God Loves Bakla: My Life in the Closet

God Loves Bakla: My Life in the Closet

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He grew up in Manila during the Marcos years. A consistent honor student at a prestigious Catholic university, Raymond “Bong” Alikpala seemed destined for success. Yet all the while he knew that he was somehow different from the other boys, and he was terrified that if his secret were exposed, his life would forever be destroyed.

Homosexuality has increasingly gained acceptance in many parts of the world. Not so in the predominantly Catholic Philippines, where being bakla is still regarded as a “disordered inclination” and gays are resigned to second-class status. Being ambitious, the future lawyer felt he had no choice but to live in the closet.

God Loves Bakla courageously reveals the hidden struggles of a young closeted Filipino gay man who despaired why God had given him such a heavy cross to bear. After three decades of hiding his true self from the world, in an odyssey of self-discovery that passes through Singapore, Phnom Penh, Bangkok, and the priesthood, he finally realizes that God wants him to have life to the full and that this actually means coming out...