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PART 2 (page 19 of 34)
What Jesus Did Say
By Their Fruit You Will Recognize Them
Recognizing
Gay and Lesbians as Quality Parents
Do God and Truth Mean The Same Thing?

But Jesus did say in Matthew 7:16 - 18 (New International Version) “By their fruit you will recognize them. . . . . . . . . every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.” Paul applied this principle by specifying exactly what we should look for when seeking evidence of the presence of the Holy Spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.” (Galatians 5:22-23-New International Version). These characteristics are precisely what can be seen in abundance in the lives of Christian homosexuals or bisexuals throughout the world living either in the closet (with no one or only a few people knowing of their sexual orientation) or completely out in the open. (1)

 

The Fruit of the Spirit is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-Control

Qualified Gay and Lesbian Parents Bring All Of The Above Qualities To The Role Of Parenting

Just As Qualified Straight Parents Do

Gay and Lesbian Parents - How Do They Measure Up?
It has been noted in the latest research that the majority of children raised by gay or lesbian parents turn out to be straight and are just as well-adjusted as kids raised in homes with 2 heterosexual parents, which would seem to argue strongly against the claim that children are more likely to be drawn into homosexuality if they are exposed to positive gay role models.  And as an added note, The American Psychological Association has stated that "there is no scientific evidence that parenting effectiveness is related to parental sexual orientation: lesbian and gay parents are as likely as heterosexual parents to provide supportive and healthy environments for their children".

 

As further evidence of the normalcy and high quality of the parenting of qualified gays and lesbians please read the following article "The Way we Live Now - What's Good For The Kids" by By Lisa Belkin that appeared in the New York Times on November 5, 2009.

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The Way We Live Now
What’s Good for the Kids

 

It has been apparent for a while now that we live in child-centric times. We approach parenting with a single-mindedness that baffles our own parents, and certainly their parents, who thought children should be seen and not heard. We think it’s just fine to put our kids ahead of our careers, our relationships, our social lives, and even if we aren’t doing so, everyone around us seems to be.


We demand that public policy — on health care, or education, or stimulus money — consider the needs of children as surely as it does the needs of doctors, teachers and businesses. (I am not saying that public policy makers always respond, mind you, but “what about the children?” is certainly a rallying cry.)  We devour research on how to build our children’s self-esteem, to keep them from being bullied and to expand their intellects.


It is striking, then, how comparatively rarely children are mentioned as an argument in favor of gay marriage. The issue is framed as a debate over equality and justice, of personal freedom and the relation of church and state, not about what is good for kids.


That’s partly because, until relatively recently, we didn’t know much about the children of same-sex couples. The earliest studies, dating to the 1970s, were based on small samples and could include only families who stepped forward to be counted. But about 20 years ago, the Census Bureau added a category for unwed partners, which included many gay partners, providing more demographic data. Not every gay couple that is married, or aspiring to marry, has children, but an increasing number do: approximately 1 in 5 male same-sex couples and 1 in 3 female same-sex couples are raising children, up from 1 in 20 male couples and 1 in 5 female couples in 1990.


This growth, coupled with the passage of time, means there is a large cohort of children who are now old enough to yield solid data. And the portrait emerging tells us something about the effects of gay parenting. It also contains lessons for all parents.


“These children do just fine,” says Abbie E. Goldberg, an assistant professor in the department of psychology at Clark University, who concedes there are some who will continue to believe that gay parents are a danger to their children, in spite of a growing web of psychological and sociological evidence to the contrary. Her new book, “Lesbian and Gay Parents and Their Children,” is an analysis of more than 100 academic studies, most looking at groups of 30 to 150 subjects, and primarily on lesbian mothers, though of late there is a spike in research about gay fathers.


In most ways, the accumulated research shows, children of same-sex parents are not markedly different from those of heterosexual parents. They show no increased incidence of psychiatric disorders, are just as popular at school and have just as many friends. While girls raised by lesbian mothers seem slightly more likely to have more sexual partners, and boys slightly more likely to have fewer, than those raised by heterosexual mothers, neither sex is more likely to suffer from gender confusion nor to identify themselves as gay.


More enlightening than the similarities, however, are the differences, the most striking of which is that these children tend to be less conventional and more flexible when it comes to gender roles and assumptions than those raised in more traditional families.


There are data that show, for instance, that daughters of lesbian mothers are more likely to aspire to professions that are traditionally considered male, like doctors or lawyers — 52 percent in one study said that was their goal, compared with 21 percent of daughters of heterosexual mothers, who are still more likely to say they want to be nurses or teachers when they grow up. (The same study found that 95 percent of boys from both types of families choose the more masculine jobs.) Girls raised by lesbians are also more likely to engage in “roughhousing” and to play with “male-gendered-type toys” than girls raised by straight mothers. And adult children of gay parents appear more likely than the average adult to work in the fields of social justice and to have more gay friends in their social mix.


Heterosexual couples might want to pay attention to these results. While the gay-marriage debate is playing out on the public stage, a more private debate is taking place in kitchens and bedrooms over who does what in a heterosexual marriage (takes out the trash, spends more time with the kids, feels free to head out with their friends for a beer). The philosophical underpinnings of both conversations — gay marriage and equality in parenting — are similar, in that both focus on equality for adults (in the case of heterosexuals, mostly wives). But even if parents who seek parity do so for their own sanity and in pursuit of their own ideals, might it not also be better for their children?


