Thinking Out Loud

June 12, 2010

When a Man’s Home is not His Castle

When you run a business from your home, does the house then become a public place or is it still, at the end of the day, your home?

That’s the question a Human Rights Tribunal was to have been dealing with this week — the case was postponed to June 18 — in the Canadian province of British Columbia, as reported in the Vancouver Sun:

A British Columbia couple is in the “center of a firestorm” after refusing to provide accommodation to a gay couple have shut down their bed and breakfast despite doing major renovations on their home to facilitate the business.

“We’ve been harassed so bad we’re not running (the B&B),” said Lee Molnar, who lives with his wife Susan in the B.C. community of Grand Forks.

Their lawyer Ronald Smith said they are “devastated” but also feel they can’t continue to operate Grand Forks Riverbend Bed and Breakfast for fear they will be asked again “to violate their religious beliefs” by renting to a gay couple.

Smith is representing the couple in a B.C. Human Rights Tribunal case scheduled to begin Wednesday, but it was postponed.

“They’re just a retired couple in Grand Forks who thought they would open their home to guests and here they are in the centre of a firestorm,” Smith said. “They’re a lovely couple. They don’t want to be thought of as discriminating, but they’re Christians who don’t feel they can violate their religious beliefs.”

The human-rights hearing, scheduled for two days this week in Kelowna, B.C., was postponed Wednesday after the lawyer for the gay couple — Shaun Eadie and Brian Thomas — became ill. A new date has yet to be scheduled.

The hearing will rule on whether Eadie and Thomas, who tried to book a room at the B&B on June 18, 2009, were discriminated against because of their sexual orientation when they were turned away.

According to the complaint, Eadie called the B&B, spoke with Susan Molnar and reserved a room for the following two nights. He was told it would be cash only at $80 per night, which Eadie agreed to pay.

She took their names, Shaun and Brian, and the conversation ended.

About five to 10 minutes later, Lee Molnar called back and asked whether the pair were gay.

When Eadie said yes, Molnar replied “Then this is not going to work out,” according to the complaint filed in July 2009 by the couple.

In an earlier application to have the complaint dismissed, Lee Molnar stated “to allow a gay couple to share a bed in my Christian home would violate my Christian beliefs and would cause me and my wife great distress.”

…Read more: Here

What do you think?   Does the presence of the business render the entire house public, or do homeowners still maintain their rights to accept or reject guests for whatever reason?   To put it another way, do you throw away all personal rights and prerogatives to the use of your own residence when a portion of it has commercial application?

To read what others are saying, check out the over 300 comments on this story at CBC News.

Related item: Story/editorial at Lifesite News.

Related item:  The Edge in Boston likens the story to a similar British case.

(Mildly) Related item:  MacDonalds in France releases a gay-targetted television commercial.

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June 2, 2010

Wednesday Link List

Our link list artist this week is David Hayward, better known as Naked Pastor.   He actually gave away the original water color of this  last week, so with blog giveaways like that, you might just want to become a regular reader.

