A Gospel Singer Slims Down and Comes Out
DeJuaii Pace, who's on the new Addicted to Food docuseries, told The Root how the show helped her embrace her life as a black, Christian, gay, 45-year-old virgin.
DP: Even when they kept asking why I kept hanging around my friends who were in the lifestyle, I just kept denying it. I just made a lot of excuses. I'd say things like I love being around those types of people because they're so artistic, they're so open and they're the only ones who really love me and let me be me, and I'm very creative when I'm around them.
I was saying, just because I befriend these people doesn't mean I'm like that. I denied it and denied it. I was embarrassed about it, but I was just like, if I'm going to grow and get healed from the disease of being addicted to food and eating over this thing, I've got to face it and come out with it. I didn't want the disease anymore, so I had to get rid of the secret.
TR: You sound confident and sure of what you're doing. Are you at peace?
DP: I'm at peace because I made peace with God about it. And I told him, "Listen, You're the only who can deal with this thing; you're the only one who can direct me through it. But I'm going to be honest with you, God:
"Yes, I like it." I did three 40-day fasts to get rid of the "demon," or "the spirit," of the [gay] lifestyle, as we call it. And [fasting] kept things at bay, but the temptations were there when I wasn't deeply praying and fasting, and when I re-emerged, the temptations were still there.
And I kept saying, "God, if you're a God who delivers from all manner of [iniquity], then why is this thing still here?" Sometimes it's not strong for years, and then at moments it's strong. There's something that God is doing here that we in the church community need to take a closer look at. Don't just say, "You gotta get rid of it."
TR: For a lot of churches in the black community, homosexuality could be staring them in the face, whether it's the choir director or even the pastor, and people will pretend it's not there and speak against it. You seem very passionate about changing that type of behavior. Are you doing anything to help do that?
DP: I feel that is the beginning of what God is calling forth at this time. I do not have all of the answers. For me, I am taking it day by day.
I want my soul mate. However God brings that about is fine with me. I know that God loves me, and he has created me, and this thing is here. I feel that it is part of my destiny to find out what is really going on. Because I cannot say it's against God, and I cannot say God is for it. All I'm saying now is that we cannot tell people what we've been telling them. I have friends who've stopped going to church because of that.
TR: Speaking of soul mates, you have never had sex with a man or a woman, right?