“Scott’s is a story at once both familiar and unique. He is a great story teller because we are invited to reflect how his story is our story, and even a part of the Sacred Story of God’s dance with each of us. I found myself pausing often to reflect on my own journey as Scott’s honesty startled me into nostalgia. It is also a story of hope. A good story speaks for people as much as to people and Open invites us to do just that as we hear our story in Scott Jones’. This opened my heart anew in some very important ways, and hopefully it will do the same for you. “–Michael Piazza, founding pastor of Cathedral of Hope and author of Gay by God.
“This is a touching memoir—a coming out story in the best sense of the genre. Coming out is never simply a one-time grand confessional but it’s about the continual work of discerning and living our truths in community. While bravery is certainly required to come out, perhaps even more central is curiosity about ourselves and the people who inhabit our lives. Such curiosity also makes for great storytelling as it does in Scott’s memoir. Scott has provided us with a glimpse into the experience of living openly as a Southern gay Christian minister. This is an important book that I hope is widely read.”–Sharon Groves, Vice-President for Partner Engagement at Auburn Seminary and former Director of the Religion and Faith Program at the Human Rights Campaign.
“Scott movingly and eloquently describes his struggle to reconcile his sexuality with his deep Christian spirituality in a milieu that is, shall we say, less than embracing of the former, and in some ways, not really of the latter, either.”–Terence Hawkins, founding director of the Yale Writer’s Conference and author of American Neolithic. Check out his full post here.
“Scott Jones has given us an important first-person account of queer Christian life in Middle America. A narrative companion to the “rural turn” in LGBTQ scholarship, Open explores the heartache and triumphs of growing up and coming out in Texas and Oklahoma. This is a tale of the personal and political courage it takes to face moral entrepreneurs who equate homosexuality with terrorism and peddle other anti-gay snake oil. Jones’s story inspires!”– Carol Mason, author of Oklahomo: Lessons in Unqueering America
“Open is hard to put down, Scott Jones is unflinching in his candidness about his coming out journey as a man of faith. As you read his story you get no respite from feeling deeply. I cried, I laughed, I cheered him on for his bravery. It was an eye opening narrative, even for me a queer woman of color like myself.”–Ruth Marimo, author of OUTsider: Crossing Borders. Breaking Rules. Gaining Pride.
“Scott is honest and expansive in his treatment of events, and his writing is clear, poignant, open (sorry), and often funny. The memoir as a genre is a bit overdone these days, but Scott’s story is one that will give hope to young (and old) people caught in the morass of anti-LGBTQ traditions, whether political or religious.”–Greg Horton, freelance writer and adjunct professor