Off to the links we go…

  • Rick Apperson reviews basketball fundraiser Austin Gutwein’s Take Your Best Shot, at the blog Just a Thought, while the whole genre — including some video clips of Austin — is examined at Christian Book Shop Talk.   Like Zach Hunter, Austin, pictured at right, got into the whole international relief thing at a very, very young age.  If I were still in youth ministry, I think I would build a whole evening around the videos describing what Zach and Austin are doing.
  • The whole Charismatic thing got started in the 1970s, right?   Not exactly.   If you’ve got some time to invest, Brazillian-born Leo Di Siqueira links to a lengthy article that blows apart the “cessationist” view that the supernatural gifts of the Holy Spirit died off with the first apostles.  Writer Nigel Scotland documents examples of the “miracle” gifts occurring in the first five centures of the church.   The link is approximately a 15-page .pdf file.
  • Garrison Keillor explains the book publishing industry for all the children in the audience who are too young to remember what a book is on the pages of The New York Times.    (Here’s a related piece I wrote at my book industry blog.)
  • John Freeman at Ligoner Ministries suggests a balanced approach to dealing with the issue of homosexuality specifically and sexual sins in general; meanwhile…
  • …”When Ray Boltz and Azariah Southworth perform in concert at Covenant of the Cross in Nashville on June 17, 2010, they will kick off a national tour as well as an affirmation of their status as openly gay Christian music artists.”   Continue reading that story in Out and About a gay community blog.    But wait, there’s more…
  • …At the blog Monday Morning Insight, Todd Rhoades posts a piece about Boltz’ new album and some sample song lyrics which invite the broader Christian community to embrace greater tolerance.
  • For the time being, Raymond Hosier can wear his rosary beads to school, as reports the Washington Post.  Now the school in question faces a lawsuit.
  • Once-disgraced Colorado Pastor Ted Haggard announced today he is starting a new church and “will be happy if only a few people join.”  Read about St. James Church at NBC’s Denver affiliate.
  • They sold their house and named their RV after the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan.  This is actually an October, 2009 YouTube clip from Good Morning America, but someone sent it to me, and it is inspiring.
  • By their CD collection you shall know them:  Brett McCracken thinks true “hipsters” would be nostalgic for these contemporary Christian music classics.
  • Many a college or university began life with solid Christian roots which they would sooner forget in the secularized 21st Century; but sometimes, as Mark Roberts points out, the architecture of their older buildings betrays this history.  (My own alma matter, once proudly part of the now liberal United Church of Canada, is emblazoned with, “The Truth Shall Set You Free.”)
  • Trevin Wax had two great links last week:  First, when the Westboro gang decide to picket your church, if you’re in the deep south you serve them food!  Second, a link to Head Heart Hand, which suggests that bloggers are usually either Creators or Curators.
  • Relatively new blog:  Faith and the Law chronicles those times where Christians run afoul of the law in both the U.S. and around the world.
  • Our cartoon this week are from Doug Michael (upper) and Dennis Daniel (lower) at Baptist Press (we’re going to have to put these guys on the payroll…)  What’s with all the first-name last-names at BP?



May 20, 2010

EFC Claims Victory in Christian Horizons Case

I recognize that today’s post won’t be as significant to my largely U.S. readership, but it has major repercussions here in Canada, so I hope you’ll permit me this domestic story.    For context, the EFC (Evangelical Fellowship of Canada) is our version of the NAE (National Association of Evangelicals) which sometimes also fulfills the role taken on in the U.S. by the ACLJ (American Center for Law and Justice) lobbying in Canada’s capital on behalf of Christian ideals.

Over two years ago on this blog, I reported on a complaint filed by Connie Heintz, a former employee of Christian Horizons, a Christian organization which operates group homes for developmentally challenged adults.   The big picture issue was the requirement by CH that employees live up to a lifestyle clause with certain moral or behavioral guidelines.   The complaint was filed with the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal (OHRT), a group with a reputation for never losing; so this was a David vs. Goliath type of battle.

But it was also a battle with large scale implications for Christian (and by extension various other religious groups’) organizations of all stripes, not to mention churches.   The OHRT argued that on the basis of the variety of people being served and on the basis of the government funding received by Christian Horizons. (Read the editorial that is part of the above link, which comprises the second two-thirds of the blog post.)

Wednesday, we received this announcement in an e-mail from EFC, which you can also read online:

OTTAWA – In December 2009, The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC) appeared before the Superior Court of Ontario, Divisional Court, in the landmark religious freedom case, Heintz v. Christian Horizons. The court, which heard an appeal of the decision of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal (OHRT), released its decision late Friday afternoon.

Christian Horizons, a faith-based ministry, employs over 2,500 people to provide housing, care and support to over 1,400 developmentally disabled individuals, and has done so for more than 40 years. This Christian ministry, which requires its employees to sign a Statement of Faith and a Lifestyle and Morality Policy, was the subject of a human rights complaint when a staff member resigned after she felt she could no longer live according to the commitment she made when she signed the policy.

In the decision being appealed, the OHRT had ruled that Christian Horizon’s efforts were not the ministry of a religious community but rather social work and that it, as well as other faith-based bodies serving public needs on a non-discriminatory basis, could no longer require that employees share their religious beliefs and resulting service commitment. The Divisional Court ruled differently and reversed much of the OHRT’s decision.

“This is significant victory for faith-based charities across Canada. While they must clarify certain governing documents and review certain employment policies, they may largely continue to require employee compliance with both statements of faith and lifestyle and morality policies,” said Don Hutchinson, the EFC’s Vice-President and General Legal Counsel.

