Gay Chatroulette is not their mission.. He felt called to the Christian development agency’s mission, spoke about it to donors, traveled to Sri Lanka to see the work up close and donated tens of thousands of dollars through his public relations company, Zum Communications. At 45, he had just unearthed a secret he had kept even from himself: He was gay.
The revelation forced CRISTA’s hand on an issue that is becoming harder and harder to ignore at a time when LGBTQ rights are widely accepted by the general public, and same-sex couples are getting married across the country. Legally, religious groups fall into a separate category: Discrimination is allowed. It quietly flourishes, fed by convictions many see as dictated by faith and revered for thousands of years.
2018 marked 40 years since the death of #LGBTQ rights icon Harvey Milk.
We continue to celebrate his leadership and legacy. His tireless work to advance equality endures to this day. https://t.co/IrqY8robNm
Yet a growing number of gays belonging to various faiths are challenging traditional theology and opening up discussions with even the most conservative believers.
“I am a Christian,” Young said. “I just happen to be a gay Christian.”
Some organizations are wondering: Do we just ride this out for a while?” said Tim Dearborn, who is the retired director of the Ogilvie Institute of Preaching at Fuller Seminary, in California, and a former World Vision executive who left before the 2014 controversy. “But I think that’s increasingly difficult to do.
We didn’t have any words around the theology,” Linda Robertson said as she recounted how she and her husband stopped trying to change their gay son as the teenager descended into despair and drug addiction. The Redmond couple just knew what they had been doing was “so egregiously wrong.
People are not asked to serve a second term for all kinds of reasons, he continued, and those in this particular case were confidential.
World Concern’s reticence is not unusual.
Kent Thomas said when he came out several years ago and was fired from his job in the foster-care program at the Tacoma chapter of Youth for Christ — an organization that supports young people in schools, correctional facilities and elsewhere — officials there “very much wanted it to remain quiet.”
In other words, what is the point of you and I being here in this world at this time during our assigned life spans?
This is a question that most of us ask ourselves occasionally or at least once at some point in our lives. And I’m finding that at my age I think about it a lot. As a follower of Christ with a strong and active line of communication with God (“prayer life” in Church speak), I believe that He wants me to make a positive difference in this world while I’m here, to unselfishly leave this world a little better place because I was here.
I have already had the fortunate opportunity to do many useful things for others that have given my life much meaning, but God’s not through with me yet. I believe that He has led me to the conclusion that my life, with all its accumulated experiences of good times and bad, things done right and things done wrong, has taught me many things and that these lessons don’t have to just stay with me.
Maybe one more small accomplishment I can make in my life is to pass on to you the reader, the truthfulness of the above headlines, the most important of all of the lessons of my life. If I open the eyes and change the mind of just one person on this controversial topic, that would be good enough for me.
At 75 years of age now, many of the specific details of my difficult youth lived as a bisexual have been lost to the effects of a declining memory that was never very good to start out with. But the memories of my feelings of self-hate, shame and guilt beginning in my middle to late teenage years will always be with me. Why was I drawn into looking at the other boys changing clothes in the locker room before and after gym class starting in Junior High? Why couldn’t I be like other boys who exclusively liked girls? I liked girls alright, but it was my attraction to boys that caused me so much distress. I desperately didn’t want to be this way, an embarrassment, a bisexual. But I just was what I was and I couldn’t change who I was attracted to no matter how hard I tried. I just was. . . .
These painful feelings haunted me because of my upbringing in various Independent Christian Churches (Church of Christ) located around Los Angeles, California (these included the Inglewood First Christian Church in Inglewood, California and the Knott Avenue Christian Church in Anaheim, California) who proclaimed then and still do that “God’s word says that Homosexuality is against His Plan.” As a result of my church’s teaching I believed that I was defective, that I was in danger of spending eternity in Hell and that I was not good enough for God to love me. Going to church for me was not much fun. But it was all I knew to do so I soldiered on.
