to put away prejudice, be more flexible, and see people with Christ’s heart”.
Shuk Man “Selina” Sun – Hong Kong, China
She works for Hong Kong Blessed Minority Christian Fellowship HKBMCF.
(She is) a Hong Kong native, Selina, Sun Suk Man (43) holds masters degrees in Divinity and Sacred Theology. She engaged in pastoral work for some ten years before joining the Hong Kong Blessed Minority Christian Fellowship (HKBMCF) in 2003.
Established in 1992, HKBMCF is a Christian Church for sexual minorities, and the only one of its kind in the territory. It was formed by a group of homosexual Christians. Its membership includes people with different sexual orientations. In the first decade of its formation, HKBMCF went through a period of instability and uncertainty, facing suspicion and disapproval from the institutional Church and even among some fellow homosexual Christians.
The Church sees homosexuality as a crime. Homosexuals are either being denied from the Church or they have to repent and change their sexual orientation. This fundamentally makes HKBMCF an outcast or an alien from the onset. Misunderstanding and biases breed suspicion and hostility. This is true for the Church and society at large. Despite efforts in recent years by different concerned groups to raise public awareness and understanding on sexual minorities, society still considers these minority groups as people who are not “normal”. They are denied of their basic human rights and there is no provision under the current legislation for homosexual marriage.
In 2002, Selina received an invitation from the HKBMCF to help train its members on caring work. The group is new to Selina, who specialises on the Old Testament and feminist theology. She decided to spend more time with the group to better prepare her training materials. The first HKBMCF event in which she participated was its tenth anniversary gathering. She was deeply impressed.
She was impressed because HKBMCF is a group without a pastor. Its members, whose sexuality is denied by the mainstream Church, survived the storms for ten years and still continues to struggle. She participated in small group activities and meetings and was soon accepted as a member of the family. They shared their struggle and bewilderment; they confided to Selina their joy and worries in their love relationships.
“I am a complete stranger to them. But I feel that I am being accepted without any reservation,” Selina said of her early experience with HKBMCF. “What they told me were not spiritual matters, but of their sexual identity and sexual orientation. How would God respond to these first hand experiences? I was deeply moved as I listened.”
“Because of denial and disapproval by their family, the Church and the society, they live under tremendous pressure and are tormented with fear and worry. They lock up these feelings and bury them deep down inside to protect themselves.”
“Many of their wounds are healed as we embrace each other. One would be numbed if he or she has had too many wounds. Or they have become so sensitive that they are insensitive. There are all kinds of sayings, mostly rumors, about homosexuals: that they are promiscuous, and they are not loyal etc. It hurts. And they have learnt to be very and oftentimes too careful with personal relationships. Some go to another extreme of letting go of their physical beings and turning off their spiritual souls. Hugs, physical touches, and reaffirmation of the totality of body and soul is to salvage the long-lost human dignity,”said Selina.
Selina was ordained pastor by HKBMCF and joined officially in 2003. She has been working on church minstration, pastoral counselling, spiritual direction, and religious education with fellow Christians in HKBMCF. The approach she adopts is to live with the brothers and sisters and walk together with them out of their impasse. She also organises courses on sexuality so that members of HKBMCF can build up a more positive image about themselves and improve their self-esteem.
To change the external environment, Selina has put a lgreat deal of effort into public education, contributing to church publications and other printed media, doing interviews, organizing workshops and seminars in universities, religious organizations and homosexual groups. Through dialogues and communications on a more equal footing, Selina hopes that hostility will be eliminated and a more harmonious and inclusive society can be built.
Over the past two years, Selina has often been confronted with offensive queries about her sexual orientation and other aspects of her private life. She has stayed on, however, and there has been a steady growth in the number of participants at gatherings organised by HKBMCF. Selina has been able to build up a clear profile for HKBMCF, with the aim of making it a safe zone for homosexual Christians, and a legitimate member of the institutional Church.
Selina’s work in HKBMCF opens up a new dimension for the application of feminist theology. It provides precious and pluralistic experience in the integration of sexuality and spirituality, social integration and pastoral work. (1000peacewomen).
Legislative Council: LegCo Panel on Home Affairs, Subcommittee to study discrimination on the ground of sexual orientation, 18 pdf-pages, August 20, 2001.
Sorry, no other text found, not for Shuk Man “Selina” Sun, Hong Kong, China, and not for the Hong Kong Blessed Minority Christian Fellowship HKBMCF.