She's also gay, a matter that would not normally concern us very much. ("Really? A gay Christian musician? Have you ever been to a church organists' conference?") But after an eight-year hiatus, she is performing and recording again, and in connection with this return sat for an interview with Christianity Today.
It's not a great interview, but it has some interesting moments. One, however, hits us where we live, more or less literally. Knapp talks about her struggle -- not with herself, but with "the church," meaning the Christians she has known and worked with. She is pretty clearly afraid that much of her fan base will desert her, and we expect that she's right. But that's not the part that hit us.
At one point, the interviewer says, "You're living in Nashville. Are you in a church now?"
And Knapp's answer, in its entirety, is, "No."
Can you hear our heart breaking? Because for any Christian, anywhere, to be without a congregation -- a place to worship, and people with whom to worship --is a calamity. And it must be undone. Fortunately, that won't be especially hard. So here's our fraternal suggestion for our sister Jennifer:
First, try the Lutherans. (Six congregations in Nashville). We're nice people, and, in case you hadn't noticed, we've put ourselves pretty far out on a limb lately, specifically because we want gay people to know that they are welcome in every part of our life as a community. While there is no Reconciling in Christ congregation in the state of Tennessee, there are several in nearby Kentucky. The closest is Glasgow -- about 90 minutes up on I-65. But even without the RIC badge of approval, you may your average Lutheran parish a pretty welcoming place.
If that doesn't work out, try the Episcopalians. A bit less warm and fuzzy, in our experience, but waaay better dressed. And Presbyterians, too, if you can find the right bunch. And Methodist. Basically, the much-abused mainline churches, and especially those with a northern European bent, have a lot of congregations that don't care much about your sex life, as long as it doesn't break any laws. (And here's a newspaper article about some of the gay-friendly churches in your area.)
And if you still can't find a church, call us. Seriously. Drop a line, and we will make some calls. We're not joking. You are not alone -- and neither is anybody else in your position, even if they aren't famous.