Can you say “Dental Dam” in Church?

A group of us at Lockerbie Central United Methodist Church went down to New Hope Community Church on Indy’s southside for a World AIDS Day event. 

The event wasn’t so much a worship service but a teach-in about AIDS and the local AIDS crisis led by a volunteer from the Damien Center.  Turns out Father Damien was a Catholic priest who lived in the last half of the nineteenth century and ministered to a leper colony in Hawaii.  The Damien Center istelf was founded in 1987 Indianapolis by Episcoplian and Catholic priests.)

I was at an event this summer at our church where we showed the movie Do The Right Thing on its twentieth anniversary.  Someone on facebook called it the “most honest discussion they have had about race in church.”  On this World AIDS Day, I felt that our conversation was the most honest conversation we have had about AIDS in church. 

Again, the conversation was more of a teach-in than anything, but the bluntess of the words–condom, dental dam, semen, vaginal secretion, IV drug use, dirty needles, anal sex–allowed for real questions to be answered.  If more churches and schools could just get all of this out there without embarrassment or restrictions–just blunt and honest talk– I think we’d all be better for it.


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