Pastor behind church’s North Carolina Amendment 1 apology billboard speaks

Missiongathering Christian Church in California – in response to the passage of Amendment 1 which recently defined marriage in North Carolina’s state constitution as between one man and one woman in addition to banning other types of domestic legal unions such as civil unions and domestic partnerships – has sponsored a billboard erected in Charlotte, North Carolina on Billy Graham Parkway which reads “Missiongathering Christian Church is sorry for the narrow-minded, judgmental, deceptive, manipulative actions of those who denied rights & equality to so many in the name of God,” provides a link to a Facebook page and contains the phrase ‘in response to Amendment 1.’ Alex Roller, Spiritual Formation Pastor of Missiongathering Christian Church, comments for this article.

Missiongathering Christian Church, in stark contrast with various other Christian churches, both supports same-sex marriage and rejects the idea that homosexuality is a sin. Roller, a gay person himself, approaches scripture differently than – as he explains – many fundamentalist and conservative churches which believe that biblical verses condemn LGBT persons. A more academic and thoughtful understanding [explained here, by the church] of the cultural contexts and wider message of Jesus’ teachings, Roller notes, should lead people away from a literalistic interpretation of commonly cited verses which appear, to some, to condemn homosexuals.

Cultural influences, family history, generalizations, fear and lack of understanding – Roller says – might account for what seems to be a disconnect between people — whether they be pastors or lay churchgoers — who have a literalistic and condemning interpretation of scripture as opposed to those who do not. Roller, though, is optimistic about cultural change because he is noticing churches growing and progressing while also noticing the news media doing a better job of accurately portraying LGBT people so that people can have a better understanding of LGBT persons.
More information about Missiongathering Christian Church can be found on their website. Information specifically pertaining to their billboard in North Carolina can be found on their 'Our Hearts Are With You' Facebook page which includes a frequently asked questions page in addition to an explanation of their theological views concerning the Bible and homosexuality.


justin vacula
Scranton Atheism Examiner
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Pastor behind church’s North Carolina Amendment 1 apology billboard speaks

Missiongathering Christian Church in California – in response to the passage of Amendment 1 which recently defined marriage in North Carolina’s state constitution as between one man and one woman in addition to banning other types of domestic legal unions such as civil unions and domestic partnerships – has sponsored a billboard erected in Charlotte, North Carolina on Billy Graham Parkway which reads “Missiongathering Christian Church is sorry for the narrow-minded, judgmental, deceptive, manipulative actions of those who denied rights & equality to so many in the name of God,” provides a link to a Facebook page and contains the phrase ‘in response to Amendment 1.’ Alex Roller, Spiritual Formation Pastor of Missiongathering Christian Church, comments for this article.

Missiongathering Christian Church, in stark contrast with various other Christian churches, both supports same-sex marriage and rejects the idea that homosexuality is a sin. Roller, a gay person himself, approaches scripture differently than – as he explains – many fundamentalist and conservative churches which believe that biblical verses condemn LGBT persons. A more academic and thoughtful understanding [explained here, by the church] of the cultural contexts and wider message of Jesus’ teachings, Roller notes, should lead people away from a literalistic interpretation of commonly cited verses which appear, to some, to condemn homosexuals.

Cultural influences, family history, generalizations, fear and lack of understanding – Roller says – might account for what seems to be a disconnect between people — whether they be pastors or lay churchgoers — who have a literalistic and condemning interpretation of scripture as opposed to those who do not. Roller, though, is optimistic about cultural change because he is noticing churches growing and progressing while also noticing the news media doing a better job of accurately portraying LGBT people so that people can have a better understanding of LGBT persons.

More information about Missiongathering Christian Church can be found on their website. Information specifically pertaining to their billboard in North Carolina can be found on their 'Our Hearts Are With You' Facebook page which includes a frequently asked questions page in addition to an explanation of their theological views concerning the Bible and homosexuality.

Scranton Atheism Examiner

The day the world comes out for tolerance





On International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, Jerome Taylor and Liam O’Brien explain why it’s time for change


When Barack Obama came out in support of gay marriage earlier this month, there were many who heralded it as a turning point in the history of equal rights. Symbolism plays a major part in the struggle for acceptance. Just as John F Kennedy finally adopted the cause of the civil rights movement, the gay rights lobby can now claim that the White House is officially on side (even if it suspects Mr Obama had been so privately for a long time).