“We’re relieved to see the court found that the exemption provision in the Ontario Human Rights Code which permits certain charities, including religious charities, to selectively hire employees who share the same beliefs makes no private/public distinction. This means that Christian charities may continue to serve non co-religionists in society all while maintaining their internal religious ethos and integrity,” continued Hutchinson. “I’m relieved that the court recognized that the exemption exists to guarantee the right to free association in this way. This was of serious concern as the OHRT had found otherwise.”

“Of course, we are also disappointed that the Court found it reasonable for the OHRT to have concluded that Christian Horizons did not meet an objective test for a bona fide occupational requirement for Ms. Heintz’s job, but the Court was instructive as to how that situation may be corrected.”

“What does this mean for Christian charities across Canada? Well, it means that it’s time again for them to clarify their statements of faith, lifestyle policies and job descriptions for all employees in order to clearly demonstrate how compliance with both statement of faith and codes of conduct are necessary for and related to job duties.”

This case is huge here, and while Christian Horizons didn’t have the resources to fight this on their own, there was simply too much at stake here for Canadian Christian charities, hence the involvement of EFC.

UPDATE:  Here’s a different perspective on the recent decision from an editorial in Canada’s national newspaper, The National Post.

ALSO: “…But the gay rights group EGALE, which was an intervenor in the court case, also said this week’s ruling was a victory. Lawyer Cynthia Petersen said the ruling would make it hard for religious charities to prove that a person’s sexual orientation or beliefs would get in the way of their duties.”  That quotation is from an article in the Kitchener-Waterloo Record.

FURTHER UPDATE (5.21.10) Here’s a summary of the decision posted on a blog operated by CFPL, the Centre for Faith and Public Life, a division of EFC.

May 17, 2010

Religious News All About Sex and Gender

What makes a religious news story these days?   According to a quick look at the religion page of USAToday on Sunday, it’s all about GLBT issues and sex scandals.   Four out of the five “top news” items fall into that category, as do four of the remaining ten stories, and the featured story about the rally at the Vatican to support the Pope’s handling of the abuse scandal.

You can check the page for yourself anytime, here. Hopefully, in the days to come, you’ll find a “good news” story or something about doctrine or theology.   Right now, editorially, it’s becoming increasingly about a single issue.  In the meantime, please note that Christ followers have many more concerns and activities taking place than what you’re seeing reported.

April 15, 2010

Gay and Christian: The Jennifer Knapp Interview

By the time you read this there will probably be over 300 comments.

Christianity Today posted a long, online interview on Tuesday afternoon in which Jennifer Knapp ends a 7-year media silence, announces her new album, and admits to being involved in a gay relationship for several years, though maintaining it was not a factor in her original decision to take a hiatus.

First of all, let me say that I applaud CT’s decision to run this.   Jennifer Knapp was at the top of the “most wanted ” list of “missing in action” Christian singers.   Turns out she was in Australia for five years, but has been Stateside since September.   Interviewer Mark Moring asked all the right questions and wasn’t afraid to ask a few of the harder questions, too.

The magazine has endured some persecution in the comments, but I was more challenged by their decision to link to a GayChurch.org commentary on the “clobber verses” used against Christian gays.  (The hyperlink doesn’t work however, it’s meant to take you to this page.)  Any “reporting” of this kind is often considered “endorsement;” possibly including the very blog post you’re reading now.

This is the tough issue for the (capital C) Church.   If it hasn’t hit your church yet, it will at some point in the future when you least expect it.   My personal view is that it raises two issues:

  1. Can a person be following Christ and be gay at the same time?  Notice I didn’t say “struggling” with being gay.   Those very same “clobber passages” will yield one answer, but I challenge you to get to know people in this situation and then tell them that they are not moving toward the cross.    It’s complicated I know, and many will mis-read the statement I just made.   Which brings us to the next question…
  2. What is the measure of our compassion and what kind of face does our version of “grace” wear?    Many, if honest, “Hate the sin and hate the sinner.”   That’s just sin of another kind.   I’m not saying that if someone is caught in what we view as sin we should do anything other than what scripture says, “restore them gently,” but when and how we do this is going to say a lot more about us as local church or as the (capital C) Church in general than it’s going to say about the gay person.

