January 23, 2010

Male-on-Male Sexual Harassment on the Rise in the Workplace

From Newsweek:

The Cheesecake Factory is known for its oversize portions, delectable desserts, and family-friendly atmosphere. The restaurant is also accused of creating nothing but disturbing memories for a few of its employees. In 2008 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed suit after six Cheesecake Factory staffers claimed they were subjected to repeated sexual harassment at the chain's Chandler Mall location in Phoenix, including allegations of sexual fondling, simulated rape, and even being physically dragged into the restaurant's refrigerator. The Cheesecake Factory denies the charges; in November the company settled the dispute by paying $340,000 to the victims.

Surprisingly, it wasn't a group of female workers who were compensated by the popular eatery: it was a group of male employees who claim they were sexually harassed by other men in the workplace. And, as new EEOC filings show, this situation is not unusual. Between 1992 and 2008, the percentage of sexual-harassment charges filed by men with the EEOC doubled from 8 percent to 16 percent. "While some people may think sexual harassment of male employees is a joke, the issue is real," says David Grinberg, spokesperson for the EEOC. "We are seeing more of it, and such conduct has serious legal consequences for employers."

Click here to read the rest of the story.

Encouraging Words 1/23/10-Don't Blame God for Haiti Disaster

The Bible tells us three things that we believe are very pertinent to the tragedy in Haiti:

1)  Bad things, some of them very bad, will happen during our time on Earth
2)  We won't understand why they happen
3)  God can bring good out of anything if we trust Him

When a disaster the magnitude of the Haiti earthquake, Hurricane Katrina, and the South Asian tsumami happen, it is natural and understandable for people to question God or even blame Him for allowing there horrible things to happen.

We believe this essay from Christianity Today gives a balanced and theologically sound perspective on this:

It is important to maintain two contradictory attitudes at once in many areas of Christian theology, and this is one of those areas. These are the two clashing points of view in this case:

Point of view #1: The Creation does declare the glory of God, and the "Thunderstorm Psalm" (Ps. 29: "The Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon . . .") proclaims that message magnificently. God is not only the Creator but also the One who rules over the cosmos. The theophany (a manifestation of the power of God) in the Book of Job (chs. 38-41) is the preeminent biblical passage treating of this subject, and the phrase "the doors of the sea" is derived from 38:8.

Many people have experienced a sort of theophany even in the midst of destruction; people have testified to this even when they have had to face the dire consequences of a natural catastrophe (there are examples of this in Isaac's Storm, the book about the hurricane that destroyed Galveston, and in David McCullough's account of the Johnstown Flood). So the wild, untamed aspect of nature can be either comforting or exhilarating or both, depending on one's point of view.

Point of view #2: At the same time, nature is not benign. Nature is "red in tooth and claw." Nature, like the human race, is fallen and is subject to the powers of the Evil One who continues to occupy this sphere. Flannery O'Connor wrote that her work was about the action of grace in territory held largely by the Devil; we should not fail to realize that "nature" is part of that occupied territory. Nature is often hostile, as Annie Dillard has so powerfully shown us, and the nature-worshipers among us fail to acknowledge this hostility in their pantheistic enthusiasm. Only by action of the Creator will the peaceable kingdom arrive, where the lion lies down with the lamb. (Isn't it suggestive that "Lion of Judah" and "Lamb of God" are both titles of our Lord?)

The conflict between these two realities cannot be resolved in this life. Does the Creator of all that is have the power to say to those tectonic plates, "Be still!" Of course. Then why doesn't he? Why does he permit earthquakes in the poorest country in the hemisphere?

We do not know.

Saying "there is a reason for everything" may be true, but that is a cruel and heartless response at the point of great suffering. The most pastoral response, as well as the most truthful theological response, is to live in the contradiction.
Click here to read the rest of the essay.
How can we trust God without having all the answers?  By faith.  As horrible as the Haiti disaster is, amazing stories are already surfacing of people who survivied with little to hold on to in the natural, but who exercised faith.  God never abandons us.  He won't always prevent bad things from happening to us, but he will show us a path to move forward through them--we can both personally testify to that.

Encouraging Music 1/23/10 "You Are Loved" by Josh Groban

LGBT Helping Hands 1/23/10-LGBT Youth Scotland

LGBT Youth Scotland is a national youth organisation working towardsWe provide a range of services and opportunities for young people, families and professionals the inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender young people in the life of Scotland.

