Cain said to his brother Abel, ‘Let us go out to the field.’ And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, ‘Where is your brother Abel?’ He said, ‘I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?’ And the Lord said, ‘What have you done? Listen; your brother’s blood is crying out to me from the ground! (Genesis 4:8-10, NRSV)
God, the blood of our trans siblings, our trans brothers, our trans sisters, calls out to you from the ground. You love them so much, you have counted the hairs upon their heads. Not even a sparrow falls that you do not notice.
And how like birds they have been! Some have been trapped by the hunter’s snare. They were killed for their plumage, or their voice, or their presumption to sing their own song. Yet in truth they were killed for none of these. Violence always justifies itself, but it has no reason; all it has are excuses.
Some have taken their own lives, because a world of rejection and fear is too much like hell. Those appointed to speak good news to them have often preached only bad news and a hopeless future. Yet you hold the keys of hell and death, and your good news to all people is really and truly for all people.
We lament their deaths, but celebrate their lives, and the lives of all who are trans. For all of us who put our hope in you wish to be trans. We wish to be trans-mortal. Trans-spiritual. Trans-human. We set our hope on the resurrection and the promise of a new body, an embodied existence where Jew or Greek, poor or rich, male and female are no longer the ways we see the world. Our bodies, these fragile vessels of pain and pleasure, carry everything we are, and in the resurrection we do not know what we will be—but we will all be changed.
When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’ ‘Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?’ (1 Corinthians 15:54-55, NRSV)
God, swallow up death with your life. Wipe out injustice and abuse with your shalom. Inspire us with a resurrection vision for all people.