Dennae Pierre has borne a significant weight for retracting her endorsement of my book, Beautiful Union. I would like to affirm Dennae’s right to retract her endorsement and share my part in the extenuating circumstances that led to her being in this position.
A week before endorsements were due, I learned that there was still space for another endorsement or two. I remembered that Dennae had written a speaking endorsement for me, based on a training I gave for The Surge Network (a network she leads of Phoenix-area churches). That presentation was based on a section of Beautiful Union that included what I considered (at the time) to be the most controversial section. The talk was well received and Dennae wrote a kind endorsement.
I reached out to Dennae, asking if she would consider an endorsement for Beautiful Union. I included the full manuscript and possible wording that could be used, adapted from her speaking endorsement. I also included the names of some other endorsers of the book so she would know she was in good company.
I recognize now that I put Dennae in a difficult position. One week was likely not enough time for her to give the manuscript a close read. While I do not believe it is inherently wrong to ask for a rush endorsement, I know now she experienced pressure, given our friendship, to rush an endorsement on a book she was not fully familiar with. She did this as a favor to me.
I am truly sorry, Dennae. I feel horrible for how this whole situation has impacted you, in light of your name becoming associated with a book you don’t agree with. My heart is heavy for the fallout you have had to endure.
Because this situation is public, I wish to publicly acknowledge here the difficult position I put Dennae in with the rushed circumstance. The reason for the delay in this communication has been to honor a process Dennae requested as we work through this together.
It’s okay to have different views on complicated topics. People have the agency to decide which books they do and do not put their name on, based on their convictions. Dennae has my admiration as a leader and sister in Christ whose voice and contributions to the kingdom I greatly respect.
Joshua Ryan Butler