We provide a range of services and opportunities for young people, families and professionals in order to proactively assist with increasing awareness and confidence, in turn reducing isolation and intolerance.

We support the network of LGBT young people and groups around Scotland and their representatives – the LGBT Youth Council.

We were established in November 1989 by members of the LGBT community in Edinburgh and became a national organisation in April 2003.
Click here to find out more.

Same-Sex Couples Pay a Steep Price for Marriage-Like Benefits/Protections

From the Chicago Tribune (hat-tip to Twitter account GayRightMedia):

If Howard Wax and Robert Pooley Jr. were a heterosexual couple, they could've gone to their nearest Cook County clerk's office, paid $40 for a marriage license and been wed.

That would have provided them an array of legal protections -- the right to make medical decisions for one another, the ability for one to inherit the other's property.

Instead, the couple paid $10,000 for an attorney to help them roughly simulate -- using wills, trusts and powers of attorney -- the protections that marriage affords. It was a price the men, parents of 3-year-old twins, were willing to pay for peace of mind, though they admit it's far from perfect.

"I feel at least like we're secure now," said Wax, who has been with Pooley for nine years. "It's not perfect, but we're OK."

Daily Devotional 1/23/10 Proving God in Finances

From:  Love Worth Finding

“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in Mine house, and prove Me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” Malachi 3:10

You can say all you want about getting right with God, but if you don’t get right with God in your finances, you are not right with God. The kind of repentance that does not reach the bank account, has never reached the heart.

In Malachi 3:7, God says, “Return unto me, and I will return unto you.” And the people said, “Wherein shall we return?” God’s answer in verse 8 reveals that they were to return in tithes and offerings.

The point of return is the point of departure. If you’re going to come back to God and if you’re going to renew your fellowship, you’re going to have to begin with the tithe.

It’s time to put the good book to the checkbook!

How are you doing in the area of your tithes and offerings to the Lord?

January 22, 2010

LGBT South-Asians in America Still Fight Stigma From Their Culture

From New York's Gay News:

Sadat Iqbal said he never planned to come out to his family. But then his father found the porn.

Iqbal, now 22, realized he was gay when just a child. As a curious ten-year old living in Queens, he surfed the Internet for sexually explicit images of men. A couple of years later, his father, a first-generation immigrant from Bangladesh, sensed something brewing and browsed through the computer. He confronted Iqbal about the graphic sites he found on Internet Explorer’s history.

“He told me to change this side of me, to tighten the screws in my head,” said Iqbal, his voice dropping.

From that moment, Iqbal said, he began to rebel by “acting out” and sneaking out of the house late at night. During one of his nocturnal escapades, he got mugged, and his parents had to fetch him from the police station. That left him even more conflicted than before.

“I felt isolated and alienated,” he recalled.

New York City may be one of the world’s gay capitals, but life is not easy for many South Asians. Stigma about homosexuality runs deep, and most say they have to hide their sexual identity from family. Such intolerance comes despite legal strides back home. Nepal’s Supreme Court in late 2008 ordered the government to legalize same-sex marriage, and India decriminalized gay sex among consensual adults last July. But that doesn’t change the thinking of many parents.
Click here to read the rest of the story.

What Jesus DID Say Also Supports LGBT People

In LGBT Christian circles, you often hear it pointed out that Jesus did not directly address homosexuality in scripture.  This is of course a very important fact, but this video shows that what our Savior actually said is also affirming of gay people:

Encouraging Music 1/22/10 "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Clay Aiken

SNN Recommends 1/22/10 (Just For Fun)-I Can Has Cheezburger

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Where Does China Stand on Gay Rights?

From the UK's Guardian (hat-tip GayAgenda):

It's a peculiarly Chinese way of dealing with things, the last-minute cancellation. Now China's gay community have learned, just like music festival organisers before them, that even licences and assurances can't protect a controversial event from a late knock on the door from the police. But Friday's cancellation of China's first official gay pageant, hours before it was due to begin in Beijing, will sting more than most government interventions. This was supposed to mark a new dawn for China's LGBT population. Instead, after a decade of mixed signals, China's gay community just wants the government to talk straight for once.

