Meet the Christians who have fought transgender ideology

7 August 2023

Communications Manager Paul Huxley on the Christians who’ve been on the frontlines of opposing transgender ideology

As society begins to realise the harm that has been caused by radical transgender ideology, more commentators and pundits are raising their voices to side with ‘gender critical’ feminists.

For example, Andrew Neil recently said he’s proud to be called a TERF.

He accepts that he’s “something of a johnny-come-lately” to the issue. There’s no need to be cynical or bitter about this – Neil speaking up is a step in the right direction. But there’s a good chance that when you’re new to an issue like this that you miss some of the bigger picture. In Neil’s case, it seems to be the persistent efforts – at significant cost – of Christians.

In the article, Neil lists a roll call of women who have “fought in the trenches” on issues relating to transgenderism:

“I have merely reached the foothills of all the issues involved in the transgender debate. I now have a new summer reading list whose authors represent a roll call of honour to those who have fought in the trenches, often at great personal cost: Helen Lewis, Julie Bindel, Sarah Ditum, Hannah Barnes, Helen Joyce, Labour MP Rosie Duffield, Hadley Freeman and others too numerous to mention (and, yes, you’ve noticed — there are no men on this list, which only underlines who’s been doing the heavy lifting).”

These women – and many others including JK Rowling, Maya Forstater, Kathleen Stock and Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull have indeed been effective in exposing problems with gender ideology.

But it is all too common for Christians to be airbrushed out of this picture. The role of Christians in opposing this damaging ideology is rarely recognised.

And with this, the ‘gender critical’ position is often presented as the only viable alternative to transgender ideology This cements the untrue and dangerous idea that young people suffering with gender distress are, in fact, LGB and should be encouraged to embrace that identity.

Many Christians have been on the front lines and have paid a significant price for opposing transgender ideology. Some prominent Christians or churches may have abandoned the teaching of scripture and capitulated to this ideology, but this does not negate the many who have remained faithful to God and his word.

These Christians need to be known and celebrated. This list should be enough to show, when we look back in disbelief at this period of madness, that Christians played a critical role in opposing this harmful ideology.

Peter Benjamin

Peter Benjamin cross-dressed and lived as a transgender woman for seven years – undergoing irreversible surgery – before reverting back to his God-given male identity. He has called for medical and mental health services to exercise more caution before allowing people to make life-altering decisions.

Miriam Cates

MP for Penistone and Stocksbridge, Miriam Cates has faced hostility for being vocal in parliament in asking for new guidance on transgenderism in schools and opposing the trans activism of groups like Mermaids and Stonewall.

Caroline Farrow

Journalist and campaigner Caroline Farrow has vocally opposed transgender ideology for many years, including in her role at CitizenGo. She has faced significant legal threats and harassment for speaking out.


‘Hannah’, who cannot be named for legal reasons, lost her job as a primary school teacher after raising safeguarding concerns over a child that was socially ‘transitioning’ gender at her school.

Kristie Higgs

Kristie lost her job as a school pastoral assistant for sharing her concerns about inappropriate education materials in a private Facebook post. The posts raised concerns about pro-trans books that including My Princess Boy and Red: A crayon’s story

David Mackereth

Christian doctor David Mackereth lost his job as an assessor for the Department for Work and Pensions after saying he wouldn’t use transgender pronouns. David said that using transgender pronouns went against his conscience as a doctor and Bible-believing Christian. Judges in his case initially ruled that his beliefs were not protected under the Equality Act – a decision that was overturned by the Employment Appeal Tribunal – which nevertheless ruled that Christians cannot express those beliefs in the workplace without fear of losing their jobs.

Dave McConnell

Street preacher Dave McConnell was convicted of a public order offence because he ‘misgendered’ a biological male who self-identified as a ‘trans woman’ in Leeds City Centre. With the Christian Legal Centre’s help, his conviction was overturned – but not before he was forced to do 80 hours of community service.

Harry Miller

Harry Miller, a former police officer from Humberside, was investigated by police over a poem he posted on Twitter. After a police officer told him he needed to “check his thinking”, Harry a non-crime hate incident was put on his record accusing him of ‘transphobic hate’. As co-founder of Fair Cop, Harry successfully challenged how the police record such incidents.

The New Normal authors

In 2016, Christian Concern hosted a conference called The New Normal, highlighting Christian thinking about (and opposition to) transgenderism, which at the time was only just beginning to come to popular awareness. The contributions from Dr Lisa Nolland, Dr Carys Moseley, Carlos D. Flores, Professor Robert Oscar Lopez, James D. Lopez, Daniel Moody, Professor John Nolland, Dr Peter Saunders, Dr Rick Thomas, Brittany Klein and Julia Gasper were later featured in a book critiquing transgender ideology.

John Parker

John Parker was a vicar who resigned his position as a governor at a Church of England primary school after it succumbed to transgender ideology and invited trans lobby group Mermaids to train staff. He exposed the ideology and falsehoods being promoted at the school by Mermaids – which had not yet been discredited.

Bernard Randall

School chaplain Bernard Randall lost his job after preaching a sermon in chapel which said that no one should be forced to accept claims about gender identity. This was partly in response to Educate and Celebrate, which was promoting transgender ideology through training sessions at the school.

Lynda Rose

CEO of Voice for Justice UK and convenor of the Lords and Commons Family and Child Protection Group, Lynda Rose has stood for God’s pattern for men and women consistently, particularly in relation to inappropriate education materials.

Nigel and Sally Rowe

Christian parents Nigel and Sally Rowe removed their children from a Church of England school due to its pro-transgender policies. They secured over £20,000 in legal costs after challenging school guidelines that embraced transgender ideology, also winning a commitment from the government to reform its guidance.

Joshua Sutcliffe

A maths teacher by trade, Joshua Sutcliffe was fired from his job and then banned from teaching for charges stemming back to when he ‘misgendered’ a pupil. His story was one of the first times the implications of transgender ideology became widely known, when it went public in 2017.

Andrea Williams

As CEO and co-founder of Christian Concern and the Christian Legal Centre, which has supported many of the people listed above, Andrea Williams has undeniably been at the forefront of this battle throughout these years.

And many more…

This list of Christians only includes those who have stood in this battle in the United Kingdom. If we looked overseas, we would see many more Christians at the front of this battle – including many academics, media personalities, church leaders and politicians.

More than that – it also only covers the last seven years or so since transgenderism’s meteoric rise into the public consciousness. Christians were in fact the only significant voices criticising the Gender Recognition Act back in 2004.

Even with these constraints, I will no doubt have missed many others who deserve to be on my own roll of honour.

But this list isn’t simply to praise those who’ve stood. It’s to remind Christians that we have stood firm when the opposition has been fiercest and when God’s pattern for men and women has been mocked.

Although we can be genuinely grateful for the contributions of others who have stood for the truth about transgenderism, we shouldn’t feel cowed or embarrassed about our own role. Let’s keep standing for truth in the months and years ahead.

  • Share

Related articles

All content has been loaded.

Take action

Join our email list to receive the latest updates for prayer and action.

Find out more about the legal support we're giving Christians.

Help us put the hope of Jesus at the heart of society.