In the meantime, the new album, Letting Go releases May 11, though she says. “The Christian bookstore thing is probably not going to happen; this isn’t a Christian record, and it’s not going to be marketed to Christian radio.”  Jennifer is back on tour, describing her audience in these words:

My concerts right now include the ultra-conservative hand raisers that are going to make this bar their worship zone. And there’s a guy over on the left having one too many, and there’s a gay couple over on the right. That’s my dream scenario. I love each and every one of them. At the end of the day, it’s music.

Her Wikipedia article claims that she recently announced tour dates with Derek Webb.    This blog mentioned Webb’s appearance at the Gay Christian Network conference early in the year.    Chris, a gay blogger writing about Webb drew this comment from Jon:

I was at said gay christian conference in Nashville this year, when Derek Webb said “If the church were to force me to pick sides [about where he stands on homosexuality], I’d be on y’all [gay people] side”. We also have very popular Christian speakers coming there. This year we had Tony Campolo as our keynote, next year, we have Philip Yancey as the keynote. Those names mean nothing to people who aren’t a part of evangelical subculture, but in the evangelical world, those are big names coming to talk at the Gay Christian Network conference.

(Sometimes these blog posts evolve as I’m writing — suddenly we find Philip Yancey’s name invoked in connection with next year’s conference.)

Another Gay blogger posts the lyrics to Webb’s What Matters More along with the music video.    I recall Webb saying at the time — but cannot locate it for you here — that he had a friend who was gay, possibly referring to Knapp.

I recognize that I’ve probably given more space to this issue than some feel it deserves, and there will be blog readers who think I’m being soft on the moral issues of homosexuality.  I’m just trying to take the focus off item #1 above and focus on item #2.

The point I want to make is that there are a number — a growing number — of people out there who are truly striving to understand what it means to be a follower of Christ but are also involved in a gay relationship, are dealing with the issue of friends who have come out, or are dealing with latent gay feelings.   Some of these were gay before they investigated Christianity, others were Christians before they confronted with the gay issue.

This issue matters.   How we interpret scripture is one thing.   Most people reading this blog would agree that scripture is very clear on this issue.   How we respond to gay and gay-inclined people in the Church at large is a very, very different issue altogether.   In fact, a poor, wrong or ill-chosen response could leave us in as sinful a state as those we would condemn.

And remember, you can’t obsess about Paul said about homosexuality and ignore what Jesus said about materialism.  And gluttony.  And hypocrisy.  And worry.  And so on…

Here’s the CT link again to the Knapp interview that started all this.

Two really good blog posts at Mere Orthodoxy on this topic:  The Objectification of Jennifer Knapp (April 13) and Why Jennifer Knapp Matters (April 14). Also Justin Wise’s post at BeDeviant, Unfriending Jennifer Knapp.   As of 10 PM last night, these were the only mentions in Alltop Church and Christianity pages, but you’ll find dozens of blog posts at this WordPress link.

UPDATE – JANUARY 2011 — At the end of 2010, I was asked to be part of a blog tour for a definitive book on this subject, Turning Controversy into Church Ministry by W. P. Campbell.  You can find my review of a small section of the book, and links to the rest of the blog tour here.

April 5, 2010

Bus Ads: A New Twist On An Old Media


What is it with Evangelism and buses?

First there was last year’s Atheist bus advertising in London which spun off similar campaigns elsewhere.  (And this bus ad of our own!)

Now it’s Toronto.   An organization called Bus Stop Bible Studies ran a series of transit ads with one of them — asking “Does God Care if I’m Gay” — sparking outrage both from without and within the Evangelical community, to the point where the website for that particular topic in the series has been pulled offline.

Here’s the story as it appeared in The Toronto Star;   a look at some of the content of the online response as it appears at Torontoist.com, who we also thank for the above picture; and a blogitorial from Wendy Gritter of New Direction, a ministry organization to the gay and lesbian community, who wishes her group had been consulted first.    (New Direction’s DVD was featured in this blog’s link list in July, 2009.)

A year ago, while doing some further editing to my resource on pornography, I spent some time reading the blogs of people who were both identifying as gay and also identifying as passionate about Jesus Christ.   The more I learn about this issue and get to know people through their online writing, the more complex it becomes, and the more I know I know I need to learn.

I wonder if the Bus Stop Bible Studies advertising blitz would have been more effective if they had left this particular issue out of it.   Now the one particular topic — there were 24 altogether — has become a flashpoint, though it certainly brought publicity and awareness to the larger series of advertisements.

