From Christendom to Freedom: Journey-Making with a Black Trans Elder


In Christendom to Freedom: Journey-Making with a Black Transgender Elder (2020), Jonathon Thunderword offers his spiritual autobiography, tracing his path from Christianity into Judaism and beyond. Stories include anecdotes and observations of Christianity (Catholic and Protestant), Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism as well as his engagement with the psychology of religion and non-believers (such as atheists, agnostics, humanists, free thinkers).

.Jonathon does not claim to have all of the answers to life’s big questions, but he offers himself as a “possibility model,” showing that it is possible to create a spiritual path that works for each individual’s particular needs.

Each chapter includes four to six episodes from Jonathon’s life–and each episode ends with one or more questions that invite the reader to reflect on their own journey, needs, and perspectives.  The result is a hybrid, both storybook and workbook, designed to help the reader explore their own path to freedom.

Table of Contents
with links to Foreword, Preface, Introduction, and Afterword

Launch Conversation
We will be on Facebook Live, Saturday, May 9

Note: The icon of Jonathon on the cover is provided by gc2b ( This piece was illustrated by Farren Koehne for gc2b’s 2019 Black History Month campaign titled, “In Full Bloom.”

About the Author

Jonathon Thunderword is a theologian, a scholar, and a free-thinker. He is an omni-faith, multi-spiritual practitioner. He has spent his adult career trying to relieve suffering. He can be reached through his Trans Anointing ministry.  

Jonathon’s journey has included Christian ordination as clergy, studies at the Pacific School of Religion (Berkeley, CA), conversion to Judaism, study under a Hindu guru, as well as pilgrimages to Mexico, Israel, and India.

Jonathon is a founding member of the TransSaints ministry of the Fellowship of Affirming Ministries, the chair of the Golden Flames (Elders) committee of the Black Trans Advocacy International, and a long-time contributor to Transfaith who serves on the awards committee for the Minister Bobbie Jean Baker Memorial Fund.

Jonathon is also a certified alcohol and substance abuse counselor who has worked with persons living with AIDS/HIV, homeless populations, people with addictive behaviors, sex abuse, spiritual/religious abuse and those that are marginalized. He is also an environmentalist and animal activist.