As a personal comment here: As you will see in this web site I have recently found out thatthe Bible does not say that homosexuality is against His Plan. In fact all of His committed followers are in His Plan. God does not play favorites as between His Heterosexual and Homosexual Children. Acts 10:34-35 (New Living Translation) Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God doesn’t show partiality. In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.”and Galatians 3:28 (New Living Translation) “There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus.“
After I turned 11, my father’s side of the family pretty much helped make up in the three months of the summer when I stayed with them for what was lacking in the other nine months that I was with my mother and step-father in North Hollywood and later La Mirada, California. My father and step-mother on their farm in California’s San Joaquin Valley (Strathmore, Calif. & Porterville, Calif.) and my paternal grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins in Redlands, Calif. were generally warm and loving people as contrasted with the distant and cold fish that made up my mother’s side of the family whose motto seemed to be, “serious people don’t do hugs.” But whether I got hugs or didn’t get hugs, I found out by their comments towards the end of their lives that all 4 of my parents would have completely rejected and disowned me as a bisexual teenager or man if I had been completely honest about my orientation with any of them. In the end their love for me wasn’t as important as their reputations or “What would their neighbors, friends and the family think if they found out?”
As a teen, I’m sure that they would have sent me to a “Christian” therapist to get my head straightened out as Mother had an inflated view of what psychologists and psychiatrists could do back then. And remember that back in the 50’s and 60’s nobody knew anything about homosexuality except that it was thought to be a mental illness, and/or a choice and a disgusting depravity. The first important books and studies by respected theologians, psychologists, psychiatrists, social scientists, anthropologists and other academics that began to seriously question all those hurtful and unfounded beliefs regarding gays weren’t written until the 1980’s and 1990’s.
And if I had been honest that I was still a bisexual after all the treatments (since one’s sexuality can not be changed as the overwhelming majority of the mental health community now knows), all 4 of my parents would have wanted nothing more to do with me. Yes, I would have lost my family and been out in the street because that was just the way my folks were, well-meaning but too sure of themselves people limited by the knowledge of their times. And without a home base and a family I couldn’t have gotten any of the education and jobs I was later able to get. My life in effect would have virtually ceased to exist as it did for others who were more honest about their sexuality.
Now back to my life as it was back then . . . . and though I did have a few honest-to-goodness girlfriends as a teenager and a young man, as a bisexual I wound up never being able to commit myself to a partner, either male or female, even briefly. And to show you how desperate I was to fit in to “normal” society, at about 26 years of age I spent 500 dollars (worth about a 1,000 dollars or more now) on a computer dating club trying to solve my “problem” by trying to find just the right woman, because I figured finding the right woman was the key to solving everything, right? Wrong. Because week after week, dating different hopeful women for over 10 months led me nowhere except more frustration. Was I sexually attracted to many of them? Sure. But the idea of actually living with any one of them had no appeal for me at all. And though I was attracted to several men I met over the years, the idea of setting up house with any of them was just as unappealing. Plus because of the social stigma attached to the idea of 2 men living together as a homosexual couple in the 1960s, I never seriously considered that as an option. So the conflicting feelings continued just as they had been way back in junior high. But though my 4 parents were always suspicious of me, they would never know for sure during their lifetimes about my orientation. I have made a concerted effort over the last few years to forgive them in my prayers in order to truly put that part of my life behind me. Redemption I got a bachelors degree majoring in Accounting from San Diego State University after an obligatory 22 month stay in the Army and even worked hard and passed the required exam and became a CPA. But I turned out to be a lousy accountant and looked around to find out what God really had in mind for my life. I became a lay youth leader in 2 Los Angeles area Christian churches (Westwood Hills Christian Church, Dr. Myron Taylor-pastor; Little Brown Church, Rev. John Wells & Rev. Dr. Laurence Keene-pastors) after figuring out I had an ability for interacting with teens and by working in temporary accounting jobs I was able to support myself and to pay for most of the expenses incurred with the groups for over 7 years.
We made some really good memories together as a group: Sunday school classes, Summer and Winter camps in the mountains, weekend get-togethers in the snow at Big Bear Lake, hiking adventures in the Sierras, playing tennis, work trips to an orphanage in Tijuana, Mexico, etc. The parents of these teenagers trusted me with the physical, spiritual and emotional well being of their precious children and I did everything I possible could to honor that trust. The family in particular took me into their home, hearts and lives with some extra special hospitality that I will never forget.