npr’s Fresh Air did a report today on Exodus and the ex-gay movement. I only heard the first part, but found it fascinating.
For those of you who have seen ‘but i’m a cheerleader‘ and thought it was over the top – think again. most interestingly, the men in the ‘ministry’ aren’t allowed to join health clubs (gay), share cigarettes (um… gay), use ironic/sarcastic humor (totally gay), or wear certain styles of clothing. gay styles. totally totally gay styles. oh my goodness those styles are gay.
For those of you who haven’t seen ‘but i’m a cheerleader’ – go watch it now. it’s great fun.
I heard it, and I was sad to hear how off the mark this Exodus ministries is. I know good christian gay men who do not have bad relationships with their fathers, but who are just born gay. And they are blessed men, who have shown me more about God than almost anyone (except for my mom.
But, who else would do a piece on Exodus but good ol’ Teri Gross. I love her! (Does that make me a lesbian? Hold on, just a sec–I’ll have to check with Exodus)
I loved “But I’m a cheerleader” – I thought it was great parody, but it is depressing to think it really happens.
“But I’m a cheerleader”–classic.
I can’t wait until those who view homosexuality as wrong or even atrocious or unforgivable can see past their opinions and convictions to view everyone as individual persons of worth and deserving the same respect (and rights) as every other human being.
Simply because people express their sexuality differently than one man and one woman together (missionary position only, of course) does not mean they are lesser human beings who deserve the contempt, hatred, violence, and refusal of rights that many are daily surrounded by.
Some of the strongest Christians (Mennonite too) I have ever been friends with are gay–the intense struggle for them to find acceptance in the church is difficult for me to fathom. I’m not necessarily talking about membership (that’s another whole can of worms), but in general: Shouldn’t our churches be the most accepting places for everyone? How are the broken made whole if we turn them away? How is the church enriched if new and different ideas are kept at bay? The Church should not be threatened by, nor should they exclude those they view as “sinners.” “Sinners” are exactly the ones needing to be pulled into the “flock” and held, loved and supported through the changes they need to make in their lives. Churches should be refuges for the lost, lonely, broken, scared, needy and outcast in the same way that Jesus was a source of unconditional love, healing and hope for the same “types” of people.
So in the meantime, until our churches become such places of refuge, support and acceptance, we must find the strength to be ambassadors of what the church can be, showing the “dregs of society” –and everyone else–love, kindness, respect, and acceptance. Far easier said than done, but certainly worth the effort.
Apologies for the unbidden missive.