Resurrected: Jesus, Queen of Heaven
Back in 2009, Jo Clifford, above, caused much wailing and gnashing of teeth when she portrayed Jesus Christ as a transgender woman at the Glasgay! arts festival.
God: ‘My Son Is Not A Pervert’.
Box office staffers received death threats, and a plain-clothed police officer was in attendance at the live performance to make sure Clifford didn’t get attacked.
Though she was “traumatised” at the time by the fury of the faith-heads, Jo (formerly John) Clifford, 65, who identifies as a trans woman, continued to perform The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven in churches and theatres across the country with far fewer negative reactions, and has even garnered interest from international theatres.
It’s been moving and exciting to see how many Christian people are supporting me now, as well as non-believers. It seems to speak to them in a way that I find really beautiful.
The Gospel According to Jesus, Queen of Heaven, will be performed once again at the Outburst Queer Arts Festival in Northern Ireland on November 15.
There’s a little sermon that reminds the audience that Jesus never had a single word of condemnation for transpeople. The show is a reminder that we have existed throughout this world and many cultures have accepted and celebrated our existence.
Clifford is a practicing Christian, but not a conventional “churchy” sort.
It was very clear to me that the only way I could belong to the church was through being in the closet and living a lie.
Now, she credits her renewed Christian devotion to a particularly LGBTI-friendly church she attends in Edinburgh.