Yes, if less conventional, more tolerant children are your goal. Because if the children of gays and lesbians are different, it is presumably related to the way they were raised — by parents with a view of domestic roles that differs from most of their heterosexual peers.


Same-sex couples, it seems, are less likely to impose certain gender-based expectations on their children, says M. V. Lee Badgett, director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and author of “When Gay People Get Married: What Happens When Societies Legalize Same-Sex Marriage.” Studies of lesbian parents have found that they “are more feminist parents,” she says, “more open to girls playing with trucks and boys playing with dolls,” with fewer worries about conforming to perceived norms.

 
They are also, by definition, less likely to impose gender-based expectations on themselves. “Same-sex parents tend to be more equal in parenting,” Goldberg says, while noting that no generalization can apply to all parents of any sexual orientation. On the whole, though, lesbian mothers (there’s little data here on gay dads) tend not to divide chores and responsibilities according to gender-based roles, Goldberg says, “because you have taken gender out the equation. There’s much more fluidity than in many heterosexual relationships.”

 
So while we arguably spend too much time focusing on children, when it comes to the topic of nontraditional marriage, maybe we should start focusing on them more. One of the few parenting conversations that is not child-centric might be well served to become so. These are questions of rights and equality for adults, yes, but also questions of what is good for the kids.

Lisa Belkin is a contributing writer to the New York Times and the author of the Motherlode blog.
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Do God and Truth Mean The Same Thing?

I was very impressed with the following that I read in Beyond Acceptance - Parents of Lesbians & Gays Talking About Their Experiences by Carolyn Welch Griffin, Marian J. Wirth & Arthur G. Wirth on pages 85 and 86:

[This is] a statement by a young gay man from Dignity, an organization of Catholic gay people with whom our P-FLAG cooperates.  He shares the anguish of a personal question: How, in the name of religion, can he be asked to deny one of the deepest truths of his nature - his homosexuality?

He works toward a resolution by contemplating a statement from Mahatma Gandhi: "Inside each of us God has written His clearest messages."

Gandhi was one of those remarkable people appearing from time to time on our planet, whose teachings and lives have a profound impact.  Gandhi said, "There is no other God than truth.  I worship God as truth only." And "To me, in its largest sense, religion means self-realization or knowledge of self."

Those of us who are gay should be able to appreciate what Gandhi was saying.  Despite the conviction of many religious leaders that they know the truth about homosexuality, we who are gay know that their easy answers just do not make sense to our reality.

How many of these religious leaders with the "answers" know even the most fundamental facts about homosexuality?  How many of them have really listened to our stories? 

The particular interpretation these people give to certain Bible passages conflicts with the nature God has given us.  It is the God of the Bible who has created us with the gift of loving others of the same gender in an emotional, spiritual, and sexual way.  Many of us, in order to survive as sane humans, have had to ultimately reject the condemnatory statements of leaders who act as though they are wiser than Gandhi, Jesus, or the Buddha. 

To find answers, to come close to the truth, we have to practice the kind of religion Gandhi practices. We have to look into ourselves, into our nature.  It is inside each of us that God has written the clearest messages.  

If we are seeking the truth, we also know that it is not easy seeing beyond the homophobia inside us.  We have to seek, to look within, if we want to follow the path of Jesus, the Buddha, and Gandhi.  They were not wedded to doctrines and dogmas, but to the pursuit of truth.  (2)


And one final note from Gary Lynn: Jesus himself never once mentioned homosexuality, but He did mention Love, a lot. In John 13:34-35 (NLT) He said "Now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

 

Click Here for What Parents of Gay and Lesbian Teens need to Know about Suicide - What Are The Warning Signs?

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Footnotes:
(1) Miner Jeff (pastor of the Jesus Metropolitan Community Church in Indianapolis, Indiana), John Tyler Connoley (who recently completed a Masters in Biblical Studies at Earlham School of Religion-A Quaker University) “The Children are Free”, Indianapolis, Indiana, Jesus Metropolitan Community Church, 2002, pages 81 and 83.
(2) Kevin O'Shea, Dignity Newsletter, 3, no. 3 (April 1, 1983) Footnote on page 88 of
, "Beyond Acceptance: Parents of Lesbians & Gays Talk About Their Experiences" by Carolyn Welch Griffin, Marian J. Wirth & Arthur G. Wirth, New York, St. Martin's Griffin, 1996
 


A Gay Teen Short Story ♂♂
GOD MADE ME THIS WAY by Grant Bentley

Church is so confusing for Zack.  His new pastor preaches nothing but hate and condemnation of gays and lesbians, but no matter how carefully he reads his Bible, he can’t find where it says God hates him.  Will things change when Zach's boyfriend Billy suggests that they all go to his church instead?    Click Here or on the icon to read the story.

 


Click for Page 20 - What The Bible Says For All His Children Today - Is The Homosexual Our Neighbor?
                          President Signs Repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
                          Gary Lynn's Declaration
                          Technical Sergeant Leonard Matlovich (1943–1988)
                          The Wedding Between Tech Sgt. Erwynn Umali and Will Behrens


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Click below to go to:
The Anti-Gay Religious Right's Really Cruel and Idiotic Argument
Their Message to a Gay Person is: Be alone. Live alone. Die alone.

 


Click for Homosexuality is neither a Choice nor a Sin - Table of contents

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