It's easy to see why the Chinese gay rights movement has been left wondering just where it stands. Homosexuality was only removed from the state-approved list of mental illnesses in 2001, and since the government has broadly taken a laissez-faire approach to the issue. While Beijing is home to a handful of gay clubs, it would be extremely unusual to see a gay couple openly affectionate in any other public place. It appeared the government was happy for a gay community to exist, as long as it broadly stayed out of the public eye.
Click here to read the rest of the article.

Daily Devotional 1/22/10 No Offense, No Effect

From:  Love Worth Finding

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” Matthew 10:34

A pulpit committee approached me one time and said, “We need a pastor for our church.” I said, “I know just the guy. He is a fantastic preacher and has a fiery evangelistic spirit, but he has health problems and he’s kind of old.” I continued, “He’s also been in jail several times.”

They began to shake their heads, and one said, “Well, we don’t know whether he’s the man we want or not.” I said, “Well, don’t worry; you couldn’t get him. He’s already in heaven, and his name is Paul.”

You don’t want someone who can rub shoulders with the people of this world and not rub any salt in their wounds. Where there is no offense, there is no effect.

Pray for the people who occupy the pulpits in our churches that they would not water down the truth of God’s Word, but be strong to proclaim its power.

January 21, 2010

Is the Window for LGBT Rights Legislation Closing?

That's the view of Steve Charing, editor of Baltimore OutLoud LGBT newspaper:

Back in March 2009 when President Obama's approval rating was still gaudy, I wrote that we had a window of opportunity to secure key legislative LGBT victories. ENDA, the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," repeal of DOMA and the passage of a comprehensive hate crimes bill (recently enacted) all seemed within grasp.

The President's popularity, his campaign promises, and a more lgbt-friendly Democratic-controlled Congress created the formula for potentially historic victories in the lgbt arena. The time was right.

I also opined that we needed to seize this window of opportunity now because things can change in a hurry. In March I wrote:

"If history has taught us anything, nothing lasts forever. Mr. Obama could stumble as the economy tumbles more. He could be accused of allowing “bonus-gate” to erode an already low trajectory for consumer confidence. There could be an international crisis—somewhere, anywhere. Patience could easily wear thin. .. Anything can happen that could derail this presidency."

And so it did.

Encouraging Words 1/21/10-Nepal To Hold Gay Weddings...on Mt. Everest

How cool is this?  From the Malaysia Sun via Twitter account EmpoweringSpirits:

Nepal is set to stage same-sex weddings on Mount Everest as part of a bid to promote the country as the homosexual tourism capital of Asia.

According to a report in The Telegraph, Nepal's homosexual community will host a tourism conference next month to explore how to attract wealthy gay visitors to boost the country's war-ravaged economy.

The country's new constitution will legalise homosexual marriage in May this year, when "Pink Mountain" will begin offering luxury honeymoon and wedding packages.

Encouraging Music 1/21/10 "Voice of Truth" by Casting Crowns

Matthew 25 Resource 1/21/10-International Medical Corps

We were contacted by someone from this organization, which is helping out in Haiti.  She asked if we could mention her organization here, and that surely fits into our Matthew 25 resources so we're glad to help out.

International Medical Corps is a global, humanitarian, nonprofit organization, founded by volunteer doctors and nurses and dedicated to saving lives and relieving suffering through relief and development programs. Our emergency response team is in Haiti responding in force and I would like to ask for your help to get the word out to the readers of Straight Not Narrow. There are still thousands of patients seeking treatment of which approximately 80% are in need of surgery and are running out of time - especially with the tremendous aftershocks still devastating this country. The team is treating crush injuries, trauma, substantial wound care, shock and other critical cases with the few available supplies - And they're in it for the long haul.

We've put up a blogger friendly widget here on our site (click here):

With the widget it's really easy to let your readers know that donating $10 to help the people of Haiti is as simple as sending a text message of the word "haiti" to 85944.
We encourage you to click on the widget link and check them out.

Washington Post Editorializes on Maryland's Legislative Attempts for LGBT Equality

From the Washington Post:

GAY RIGHTS organizations across the country hailed the District's recent decision to legalize same-sex marriage. Among them was Equality Maryland, the state's leading gay rights organization, which celebrated what it called the "historic vote" in the District.

