Wes Patterson- Ministry Coordinator at New Direction Ministries– shares from a youth pastor’s perspective about the upside of teens questioning their sexuality.
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Wes has a heart that beats for the ‘forgotten’ and those that have no voice. He has spent more than a decade working in various aspects of church ministry ranging from custodial duties to church planting to youth and children’s ministry.
In his time working in the church he was fortunate to encounter and journey with individuals from many different perspectives and backgrounds. Such diversity was an opportunity to see just how messy real life can be.
Wes grew up in a fairly fundamentalist church context. As a young boy and teen, he didn’t have the language or opportunity to have authentic conversations about the differences he sensed in his own sexuality. Throwing himself into ministry full-time seemed like the one way he could deal with this reality and remain faithful to God. Rather than escaping, however, Wes became more and more aware of his own questions and the inconsistencies he experienced within the church. After burning out on religion and reigniting his faith in Jesus, Wes began to come out to his family and friends. In his exploration of faith and sexuality, he came across New Direction and found that he resonated with nurturing a spacious place for people who didn’t fit nice and neatly into the heterosexual mainstream but who still cared about their faith and wanted to find a way to both live authentically and continue to grow as a follower of Christ. Now as a staff member at New Direction, Wes desires to see others find safe places to ask questions, study Scripture, and reconcile their faith and sexuality.
To learn more about New Direction Ministries just go to their website www.newdirection.ca or stay in touch via twitter @NewDirectionCAN