Related comments at RH (Reproductive Health) Reality Check.

January 16, 2010

Gay Christian Network Conference: Not-So Full Coverage

I don’t really want to wade into the larger topic of people who have affirmed their homosexuality and at the same time affirmed their faith in Jesus Christ.   It’s a big issue, and I’ve known people on both sides of it.

I just want to know how both the bloggers and the online news media missed the conference held earlier this month in Nashville.

A “before” article in Out and About on January 1st announces the then forthcoming conference, “We’ve heard from many individuals in the music industry, particularly those in the Christian music industry who struggle with the intersection of their faith and sexuality,” Lee said. “So Nashville just made sense.”.    The next day the Athiest Nexus takes a shot at the upcoming meeting, “it’s like, ‘Vegetarian Sausage-makers conference planned…'”

Then, on January 14th, an “after” article at Change.Org reports on the event that was attended by about 400 people, “We see religious groups like the National Organization for Marriage or the institutional Catholic Church extolling the virtues homophobia. But it’s equally important to remember that there’s a huge population of folks who practice a theology that says it’s not only OK to be LGBT, it’s something religion should embrace.”

A day later, another post at Freedom2B reports on the address given by one of the speakers, a guy you may have heard of.

And that’s why this matters.   You see if 400 gay people want to meet in Nashville and discuss their Christian faith, that’s not really news, and I shouldn’t expect media — either bloggers or mainstream — to cover this.

But this conference featured Christian mainstream personalities TONY CAMPOLO and DEREK WEBB; which brings this event onto our radar screen.   It reminds me of when I was writing a Canada column for CCM Magazine, and my editor said, “We don’t really want your news, we just want to hear about our artists who happen to be touring your country.”

So basically this isn’t about the conference itself, but about the spotlight and the legitimacy created for it when Christian authors or musicians show up.   Campolo, albeit, somewhat expectedly; Webb whose song ‘What Matters More’ resulted in him shopping for a new label for his recent Stockholm Syndrome.

As I said at the beginning, I don’t want to discuss the “gay and Christian” issue so much as I want to say that I think this was probably a significant event that the blogosphere didn’t document.  So the question is, Why?  I have a theory…

November 2, 2009

Editing The Bible To Suit Your Lifestyle

Filed under: bible, issues — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 8:34 pm

This appeared today at WORLDmag.com; I’m reproducing the whole piece — it’s only four paragraphs — because I couldn’t really leave anything out.    You can also read it here.

Ripping the Bible

Written by Mickey McLean
November 2, 2009

In an interview with Details magazine, openly gay actor Ian McKellen admits that when he stays in hotels he finds the in-room Bible and tears out the page condemning homosexuality:

I’m not proudly defacing the book, but it’s a choice between removing that page and throwing away the whole Bible. And I’m not really the first: I got delivered a package of 40 of those pages—Leviticus 18:22—that had been torn out by a married couple I know. They put them on a bit of string so that I could hang it up in the bathroom.

Apparently he and his fans leave Paul’s letters addressing this issue alone, including passages from Romans, 1 Corinthians, and 1 Timothy. But the man who’s best known for playing Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings and his followers can tear out all the pages they want because…

“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever” (Isaiah 40:8).

July 16, 2009

Sexual Preferences in the 21st Century

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 7:40 am
Choosing Your Sexual Preference in the 21st Century

Dan: Hey, whaddya say you, me, Pamela and her sister go on a double date tonight?

Don: C’mon, eh; you know I’m gay.

Dan: Know what?  I didn’t know any such thing.  How did you decide you were gay?

Don: I wasn’t sure, so I took a survey online.

Dan: Okay… By any chance did the survey have ten questions?

Don: Yeah!  How did you know?

Dan: Everybody knows that survey.   It asks some dumb questions, and then, no matter what answers you give, it says, ‘You are definitely gay.’

Don: It doesn’t matter?

Dan: Not at all.   Actually, they took that site down about a month ago.   When did you do the survey?

Don: Over two years ago.

Dan: [long silence]  Oh, my.

Don: [longer silence]

In a world where psychologists would have us believe that being gay is a matter of genetic predisposition, in many cases, it’s actually the product of much more random factors.

I’ve developed this idea more fully in things I’ve posted to other blogs, but you can read the original germ of the idea in a chapter of my book, The Pornography Effect.  (Click the header when the chapter appears if you want to read the whole thing from beginning to end; it takes only 45 minutes.)