Justice and simple decency require that same-sex couples be afforded the same legal protections and benefits of marriage that are now, with a few exceptions, reserved for heterosexual couples. Equality Maryland is right to want the same benefits and protections for gays and lesbians that their neighbors in the District enjoy -- and it is right to want them now.

But the group and its lawmaker allies are short-sighted to refuse to consider -- let alone accept -- anything short of full marriage equality. The Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act, which would legalize same-sex marriage in the state and was voted down each of the past two years, is likely to be reintroduced during the current Maryland legislative session and suffer the same fate.

Daily Devotional 1/21/10 God Will Always Answer

From: Love Worth Finding

“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” Jeremiah 33:3

I read about some children in a Sunday School class who wrote a missionary to let him know that they were praying for him. The teacher of the class said, “Now, children, the missionary is a very busy person, so don’t expect him to write you back.” One little girl’s letter read, “Dear Brother Brown, We’re praying for you. We don’t expect an answer.”

Sadly, this is how we pray! We don’t really expect an answer. But God has promised He will answer us when we call upon His name. Psalm 91:15 says, “He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honor him.”

What are you praying for today?
Do you believe that God can answer?
Do you believe that God will answer?
Then thank Him now for answering.

January 20, 2010

"Straight Talk On "Gay" Marriage"

From the Liberty for All blog, hat-tip to Twitter account EqualityforLGBT;

Back in the 70s, Harvey Milk knew that most people in California really didn’t hate gays all THAT much. But he also knew that most would not get involved in fighting the anti-homosexuality laws and the Briggs Initiative (Prop 6) against gay or gay supporting teachers in public schools because as long as “gay issues” only affect THEM over THERE, they don’t affect US over HERE. To this end, Mr. Milk encouraged his supporters to “come out” to their friends and families, and it worked. Over thirty years ago, against what seemed like impossible odds, he and his supporters defeated Prop 6 by making “them” into “us.”

What happened in 2008 was exactly the opposite. Instead of needing to make “them” into “us,” since gays are pretty openly accepted in most communities, our problem is that we needed to make “us” into “them.” We didn’t need to look at what they have in common with us to humanize them in our minds as much as what we have in common with them, and what we have in common with them in this case in particular is a desire NOT to have the government define for us whom we can or cannot marry. That’s how we should have sold it, and that’s how we need to sell it now if we would have this atrocity overturned.

Welcome to Midweek Worship 1/20/10 HOPE

Encouraging Music 1/20/10 "I Can Only Imagine" by Mercy Me

LGBT Helping Hands 1/20/10-Montrose Counseling Center (Houston, TX)

MCC empowers our community, primarily gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals and their families, to enjoy healthier and more fulfilling lives by providing culturally affirming and affordable behavioral health and prevention services.

We envision a healthier society marked by permanent, positive changes in attitudes and behaviors toward GLBT communities, and the ability of all GLBT individuals to realize their fullest potential.

MCC's team of state-licensed clinicians, masters-level therapists, and skilled educators work diligently to create healthier futures for our clients. Our "beyond counseling" approach involves a continuum of care -- utilizing a combination of traditional therapy, outreach, education, peer support, advocacy and case management -- to achieve the best possible outcomes.

Click here to find out more.

Latinos Fighting for Repsect Far Away From Home

From OregonLive.com (hat-tip to Twitter account TGworldNews):

Colima, Mexico, fell in love with a young woman, her parents ran her out of the house. They sent Vazquez to live with relatives in Oregon, hoping a separation from her girlfriend would save their only daughter and the family honor.

At first, Vazquez -- who had known she was gay since childhood -- felt like a fish in water. She joined the club for gay youths at Century High School in Hillsboro. She reveled in the sight of same-sex couples publicly holding hands. Oregon seemed so unlike Colima, where she had been singled out, ridiculed, even fired from a job for being gay.

But the bubble quickly burst. As family in Mexico continued to repudiate her, so did fellow Latinos in Oregon. Through sideways glances and snide remarks, Vazquez understood that the Portland area, known as a haven for gay and transgender folks, offered her little refuge.

"Emotionally, I felt like I was back in Mexico," said Vazquez, now 31, who is one of several individuals and organizations working to break through taboos on homosexuality in the Latino community.

