September 16, 2005

A Gay-Affirming Church Spared, Others Not So Fortunate

Another gay-affirming congregation my church is associated with is in New Orleans. You may have heard about the bad weather they had down there recently. Last week our pastor spoke with the pastor of Word Harvesters Church, Zoila Aguilar, and discovered that, amazingly, their church suffered no damage from Hurricane Katrina. Our congregation had invested a lot of prayer time asking for God's mercy for that church and praise Him that those prayers were answered.

Interestingly, she also related the fact that other churches near her suffered various levels of damage. This would be a good story to relay to those who claimed Katrina was God's judgement on New Orleans. What can that say about Word Harvesters Church, that God missed?

This congregation, like so many others in that area, still needs your prayers because many of the people lost their homes and all of their belongings.

Gay-Straight Alliance? Not At This School!

This is the kind of story that will spike the blood pressure of anyone with an open mind. As reported on, a high school in Georgia had over 60 students sign up for a "Gay-Straight Alliance" club. That sounds like a good thing, right? Not according to a record crowd at a Madison County Board of Education Meeting. One speaker, no doubt taking time away from his day job as a rocket scientist, compared the club to the KKK in its potentialf for diviseness.

So a club that would bring gay and straight people TOGETHER would be divisive? I'm glad that person pointed it out because I'm not nearly smart enough to figure that out on my own.

September 13, 2005

Shaq Helps Police Catch Gay Assault Suspect

Since I'm a sportswriter in my other life ( this story really tickled me and I thought you would appreciate it. NBA star Shaquille Oneil, who has been in training for some time to become a police office when he retires, recently helped Miami Beach police. They arrested a man who O'Neal saw allegedly yell anti-gay slurs at a gay couple walking along the street, then throw a bottle at them. Shaq trailed the suspect and alerted police to make the arrest. O'Neal recently led a major effort for hurricane Katrina relief in South Florida. It's nice to see an athlete who is actually interested in someone besides himself.

Persuasion Using a "Velvet Glove"

I found a story off the AP wire courtesy of discussing the approach Focus on the Family is using to campaign for the repeal of the "Maine Human Rights Act," which specifically includes sexual orientation.

Apparently Focus on the Family belongs to the group of fundamentalits that believes specifying that is is wrong to discriminate against homosexuals grants them some kind of special rights. Interestingly, the leaders of the campaign in Maine are asking their workers to tone down their condemnation of homosexuality and not come across as hateful.

That approach, although somewhat disengenous, is no better or worse than what most other political activists do to persuade people to adopt their particular point of view. That's not my issue.

This report also tell us that Maine evangelical leaders were urged to quit quoting the bible verse (Leviticus 18:22) which is so often used to refer to gay sex as an "abomination."

Let me get this straight--religious leaders are urged NOT to quote their main source of moral guidance in order to be more paletable to voters. What election or vote is important enough to win that turning AWAY from the Bible is a justifiable approach, especially among those who have pledged to spread the Gospel?

Only ones where you are willing to put YOUR desires and values ahead of God's. For me, that would be none.

September 12, 2005

KKK Protests Pro-Gay Church Group

I dabble in writing fiction, but you just can't make this stuff up. A recent meeting of a pro-gay United Methodist group in North Carolina was protested by about a dozen card-carrying members of the KKK. That's right, the KKK is branching out and not reserving their message of hate for African-Americans. One of the protesters' signs said "Show me where sin is OK." Sure folks, right after you show me where hate is okay.

Looking at the glass half full, the fact that there was a religious group in the notoriously conservative south seeking full rights for gay members is a good thing. God bless them and others like them!