In this remarkable book, Mel White details his twenty-five years of being counseled, exorcised, electric-shocked, prayed for, and nearly driven to suicide because his church said homosexuality was wrong. But his salvation—to be openly gay and Christian—is more than a unique coming-out story. It is a chilling exposé that goes right into the secret meetings and hidden agendas of the religious right. Told by an eyewitness and sure to anger those Mel White once knew best, Stranger at the Gate is a warning about where the politics of hate may lead America … a brave book by a good man whose words can make us richer in spirit and much wiser too.
—Dallas Morning News
“A courageous and important book … a clarion call for justice and freedom.”
—Malcolm Boyd, Episcopal priest, author of Take Off the Mask
“[Mel White is] perhaps the finest writer I know … a man of integrity and fairness.”
—Jerry Falwell, to Daniel Cattau of the Dallas Morning News
“Compelling …eloquent and compassionate … We learn as much about growing up in the Christian right as we do about gay life in Mel White’s heartfelt and revealing memoir.”
Chapter One: In the Beginning – The Ghost of Silence
Chapter Two: Adolescence – The Ghost of Fear
Chapter Three: High School – The Ghost of Loneliness
Chapter Four: College – The Ghost of False Hope
Chapter Five: 1962-64, Learning to Tell the Truth
Chapter Six: 1964-70, Learning About Friendship
Chapter Seven: 1970-80, Taking the First Steps Toward Integrity
Chapter Eight: 1980-81, Facing Reality
Chapter Nine: 1981, Surviving Infatuation and Isolation
Chapter Ten: 1982-83, “It’s Going to Be All Right, Dad!”
Chapter Eleven: 1984-90, Giving Up the Ghost!
Chapter Twelve: 1990-91, One Last Year of Silence
Chapter Thirteen: 1991-93, A Ghost No More!
Chapter Fourteen: 1993-94, Time for Doing Justice!
Appendix: Six Letters to the Religious Right
Author’s Notes, References, and Resources