"Latinos here see us with fear or with compassion, but never as equals," she said. "They think something is wrong with us."

Click here to read the rest of the story.

Daily Devotional 1/20/10 Letting God Work In and Through You

From:  Love Worth Finding

“For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:13

One of the greatest secrets I have ever learned is this: God doesn’t want me to do anything for Him. He wants to do something through me.

People say, “Well, I just serve God in my poor, little, old weak way.” I feel like saying, “Well, quit it.” He doesn’t want you to serve Him in your poor, little, old weak way. He wants you out of the way, so He can flow through you!

We need to make ourselves available to God and say, “God, I’m tired of being inhibited. I want to be inhabited by You. I want You to live Your life through me.”

Where have you been standing in the way of God instead of surrendering to God and letting Him live through you?

January 19, 2010

Was Ruling on Camers for Prop 8 Trial an Omen For the Larger Question?

When the Supreme Court upheld the ban on broadcasting California's Prop 8 trial, did it show how the votes would go if the issue itself should come before them?  This article from the Los Angeles Times looks at that question:

he U.S. Supreme Court cast its first vote last week on the legal challenge to California's voter initiative barring same-sex marriage, and some experts said it was a bad omen for those who hope gays and lesbians will win a constitutional right to such unions.

The 5-4 decision, with conservatives in the majority, intervened in the San Francisco district court trial on behalf of the defenders of Proposition 8.

The high court rebuked U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn Walker for seeking to give the public a chance to view the proceedings on the Internet. In its opinion, the majority saw the dispute through the same lens as the opponents of gay marriage and decided that they -- not homosexuals -- faced a hostile public climate of harassment and intimidation.

Encouraging Words 1/19/10-A Report on the Gay Christian Network Conference

Our friends at the Gay Christian Network got some very positive recognition from the website Change.org:

Gay Christians aren't willing to sit at the back of the bus any longer (or, well, make that the tail end of the pews). Case in point, a conference in Nashville last week that drew hundreds willing to put their sexual orientation where their religion is.

We hear a lot about ex-gay ministries. 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. That was the meme put forward by the Gay Christian Network during their gathering last week. One mega evangelical star, Tony Campolo, spoke at the event, and he asked the crowd to remember what Jesus said about homosexuality.

Click here to read the rest of the story.

Encouraging Music 1/19/10 "Amazing Love" by Hillsong - Michelle Fragar

Matthew 25 Resource 1/19/10-Central Illinois Foodbank (Springfield)

Central Illinois Foodbank distributes more than 4.7 million pounds of food and grocery items each year to 160 agencies throughout central and southern Illinois. We depend on partnerships; with our agencies, with our donors, with other organizations, with our volunteers, and with Feeding America, formerly America's Second Harvest: The Nation's Foodbank Network. Because we cooperate with so many, not only are we able to distribute food from our warehouse, but also we host the Kids Cafe and Food Rescue programs.

Click here to find out more.

Public Support Growing For Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

From Think Progress:

Today, the New York Times reported that the Pentagon is “stepping up internal discussions on how gay men and lesbians might be able to serve openly in the armed services” in anticipation that Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) will be repealed. A small group — put together by Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mike Mullen to prepare for congressional hearings — recently met on the issue:

A one-page memorandum drafted by staff members as a discussion point for the meeting said that the chiefs could adopt the view that “now is not the time” because of the continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and that the military would be better off delaying the start of the repeal process until 2011.

The same memorandum, according to a military official who has seen it, also said that “every indicator of opinion over the past 16 years shows movement toward nondiscrimination based on orientation” and that “in time the law will change.”

Indeed, recent polling confirms this indicator. ThinkProgress obtained results from a November poll on DADT conducted by Democracy Corps that shows likely voters support ending the ban on gay men and women serving openly in the military by a 55 to 35 percent margin
Click here to read the rest of the story.

Daily Devotional 1/19/10 Jehovah Jireh, Our Provider

From:  Love Worth Finding

“And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and He healed their sick.” Matthew 14:14

It is the unbelievable, supernatural replenishment that awakens the world to see the mighty power of God. Jesus demonstrated, once with a crowd of 5,000 and again with a crowd of 4,000, that He is the God who provides (see Matthew 14:14-21, 15:32-38). When the most “responsible” thing to do, in human terms, was to ask the multitudes to find their own food, Jesus turned to the supernatural power of God. Moved with compassion, He confidently told the disciples to begin feeding the multitudes.

