Andy Stanley (YouTube)
The head of an Atlanta megachurch has rejected his pastor father’s hateful views on homosexuality and says the church should be the “safest place on the planet” for gay young people.
Andy Stanley, who has turned North Point Ministries into one the nation’s largest churches, said Christians must stop driving gay teens away from the church – saying that politics should not overrule biblical teachings, reported Project Q.
“There is not consensus in this room when it comes to same-sex attraction; there is not consensus in this room when it comes to gay marriage,” Stanley told a gathering of church leaders last month in California. “We just can’t continue to look into the filter of our politics at our spirituality. It’s got to be the other way around — and specifically when it comes to this issue.”
((REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi ) ) Pope Francis reacts as he leads a Wednesday general audience in Saint Peter’s square at the Vatican January 15, 2014.
Matthew Speiser | Business Insider | Yahoo News | April 28, 2015
An extensive study done by the Pew Research Center has yielded some fascinating information regarding the trajectory of world religions over the next four decades.
As of 2010, Christianity was the dominant world religion with roughly 2.2 billion adherents and Muslim’s were second with about 1.6 billion adherents. If current demographic trends continue however, Islam is expected to catch up to Christianity midway through the 21st century.
((Pew Research Center) )
Furthermore, people are leaving Christianity in droves. About 106 million Christians are expected to switch affiliation from 2010 to 2050 while only about 40 million people are expected to enter Christianity.
The religiously unaffiliated (athiests, agnostics) are expected to see the largest net gains from switching, adding more than 61 million followers.
Bishop Gene Robinson – Photography by Todd Franson
Justin Snow | Metro Weekly | April 6, 2015
Gene Robinson didn’t set out to make history.
“For the first two years I kind of pushed back against the moniker that would always get used about me in headlines and such — ‘the gay bishop,’” Robinson says.
In 2003, Robinson was elected the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church — a move that not only divided the Episcopal Church and broader Anglican Communion, but signaled the shifting views on homosexuality taking places in churches around the globe. Death threats against him and his family poured in. During his consecration as the Episcopal bishop of New Hampshire, there was fear someone might set off a bomb and Robinson wore a bulletproof vest under his robes.
Robinson, however, came to realize he wasn’t just the bishop of New Hampshire. His role as “the gay bishop” presented him an opportunity that, until that moment, had never been made available to anyone before.
Carol Kuruvilla | Huffington Post | February 20, 2015
Catholic students in San Francisco are speaking out against their archbishop — and they chose one of the holiest days on the church’s calendar to do so.
On Ash Wednesday, hundreds of students and parents, some with ashes still streaked across their foreheads, gathered outside Saint Mary’s Cathedral to protest morality clauses for Catholic school teachers promoted by San Francisco’s Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, ABC News’ local affiliate reported.
Hannah Regan, a 14-year-old student at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory, was one of the many who sang and recited prayers outside the church. She’s been in the city’s Catholic school system for about 10 years and loves the community she’s grown up with. But on Wednesday, she came out with a challenge, holding up a sign that read, “Teach Love, Teach Justice, Teach Acceptance.”
The Daily Beast, my good friend Russell Saunders relates what life was like for him as a gay youth in a fundamentalist evangelical church. While the people he worshiped with as a child and a young man were “generally kind-hearted, sincere people who wanted to make the world better,” his church was terribly homophobic:
| Patheos | February 18, 2015 In a heartfelt and important article for
It was in a Sunday school classroom that I was told that gays were out to deliberately spread AIDS, a calumny that still has traction in some quarters. It was at a conference I attended with the youth group where I heard a man who styled himself a Christian comedian crack a joke about “faggots,” to the riotous laughter and thundering applause of the audience. It was at a smaller youth gathering where I heard another speaker talk of shipping gays off to a desert island, once again to the acclaim of those assembled. If hell was for your garden-variety sinner, the sub-basement was for the gays. It was a lesson I learned well.
Throughout an adolescence marked with anguish, Saunders sought faith-based conversion: “Every single prayer revolved around one unchanging, passionate plea to heaven: please let me not be gay any longer. I hadn’t chosen it, and God knew I’d have given anything to change it.” He finally found happiness, not through any ex-gay ministry, but by accepting that he already was who he was supposed to be. He came out and found a freedom he’d never thought possible. A firm proponent of religious liberty, Saunders believes it is “perilous to intrude into the stuff of sermons and Sunday school lessons,” but he’s adamant that a line be drawn when it comes to claims made by mental health professionals. To that end, he supports a nationwide ban on youth being subjected to therapies purported to cure homosexuality.
Joe Morgan | Gay Star News | February 19, 2015
Pope Francis has appeared to compare trans and genderqueer people to nuclear weapons, saying both do not ‘recognize the order of creation’.
The head of the Catholic Church has claimed people who ‘manipulate’ their bodies are similar to ‘Herods’ that ‘destroy, that plot designs of death, that disfigure the face of man and woman, destroying creation.’
The comments were made in a new book published in Italy, Pope Francis: This Economy Kills, calling on Christians to safeguard God’s order of creation.
Roy Moore speaks to Fox News (screen grab)
Alabama Chief Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore on Sunday insisted that he had a moral duty to defy the United States Supreme Court if they tried to change God’s “organic law” by declaring that LGBT people had an equal right to marriage.Moore told Fox News host Chris Wallace that if the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that LGBT had equal marriage rights then he “would not be bound thereby.”
“I could recuse or dissent as a justice from Delaware did in the Dred Scott case [affirming slavery] in 1857,” the Alabama chief justice insisted. “They ruled black people were property. Should a court today obey such a ruling that is completely contradictory of the Constitution?”