Saturday, November 03, 2007

A celebration of Ian's Life

I attended the vigil yesterday in celebration of Ian's life. I wanted to post some of what I ended up reading. I was honored that some folks asked me to participate. It was beautiful to see so many community members, family, students, Friends there for Ian, his family and themselves.

I wanted to share part of what I read at the vigil:

My grandmother used to tell me a story about the stars. She told me that they are not stars but openings in the sky where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.

Just as the stars may represent an opening for Ian to shine down on us….

I ask that we be openings here on earth be openings, a crack of light…a crack through which love, truth, compassion, joy, and peace can flow, spread and flourish.

How can be a crack of light in so much darkness? We begin by celebrating difference. We stop hiding difference where we don’t have to have to look at it or think about it. We stop “tolerating” or “accepting” difference, as if we’re so much better for not being different. Instead we celebrate difference. Exactly how we celebrate difference is for each of us to discover.

Ian and many of us in the trans community have gifts to offer like our deep sense of personal integrity and our ability to be honest about who we are. We help the communities of which we are a part of by emphasizing love, self-respect, and human dignity as core values. When we are free to be our true and authentic selves, we can’t help but remind others to be the best possible people they can be.

As we draw our celebration to a close tonight I ask that you think about all the words that were spoken here tonight. Now..I ask that you think of all the words living in your hearts and minds. All the words you have not yet spoken…. When you leave here begin to light up the world with your words of knowledge and compassion in Ian’s honor.

Speak for your family, your friends, your allies,

Speak for Ian

Speak for yourself.

Take time each day to celebrate Transgender people as gifts
And Remember: We are all gifts

Take time each day to celebrate Transgender people as beautiful
And Remember: We are all beautiful.


K.A. said...

This is beautiful, Knoll.

- Katie

shannong said...


You did a fabulous job at the vigil on Friday. We were honored that you could make it and very happy with your words of encouragement. Make sure you share the Ian Benson Project with everyone and help us educate the world one person at a time.

All the best,
Shannon Garcia
TransYouth Family Advocates, Inc.