 Jesus never wavered in His complete and utter trust in Jehovah Jireh.

Read the accounts of these miracles in the book of Matthew today, then ask God to fill you with an utter and complete trust in Jehovah Jireh, YOUR Provider.

January 18, 2010

The NY Senate Race and "Gay Conversion" Therapy

No, not THAT kind of gay conversion.  The writer, Hilary Rosen, means that of politicians converting from opposing LGBT equality to supporting it.  Here's an excerpt from her essay in The Huffington Post:

...if those politicians convert because it is the evening of a governor making a decision on a Senate appointment (one that was held up, in part, because Gillibrand was not in favor of same sex marriage, until she said she would change her view), or if it is because a southern politician with a good heart has moved to New York and is considering a run for the Senate in a new day, I'll take the conversions.

Let's not kid ourselves, as those who attack Harold Ford are doing. Senator Gillibrand is a convert. A welcome and lovely convert, but a convert, who converted when it became politically important to do so. And now she is working hard to overturn Don't Ask Don't Tell in the Senate. I'll take it, and I like her and her energy. Harold Ford is a convert, too. I've had many conversations with him about these issues over the many years that I have known and liked him. For Ford, who has been out of office, his evolution has taken place more privately, as he watched the debates on civil unions vs. marriage, as he got married and moved to New York, and socialized with a more diverse crowd, and saw the consequences of prejudice more directly than in his old conservative Memphis district. I'll take that now, too.

It seems divisive and pointless to attack people for their past positions when they want to be with us now. We need all the friends we can get and the only way we will get them is to grow them -- to celebrate their evolution.
Click here to read the rest of the essay.

Encouraging Words 1/18/10-A Republican Support LGBT Equality.....on Fox News?

Yes, it's true.  Here's the transcript from Joe.My.God:

"Some Republicans support gay rights, but prefer progress through legislative action or majority rule at the ballot box, rather than judicial action. But what if a democratic election imposes mandates that violate a citizen’s constitutional freedom? In the event that majority rule insufficiently protects individual liberty, our system of checks and balances puts forth that it is the role of the courts, to guarantee and protect the rights to individual Americans.

"That’s why the Supreme Court, in 1967 Loving v. Virginia, legalized interracial marriage –six years after our current president was born to an interracial couple. At that time 73% of the population opposed “miscegenation.” How long would it have taken to change popular opinion, for the minority to democratically win their constitutional rights? As Martin Luther King, Jr. famously asserted, “Justice delayed is justice denied.”

"For those of you who would label me a 'RINO' (Republican In Name Only) for taking this stand, I direct you to Vice President Cheney, whose conservative credentials are impeccable, and who answered a question on the topic before the National Press Club audience on June 1, 2009 by saying simply, 'freedom means freedom for everyone.'" - Fox News contributor Margaret Hoover, coming out for marriage equality on FoxNew.com, of all places. Hoover directs readers to the Facebook page Republicans For Marriage Equality.

Encouraging Music 1/18/10 "Tears Are A Language"

LGBT Helping Hands 1/18/10-Rainbow Resource Center (Winnipeg, Manitoba) Canada


A society in which diverse sexual and gender identities, orientations and expressions are included, valued and celebrated as a result of our active commitment to promote and maintain dignity, human freedoms and human rights.


REPRESENT AND SUPPORT Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Two-Spirit, Intersex, Queer, Questioning and Ally (LGBTT*) Individuals, Communities and Families by providing comprehensive education and outreach services, accessible counselling and other programs and services.

PROMOTE LGBTT* VISIBILITY by way of advocacy, community-building and networking on local, provincial, national and global levels.

PROVIDE ACCESS to our services and resources through networks, and partnerships and allies, throughout Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario.

FOCUS ON SAFETY and harm reduction to maximize the LGBTT* community's health and well-being by promoting healthy living and obtaining, creating and providing information and educational resources.

BUILD COMMUNITY with LGBTT* Individuals and other groups by way of mobilization, education and celebration.

Click here to find out more.

Would Dr. King Have Spoken Out for LGBT Rights?

