Won't you be my neighbor?
Wingspan, the Southern Arizona gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered community center, is launching an absolutely wonderful image campaign called "Neighbors You Know." (You can also read about it in the Arizona Daily Star here.)
The basic idea is eight community members featured in eight different spots. (Nine, actually, since one of them does a separate Spanish spot.) They basically talk about their contributions to the community and finish by saying "I'm ________, and I'm your neighbor." The group includes (among others) a doctor, an Episcopal priest, a test pilot/systems engineer, a retired banker/active volunteer, and a former army sergeant. All of them are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered.
The purpose of this campaign is not political. It's not connected to any political issue nor is it trying to raise any money. It isn't looking for viewers to take any particular action. It simply is highlighting something a lot of people either don't realize or would like to ignore: GLBT people are our neighbors.
When Jesus was asked what one must do to inherit eternal life, he answered that we are to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, strength, and mind, and love our neighbor as ourselves. The person who asked the question, a lawyer, was looking for a loophole, so he asked Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" The answer was the parable of the Good Samaritan, which basically means EVERYONE is my neighbor. No exceptions. (Luke 10:25-37)
Thank you, Wingspan, for reminding us who our neighbor is.