Stranger at the Gate: To Be Gay and Christian in America

Front Cover
Simon & Schuster, 1994 - Religion - 333 pages
1 Review
Few issues divide our country more dangerously today than does the question of homosexuality and the conflict between the concept of family values and the individual rights of gays and lesbians. Families are divided, careers are ruined, lives are lost - all in the struggle between beliefs founded in tradition and those based on personal freedom. Spearheading the fight against the increasingly vocal homosexual community are the leaders of the so-called "religious right", men and women who denounce gays and lesbians from their pulpits and encourage their followers to enact laws against them. Perhaps no one is better qualified to write about these issues and the conflicts they engender than Mel White. He was born into a conservative Christian home and educated in conservative Christian schools and churches. He met his wife there, and together they raised their children to believe in God and to follow a Christian lifestyle. He worked within the church as a filmmaker and writer, and eventually became a ghostwriter of books, autobiographies, and speeches for such noted figures in the religious right as Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson and Billy Graham. But all that time Mel White had a secret. He was gay. In this remarkable book, Mel White looks at his own life in the church and details the struggles he went through to deny and overcome his own natural sexual desires. And in ways sure to anger many of the people he used to know best, he provides a firsthand look at the teachings and workings of the religious right today, showing how they use their power first to politicize their followers and then, using these politics, to spearhead fund-raising efforts. Most specifically, he examines the methodsthey use to create a campaign of hate and fear against homosexuals. It is a deeply personal story of torment and triumph, as well as a frightening examination of the anti-homosexual tactics of the religious right and a prophetic look at where they might lead our nation. Both autobiography and personal manifesto, Stranger at the Gate is the eloquent and deeply spiritual story of a gay Christian American determined to tell the truth as he experienced it.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - gentlespirit512 - LibraryThing

I first read this book many years ago, and it has held up over time. In fact, it's probably close to time to read it again. Mel's story was the first I heard that made gay plus Christian=okay make ... Read full review

STRANGER AT THE GATE: One Man's Struggle with Homophobia and the Religious Right

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

White, an evangelical minister and former ghostwriter for Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, and other prominent leaders of the religious right, here describes his half-century-long struggle to accept ... Read full review


Six Letters to the Religious Right
Authors Notes References and Resources

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

across Adolf Hitler again against gay antigay arms asked beach began Ben Vereen Beverly LaHaye Bible Billy Graham called Cathedral of Hope Christian Christian Coalition Christian fundamentalism Chuck Colson church civil rights closet condemn conservative Christian Corazon Aquino couldn't courage Cozumel Crescenta Valley Dallas dance death desperate didn't Dietrich Bonhoeffer don't Erinn evangelical ex-gay faith fear feel felt film Fox Island Francis Schaeffer freedom riders friends Fuller Seminary Fuller Theological Seminary Gary Gary Bauer gay agenda gay and lesbian gay bar gay men ghostwriting Gig Harbor God's grin guilt hate crimes healing heart Heinrich Himmler Heritage USA heterosexual high school homophobia homophobic homosexuality Jerry Falwell Jerry's Jesus Jim Dobson Jim Jones Jim Kennedy Jim Morgan Jonathan Potts Jonestown Kauai knew Laguna Laguna Beach leaders lesbians and gays Leviticus Liberty University lives Lon Mabon looked Los Angeles Lyla Lynchburg marriage Martin Luther King masturbation Mel White Metropolitan Community Churches Michael Mission Hill Moral Majority Multnomah Falls myself Natalie Wood nation never night Noni Oregon Citizens Alliance Oregonians Orval Faubus Paragraph 175 Pasadena pastor Pat Robertson Patricia Ireland Phyliss Pia Zadora Poipu prayed prayer preached R. J. Rushdoony Ralph Reed religious right reparative therapy Santa Cruz seminary sexual orientation Shrine Auditorium silence Simon and Garfunkel smiled Sodom Sodomites story suffering talk Tammy Bakker televangelists television terrible Third Reich though Tim LaHaye told Troy Perry Twenty-third Psalm U.S. Constitution U.S. Supreme Court University of Portland violence against gay walked wanted Warner Pacific College wasn't West Side Story wonder York City young Youth for Christ Zorba the Greek

About the author (1994)

Contributing editor for "National Geographic Traveler" and "Living Bird" magazines, author Mel White specializes in nature and travel writing. In addition to winning the 2002 Lowell Thomas Award for best environmental journalism article, he authored the "National Geographic Guide to Birdwatching Sites" and "A Birder's Guide to Arkansas, "among other titles.

Bibliographic information