His widow thought so according to this essay from Rev. Irene Monroe at UK Gay News:

King understood the interconnections of struggles. And an example of that understanding is when Martin Luther King said: “The revolution for human rights is opening up unhealthy areas in American life and permitting a new and wholesome healing to take place. Eventually the civil rights movement will have contributed infinitely more to the nation than the eradication of racial justice.”

This statement clearly includes LGBTQ justice but would King have spoken on this subject at that time and even now?

King’s now deceased wife says yes.

In 1998, Coretta Scott King addressed the LGBT group Lambda Legal in Chicago. In her speech, she said queer rights and civil rights were the same. “I appeal to everyone who believes in Martin Luther King’s dream to make room at the table of brother and sisterhood for lesbian and gay people,” she said.

As we remember Dr. King on this day designated in his memory, let's also remember his widow's appeal.
Click here to read the rest of the story.

Daily Devotional 1/18/10 Rejoicing at the Lord's Table

From: Love Worth Finding

“Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine.” John 21:12a

Is Satan whispering that God is not for you in your daily battles? Is he whispering lies that God is going to erase your name from the book of life for something you’ve done, yet repented over? Satan never had it so wrong! And Jesus never had it so right! Salvation in Christ is not a funeral, but a feast! The Bible is a continual feast from Genesis right through to Revelation. Covenant meals and meals of fellowship are frequent occurrences in Scripture. Our Shepherd, the Lord Jesus, has given many examples of His open invitation to be replenished and restored, to remember, and to rejoice at His table. Call your family or Bible Study group together this week and celebrate the Lord’s Supper. Take time to remember the powerful promise of His resurrection, replenishment, and restoration.

January 17, 2010

Poll on Constiutionality of Prop 8

Here's a chance to have your say on California's Proposition 8:

NY Times' Maureen Dowd Talks With Odd Couple Attorneys Littigating Against Prop 8

From the New York Times:

It has been quite a journey for Ted Olson. He’s gone from being the conservative lawyer who helped crown W. by winning the Bush v. Gore case before the Supreme Court, to being a lesbian.

“Maureen,” he told me in his gravelly voice, “one of the biggest lesbian groups in this country told me I’m already an honorary lesbian.”

Did it make you feel different, I wondered.

“I still like women very much,” he wryly replied, as his biking pal, liberal adversary and now co-counsel David Boies laughed, snacking on a crust of sourdough bread in their temporary office on Mission Street.

In 2000, Olson and Boies sparred with each other in Washington over which candidate would marry the country. Now they have joined forces here to spar with Prop 8 defenders over who can marry.
I asked the lawyers if they were disappointed that the president who had once raised such hope in the gay community now seemed behind the curve.

“Damned right,” Boies snapped. “I hope my Democratic president will catch up to my conservative Republican co-counsel.”

Olson added: “I’m not talking about Obama, but that’s what’s so bad about politicians. They say, ‘I must hasten to follow them, for I am their leader.’”

Obama sees himself as such a huge change that he can be cautious about other societal changes. But what he doesn’t realize is that legalizing gay marriage is like electing a black president. Before you do it, it seems inconceivable. Once it’s done, you can’t remember what all the fuss was about.
We're pretty sure President Obama keeps up with the Times.  We hope he read that last paragraph.
Click here to read the rest of the story.

LGBT Helping Hands 1/17/10-Memphis (TN) Gay and Lesbian Community Center

Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center is a mechanism for change in the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people to facilitate long-term positive growth in themselves and in the community of the Mid-South.

In 1989, the plans and dreams of numerous GLBT Mid-Southerners became a reality. Through their hard work and sacrifice, they built an "oasis in the desert of our struggle." The charter for this new organization became effective on Feb 23, 1989.

Over the years, we've had several homes, great triumphs and some lean times. But through it all, the Mission of our organization has maintained us: "...to create a better future for our Community in the Mid-South. We will endeavor to offer an array of diverse GLBT services by utilizing the talents, energy, and resources among us."

Whether or not you've ever walked through our doors or attended one of our events, know that we continue to work to make life better for ALL in our community.

Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center is governed by a Constitution & By-Laws that support the beliefs on which it was established.
Click here to find out more.

Welcome to Sunday Worship 1/10/10

If you don't have a welcoming church near you, or you just can't make yourself step into one, we're bringing worship to you. Here are links to some worship music and services from open and affirming ministries (all times eastern). I hope you are blessed and take time out of your busy schedule to enter into the Lord's day.