If you’re reading this, and you believe you are same sex attracted, consider the possibility that we all start out somewhat asexual (not bisexual) and that preferences are formed as a result of “who gets to us first.”    I’m not trying to undermine what you believe you are, or try to preach to you about what you could be;  I’m simply asking you to think back and reconsider what might have been. I’m just wanting to ask the question, “Is it possible that more random factors were at work?   That some early sexual fulfillment was used as the basis as for a broader statement as to who you are?”

June 9, 2009

Same Sex Attracted

It is sweeping North America.  It is a cause of contention within families.   It’s a condition based on lifestyle choices that are rooted in sin and lack of self control giving way to desires and passions.   The behavior becomes addictive and consuming.   The worst result, of course, is a disease that can be severe and debilitating and even bring death.

The condition is obesity, the sin is gluttony, and the disease is diabetes.

(Inspired from reading chapter 5 in unChristian.)

-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-

Today’s post is a continuation from yesterday’s, where I tried to explain the influence of the internet in shaping sexual preferences, so that regular readers of this blog — mostly interested in Christian news and opinion — will better understand the rapid growth of same sex attraction.

Dave Kinnaman in his book unChristian (Baker Books) suggests a number of ways in which the Church (capital C) and local churches (small c) can do better when interacting with people who are ‘out’ in the gay community, as well as people struggling with same sex attraction:

unChristian borderedAcknowledge the Complexity

“The biblical response to homosexuals should be to deal with the fundamental needs that all men and woman have.   We just acknowledge that everyone has sexual baggage but also the potential for sexual wholeness.   There are major problems across the spectrum of sexuality that the church needs to address…

“Being “against ” gays and lesbians is not a flag to wave… Sexuality should not be seen as dualistic — all good or all bad — but as a good part of our created nature that is constantly in need of repair…

Open Doors With Conversations

“A vital element of engaging homosexuals is to elevate the importance of conversations.   Christians expect overnight results and are impatient with the need to develop deep, candid relationships and interactions of trust…

Treat Other Christians With Respect

“Christians need to downgrade the importance of being antihomosexual as a “credential” proving that we are more faithful to God than anyone else is…   We need to be more concerned about reaching those who need Jesus than “proving” our faith to those who already claim to know Jesus…

Have the Right Perspective

“We should not give up channels of influence, such as politics, just because our stand might cause negative perceptions, but we must pursue our efforts in those arenas with integrity, respect and love for people.

“…Despite widespread mobilization over the last decade, most Christians have become even more isolated from homosexuals…  Gays and lesbians should not be surprised to find us working side by side with them to address HIV/AIDS and to end workplace discrimination in nonreligious settings.

Express Concern for Kids

“…It’s offensive to homosexuals to say that a child needs both a father and a mother; it’s a difficult part of what Christians believe.   However, though this is an important conviction, Christians have to avoid rhetoric that dehumanizes people, especially in interpersonal interactions.   Our most important concern must be the response of young people to Christ, not merely what type of home they grew up in.

Have Compassion

“…Our words in an us-versus-them world can be weapons we use against outsiders, especially Gays…  It is easy to decry political correctness, but it is much more difficult to abide by the biblical concept of guarding our tongues and being accountable for what we communicate to others.   It is easy to learn what words are offensive and simply avoid them; it is much harder to find meaningful ways to speak the truth in love…”

~from unChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks about Christianity, by David Kinnaman with Gabe Lyons, 2007, Baker Books

If addiction to internet pornography is a factor in the life of someone you know and care about, be sure to check out my own resource, The Pornography Effect which is posted online for free reading.

If you are someone who is same sex attracted: Again, as I said yesterday, some  Christians have not been at all charitible in dealing with this issue, and maybe dealing with you personally.   For that, I am sorry.   I think that many in the Church thought that with enough opposition, this issue would simply go away.   It didn’t, and in the Western world, it’s here to stay.   Please be patient as we who are older, as well as the next generation of Christ-followers learn what it means to have the compassion that Jesus had in caring  for those who came to him; as well as dealing with the issues that we have in our own lives. And re-read yesterdays post with an open mind, considering the possibility that where you find yourself today may have actually been somewhat random; a consequence of who got there first at a vulnerable time in your life.

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