Legislative change is what finally frees a victimised group from state-sanctioned discrimination. But laws tend only to be altered once a significant bulk of the population accepts, tolerates and even celebrates a community’s differences.
Today’s International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia is a key part of keeping the gay rights flame alive. All over the world people will make small actions which, taken as a whole, remind us of the victories won and also the amount of work that needs to be done.
"[The day] brings to attention just how much homophobia and transphobia there is in the world," said Lance Price, executive director of the Kaleidoscope Trust, which campaigns on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues. "Huge strides have been made in the UK and other countries, but elsewhere the challenges are massive."
Often it seems that international days to promote causes are picked arbitrarily – but there is a good reason why today represents the fight against sexual prejudice. It was on 17 May 1990 that the World Health Organisation finally removed homosexuality from its “International Classification of Diseases” list.
The world has come a long way. Civil unions, gay marriages, the repeal of discriminatory laws and punishments for homosexuality have gathered pace across the world. Even in the US, where evangelical Christianity clamours to dominate the debate over sexuality, the acceptance of gay relationships has undergone a radical transformation. Ten years ago, an average of just 45 per cent of Americans supported gay marriage; now that figure is an average of 56 per cent.
But the picture is not all pink. There are still at least five countries which retain the death penalty for homosexuality, while almost half of Africa’s 52 nations impose criminal punishment.
"We have come so far, and we have a responsibility to try to challenge these things elsewhere," says Matthew Todd, the editor of Attitude magazine. "It’s a simple human rights issue."



JEROME TAYLOR  , LIAM O’BRIEN

 

 

THURSDAY 17 MAY 2012

The day the world comes out for tolerance

On International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, Jerome Taylor and Liam O’Brien explain why it’s time for change

When Barack Obama came out in support of gay marriage earlier this month, there were many who heralded it as a turning point in the history of equal rights. Symbolism plays a major part in the struggle for acceptance. Just as John F Kennedy finally adopted the cause of the civil rights movement, the gay rights lobby can now claim that the White House is officially on side (even if it suspects Mr Obama had been so privately for a long time).

Legislative change is what finally frees a victimised group from state-sanctioned discrimination. But laws tend only to be altered once a significant bulk of the population accepts, tolerates and even celebrates a community’s differences.

Today’s International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia is a key part of keeping the gay rights flame alive. All over the world people will make small actions which, taken as a whole, remind us of the victories won and also the amount of work that needs to be done.

"[The day] brings to attention just how much homophobia and transphobia there is in the world," said Lance Price, executive director of the Kaleidoscope Trust, which campaigns on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues. "Huge strides have been made in the UK and other countries, but elsewhere the challenges are massive."

Often it seems that international days to promote causes are picked arbitrarily – but there is a good reason why today represents the fight against sexual prejudice. It was on 17 May 1990 that the World Health Organisation finally removed homosexuality from its “International Classification of Diseases” list.

The world has come a long way. Civil unions, gay marriages, the repeal of discriminatory laws and punishments for homosexuality have gathered pace across the world. Even in the US, where evangelical Christianity clamours to dominate the debate over sexuality, the acceptance of gay relationships has undergone a radical transformation. Ten years ago, an average of just 45 per cent of Americans supported gay marriage; now that figure is an average of 56 per cent.

But the picture is not all pink. There are still at least five countries which retain the death penalty for homosexuality, while almost half of Africa’s 52 nations impose criminal punishment.

"We have come so far, and we have a responsibility to try to challenge these things elsewhere," says Matthew Todd, the editor of Attitude magazine. "It’s a simple human rights issue."

 

 

The Declining Significance of Homophobia: How Teenage Boys are Redefining Masculinity and Heterosexuality

I stumbled across this article in the guardian:
http://bit.ly/wiird5

And then found the book and study(ies) in question:
http://bit.ly/yGZ92G


Comment: I’m a little apprehensive of being overjoyous that equality has been reached, as McCormack suggests, for there’s still so much to achieve; very large and broad pockets of society still hold dear to dogma and ignorance. Very often this mindset is a product of religious doctrine, expressed by the rife playground bullying and legislation in states like Texas; the death and oppression of such minorities in African nations like Uganda, and more morbid and disgusting the state sponsoring of sex changes for homosexuals in Iran.