Don't forget to click on the tab on the upper right of this blog and leave your prayer requests in the comment section so we can petition the Lord for your needs.

If you know of a service we should add to our list, please send an e-mail and share it with us.  
Live Sunday Services (all times Eastern) 
FL-Potters House International Fellowship, Tampa, 11:00 AM
VA-Believers Covenant Fellowship, Vienna, 11:00 AM

AL-Covenant Community Church, Birmingham, 12:00 AM

NC-Church of the Holy Spirit Fellowship, Winston-Salem, 12:00 PM

FL-Oasis Fellowship Ministries, Casselberry, 12:00 PM

OK-Diversity Christian Fellowship International, Tulsa, 1:00 PM

CA-Glory Tabernacle Christian Center, Long Beach, 1:00 PM

WA-Living Water Fellowship, Kenmore, 1:30 PM

Canada-Rainbow Community Church, Vancouver 9:00 PM


Canada, Vancouver-Christ Alive Community Church, 10:15 PM
FL-Beacon of Hope Ministries, Dunedin (Living the Good Life radio program) 4:30 PM

Video Archive

AL-Covenant Community Church, Birmingham

CA-Glory Tabernacle Christian Center, Long Beach

FL-Church of the Holy SpiritSong, Ft. Lauderdale

FL-Oasis Fellowship Ministries, Casselberry

FL-New Hope Christian Center, Pensacola

FL-Potters House International Fellowship, Tampa

GA-Gentle Spirit Christian Church, Atlanta

GA-New Covenant Church of Atlanta

NC-Church of the Holy Spirit Fellowship, Winston-Salem

OK-Expressions Community Fellowship, Oklahoma City

OK-Diversity Christian Fellowship International, Tulsa

TX-The One Church, Garland

WA-Living Water Fellowship, Kenmore

Canada-Rainbow Community Church, Vancouver

Audio Archive

AZ-Community Church of Hope, Phoenix

AK-Open Door Community Church, Sherwood

CA-Christ Chapel of Long Beach

CA-Christ Chapel of the Valley, North Hollywood

FL-Beacon of Hope Ministries, Dunedin (Living the Good Life radio program)

FL-Body of Christ Church of God, Largo

FL-New Hope Christian Center, Pensecola

GA-New Covenant Church of Atlanta

KY-Covenant Community Church, Louisville

MD-Kittamaqundi Community, Columbia

NC-Revolution Charlotte

OH-Emmanuel Fellowship Church, Akron

OH-All Saints Community Church, Cortland

TN-Covenant of the Cross, Madison

TX-New Hope Fellowship Church, Dallas

TX-White Rock Community Church, Dallas

TX-Community Gospel Church, Houston
TX-Through Him Fellowship, Houston

UT-Glory to God Christian Church, Ogden

South Africa-Deo Gloria Family Church

Can we pray for you? E-mail straight_notnarrow@yahoo.com

If a Pastor Preaches Hate, Get Up and Leave!

That's what a gay couple did in a Washington, DC church.  From the DC Agenda:

Jon Mack and his partner, Michael Garrett, said their one-year tenure as members of Greater Mount Calvary Holy Church in Northeast D.C. came to an abrupt end last week.

The two gay men said they were startled and deeply hurt when Bishop Alfred Owens, the church pastor, appeared to be sending them and other same-sex couples a blunt message Jan. 3.

“Sex is only pleasing to God in the marriage bed, and the marriage bed is a man and … a woman!” Owens shouted from the pulpit, with hundreds in the church pews shouting their approval, according to accounts by Mack and Garrett.

Owens’ remarks are also captured on a recording of his sermon made available last week on the church’s web site.

“If marriage wasn’t between a man and a woman, you wouldn’t be here because two men doing it don’t produce no kids,” Owens said. “And two women doing it don’t produce no kids! It’s all about family,” he said as members of the congregation continued to clap and cheer.

“During this homophobic rant, me and my partner got up and walked out,” said Mack, 28.
Amen.  You do NOT have to sit and listen to someone preach against your right to love someone.  Go somewhere that affirms who you are as a person and shows you the path to a close relationship with God within that context.
Click here to read the rest of the story.