Home Podcast Mark Yarhouse: How to Pastor Someone Who Has Gender Dysphoria

Mark Yarhouse: How to Pastor Someone Who Has Gender Dysphoria

“Science shouldn’t run the show, but it informs it.”

“There [in pastoral care], I think it is more on a case-by-case basis. How do I walk with this person? There is a true north because I’ve been doing my theological work, but I walk with this person as they’re sorting out issues surrounding sexuality and gender.”

“One of the misconceptions is that [gender dysphoria] is just willful disobedience, and that tends to come out of the integrity lens, that somehow a person’s making bad decisions and that gets them to this place of gender dysphoria.”

“One thing to think about is whether the path forward in ministry is going to be to restore creational intent or whether it’s going to be to foster Christ-likeness with an enduring condition. And that probably goes back to the three lenses.”

“I do think that most people experience gender dysphoria as an enduring reality, as a besetting condition.” 

“What’s your primary area of ministry? What are you called to? Most of us are not called to debate and engage with political activists. But if you are, it takes a different sort of skill set to navigate those debates at that level.”

“You’ve got to avoid little sound bites and memes that people do all the time in ministry.”

“Ministering to this group of people is a sustained presence, sustained over time.”

“I think if a church is going to start to identify things that preclude them from fellowshipping with people, they’re going to have to be very thoughtful about being consistent here around what they’re saying. Because there’s a lot of things that get a pass in the local church.”

“Whenever you do a sermon… it will come across to the person in the pew as a little more top-down. That doesn’t mean you don’t do it, but realize how that’s experienced. What I try to do is make more emotional connections with the people in my audience.”

“If I preach, I would preach as though there are people in my pews navigating these issues. You preach differently when you start to think of people in the pew, and this is their story.”

Mentioned in the Show by Dr. Mark Yarhouse

Genesis 3
John 9

Emerging Gender Identities: Understanding the Diverse Experiences of Today’s Youth by Dr. Mark Yarhouse and Dr. Julia Sadusky
Understanding Gender Dysphoria: Navigating Transgender Issues in a Changing Culture by Dr. Mark Yarhouse

Sexual and Gender Identity Institute

Follow Mark on Twitter

Embodied: Transgender Identities, the Church, and What the Bible Has to Say by Dr. Preston Sprinkle
Dr. Lisa Littman
Richard Mouw

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As Vice President of Ministry Mobilization for Outreach, Inc., Jason dedicates his time to encouraging and equipping churches, denominations and ministry organizations to develop their Kingdom effectiveness by creating a culture that is both incarnational and invitational. He also serves as the Executive Director of the National Back to Church Sunday movement and hosts the weekly ChurchLeaders podcast. Jason lives on Anastasia Island, Florida, with his beautiful wife and children. Connect with him on Twitter and Instagram @jasondaye