Sexual Equality and it’s struggle can not be an isolated reserved privilege of European countries and the West. It needs to be promoted and exported more stridently and aggressively than what is being presently exported, and that, alas is Tesco and Guinness.

One Boy’s Story

Lee, 16, says that his life at school has improved since he came out as gay aged 14, but he still suffers homophobic bullying. “Sometimes it feels a bit weird because gay really means rubbish. I don’t really like being called gay, I say ‘That’s so gay’ myself. Yes, I get bullied. It’s getting better. But I get called names every single day and I have done since I was at primary school. I don’t care any more. Well, that’s not true. I’ve cried about it a lot. I don’t really like walking by myself anywhere. I’ve been kicked a few times and punched. I try to be myself at school and I’ve got friends who’ll stick up for me, but I wish I could turn it off. I dropped out of one GCSE class because I couldn’t take the abuse from one boy. The teacher couldn’t see it, and I didn’t see why I had to spell it out to him. They don’t take homophobia seriously. There’s a poster up in our school, one of those ‘Some people are gay, get over it’ ones. It feels like it’s me that’s expected to get over it.”


Source: The Guardian

Incest is more accepted than homosexuality; no wonder the majority of southern states are beginning to look like the cast of the Hills Have Eyes.

Incest is more accepted than homosexuality; no wonder the majority of southern states are beginning to look like the cast of the Hills Have Eyes.

^_^ True Story

^_^ True Story

Hypocritical Evil (Mormonism)

An old friend called me today; a friend whom I hadn’t spoken to in possibly 3 years. I don’t know the reasoning for him phoning me, but I do know that what he told me both humoured and saddened me. 

He (the person who called) was old ‘churchgoer’, a friend of mine, who used to pick me up every Sunday and take me to Church. A fellow Mormon, he would always be in a suit and tie (black and white) and on my first outings to the church, bought me my own suit, so I would not be out of place, or ‘aesthetically deviant’ as he would put. It was mainly because my Parents couldn’t afford to buy one, that he took him to the expenditure himself. 

Among the conversation, I inquired as to how the Pastor was at my old church was. Apparently, he no longer was Pastor, but, confined to Salt Lake, to a penance of scripture reading and solitude. The Pastor was the man who drove me out of the church.

After reading a leaflet he handed to me on morality, it stated “if you are struggling with your sexuality inform your pastor”…

Perhaps, I was gullible, or genuinely concerned, but nonetheless, I went to see the Pastor to inform him of such “homosexual tendencies”. The preachings of love, compassion and forgiveness, did not seem to be potent enough in the Pastor’s mind when he addressed the issue.

To be humiliated in front of the whole congregation, to be told you are a disordered and disfigured, creature and consequently disowned by God, is not nice. Similar to my own mother, I was at the front of the church, all eyes on me, at 14, being pointed at, for being condemned for now what I did, but for what I was. Similar to my mom, who was kicked out of the church, for being pregnant out of wedlock, I was being ridiculed, for being gay. 

Myself, I live for Irony. It makes things beautiful, humorous, and worth living for. Here’s where the frustration and pain I went through, suddenly was worth it. The Pastor, the ugly toad, who consciously destroyed the self confidence of a 13 year old boy, confused and searching for answers, was confined to solitude for hiring the services of a rent boy. 

The details intrigued me…. 

I was instantly reminded of Ted Haggard, and his disaster. Because, there was drugs involved; apparently, heroin. The love of God, never saved him from his own corruption or filth. 

I don’t know whether to be extremely happy in the knowledge that the Pastor was himself, a dirty faggot, or  sad. Extremely sad, that the teachings that comes from a a clutch of sinister elderly virgins, has caused such misery in Pastor’s themselves, and the children under their pastoral care.

In the end, I know the irony pleases me. And it gives me satisfaction, that cruelty in the end will, hit the fan. It pleases me that this conscious charlatan and fraud is chewing through his own quilt, and shame, coming to terms with his own disordered nature.