Author Topic: Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?  (Read 159 times)

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Offline Oceander

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Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?
« on: March 31, 2014, 09:59:42 AM »

Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?

By LZ Granderson, CNN Contributor
updated 12:03 AM EDT, Mon March 31, 2014

Editor's note: LZ Granderson is a CNN contributor, a senior writer for ESPN and lecturer at Northwestern University. Commentary by the former Hechinger Institute fellow has been recognized by the Online News Association, the National Association of Black Journalists and the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. Follow him on Twitter @locs_n_laughs. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

(CNN) -- Pope Francis sent shock waves around the globe last July when in addressing the issue of gays in the church, he opted not to remind his 1.6 billion followers about the fiery pits of hell but instead posed a question: "Who am I to judge?"

Not exactly a ringing endorsement for equality, but the rhetorical question was light years away from what we have grown accustomed to hearing from his predecessors. And because of that, we felt a glimmer of hope that maybe the needle within the larger Christian community had moved from hostile rhetoric to civil engagement.

Maybe even tolerance.

In their nearly one-hour meeting this week, Pope Francis and President Barack Obama reportedly spent the bulk of their time discussing empathy.

"It's the lack of empathy that makes it very easy for us to plunge into wars," the President said afterwards.

Presumably he was referring to military wars, though that sentiment is obviously applicable to the culture war as well.

For only a lack of empathy could prompt officials at a Christian school in Virginia to suggest an 8-year-old girl attend a different school because she wasn't behaving in a feminine enough way to stay at theirs. (The school says it can't provide details because of confidentiality, but "this matter is far beyond a simple 'hairstyle and tomboy issue' as inaccurately portrayed.")

Only a lack of empathy could lead Catholic school officials to fire a beloved teacher for planning to marry the love of his life. Lack of empathy explains how "The "700 Club's" Pat Robertson can be flippant about stoning gay people to death in the days of Jesus, or how Franklin Graham -- Billy Graham's son -- can suggest that LGBT people might adopt children in order to "recruit."

All of these incidents occurred after Pope Francis asked "who am I to judge?" as if ostracizing an elementary school tomboy was the best answer some of the Christian faith had to that question.

On the day the story of the little girl made national headlines, Dan Haseltine, lead singer for the Christian band Jars of Clay, tweeted, "why do I find myself regularly shaking my head, or rolling my eyes at supposed Christian leaders." He followed with, "I am learning that love's most potent manifestation happens when we make room at the table for everyone."

Haseltine's remarks were refreshing, because many Christians in his position prefer silent disapproval in response to over-the-top quotes and head-scratching stories like the one involving the little girl. If you're curious why more and more people are leaving the church, maybe it's because they hear "love the sinner but hate the sin" from the pulpit -- and then see so many followers go about their day as if simply saying the word "love" excused them from actually having to show any.

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Offline jmyrlefuller

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Re: Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?
« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2014, 12:54:01 PM »
or how Franklin Graham -- Billy Graham's son -- can suggest that LGBT people might adopt children in order to "recruit."
This is a true problem, like it or not. I know of mothers who later became lesbians, then openly encouraged their kids to become LGBT as well.
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Offline EC

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Re: Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2014, 01:22:46 PM »
Define persecution.

You see some lad getting his head kicked in because he is gay - that is a case for wading in and condemning as hard as possible. Even Jesus lost his temper and broke out the whip on occasion.   :whistle:

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Offline Olivia

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Re: Will Christians condemn persecution of gays?
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2014, 01:28:22 PM »
I am just as tolerant of gay and lesbians as they are of my Christian beliefs.
We hear all this talk about not judging them when all the time they're judging us if we adhere to our Christian values.
They can live their lives any way they please as long as they don't ask to be married in my Christian church and expect me to accept their lifestyle as normal.
Of course, this is exactly what they want and they're working hard to get it.

They've worked hard to get into the scouts, adopt children, etc., and they're making inroads into our churches.  It's just a matter of time until it will be against the law to deny them access to our pastors that will be forced to marry them or quit.
Again I ask, where is the tolerance and respect for my religion that they want for their lifestyle?

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