Raised in a black Pentecostal home in New York, the bishop knows first hand the struggles of grappling with your sexuality and the teachings of the church. Today as a church leader and a transgender man, he teaches the LGBT community that they are loved.

“God’s love is unconditional,” he said.

Makalani-MaHee has worked in the Unity Fellowship and Metropolitan Community Church movements, both inclusive of the LGBT community. Currently, he is a staff member at the Pride Center in Wilton Manors and works as an activist for the transgender community. One of the biggest challenges he says that trans people face is resources, as they face higher rates of poverty than other LGBT people.

Luckily, the bishop says that South Florida has a very active transgender and activist community, including the work that the Pride Center does. Every month, Makalani-MaHee hosts a potluck for transgender people and activists to get together.

“We’re making sure the T [in LGBT] is loud and bold,” he said.

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