Thursday, March 15, 2007

In and Out in the Bronx

José Orlando Serrano was born in Puerto Rico 41 years ago in a valley surrounded by mountains called Las Tetas des Cayey - the tits of Cayey- named for the little town that acted as a center of agricultural commerce for the region between San Juan and the south.

The son of a mechanic and a devoutly religious mother who sewed in a factory, Serrano was young when his parents divorced. He became a Catholic priest and spent the last 20 years as part of the Church's efforts to help rural communities in the Dominican Republic. A significant commitment for someone who spent but a month as an altar boy, having been kicked out for making too many jokes with the other youths.

In mid-2005, after much thought, Serrano insisted to his superiors in the Church that he be given a sabbatical to consider his vocation. He came to New York speaking only very limited English and lived in a rectory in the Bronx. This past October, he made the decision to leave the priesthood and live life openly as a gay man.

source: Gay City News

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