Earlier this month, a prominent Anchorage Jewish community – Congregation Beth Shalom – welcomed three drag queens to their place of worship for an emerging development on the drag queen story hour trend.
The LGBTQ activist group – The Queen’s Guard – admits to being a little taken aback when Rabbi Abram Goodstein asked to partner with them for the event.
“When Rabbi Abram reached out about having a Drag Queen Story Hour at Congregation Beth Shalom, I was a little surprised,” The Queens Guard Facebook page states. “When I met with Rabbi Abram to discuss his idea, to go over details, I was really not sure what to expect.”
The gathering featured a cross-dressing, bearded and mini-skirt-wearing Golden Delicious, along with DelaRosa and Dr. Feelgood. The gender-bending trio read children’s stories and sang songs as they promoted drag culture to children and others.
“Something great began on Sunday, May 7th, at the Congregation Beth Sholom in Anchorage,” The Queen’s Guard stated. “An amazing beginning to what will hopefully be many more events together!”
Congregation Beth Sholom describes itself as “a progressive congregation affiliated with Reform Judaism.”
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Traditionally associated with sexualized gay bar entertainment, drag queen performances have since branched out to youth libraries, cultural centers and now places of worship. A number of liberal Christian churches around the nation are also embracing the idea of infusing drag culture into sacred spaces traditionally set aside for praise and worship of God.
Earlier this month a church in Kansas City held a drag queen event for children that featured a cast of performers. A promotional page for the event admits that drag queen events for kids make news “because some parties believe that the presence of these drag queens will confuse and challenge the understanding these kids will have about gender identity or sexual orientation.”
The page asserts that the goal is to “entertain first and demonstrate the value of diversity and healthy curiosity second. A child attending this event can appreciate that grown-ups can be silly and play dress up.”