Can you be GAY and CHRISTIAN?

The words "gay" and "Christian" are not often used in the same sentence. If they are, itís not usually in a positive light. References in the Bible have suggested that homosexuality is a sin and there are some die-hard Christians who wonít let anyone forget this. Weíve seen them chanting homophobic slurs and holding up offensive placards at Mardi Gras parades, town halls, even at funerals and weddings, all with the intention to discriminate and shame those who give in to their Ďtemptationsí!

Hateful speech disguised under the language of salvation has reined church services that are entirely dedicated to condemn homosexuality. Yet isnít this intolerant behavior a sin itself, more so than whom a person loves? Does it not defy the essence of God, who is an all-mighty being of unconditional love and acceptance?

Perhaps those references in the Bible has been misinterpreted and taken out of context. Besides, are we really supposed to literally take in everything the Bible says to heart? After all, the Bible was not actually written by God, but rather by his followers and their interpretation of his word.

Of course there are varying degrees of acceptance amongst Christian groups. There are some that completely accept homosexuality while there are others that have placed idealized conditions upon it. For example, Dr. Michael Brown, president of the FIRE School of Ministry and director of the Coalition of Conscience, believes that itís possible to have same sex attractions but it mustnít be acted upon if you want to be considered a true Christian. However if you do practice homosexual acts, then itís impossible to follow Jesus and therefore you are not a true Christian.

The basic notion is that being gay is not a choice, but RESPONDING to gay feelings is.

This ideology is reflected in TLCís upcoming TV series ĎMy Husbandís Not Gayí which follows married Mormon men who are attracted to men. Each of them is in a committed and monogamous relationship with a woman. Although they do have same sex attractions, they insist that they are not gay and can overcome these feelings with their faith in God.

The show has been met with controversy by LGBT groups who claim the narrative of "gay but not gay" is an irresponsible and dangerous practice because it promotes denying oneís sexuality in favor of glorified, outdated doctrines. Christian groups have also raised their concerns by suggesting these men are completely immoral and therefore not deserving of Godís love and will be going straight to hell.

Ultimately these views serve to highlight the oversimplification of sexuality as either gay or straight, when reality tells us it is much more fluid than that. Perhaps these men are not gay, but bisexual? Surely if one is to believe that Jesus walked on water, than one can at least entertain the idea of somebody desiring both a man and woman?

You only need to take a stroll through any major city in the world to understand that we cannot compartmentalize people as either gay or straight. There are people who identify as bisexual, asexual, transsexual, transgender or queer, which are terms that extend beyond the normal binaries of orientation. Are they all destined for abomination? Is God punishing them? Or are they being punished by a society with prehistoric ideas of individualism and spiritualty?

Still the question remains - can you be Christian and gay? Is it possible for two identities at seemingly opposing ends of the spectrum to thrive harmoniously?

We must remember that before we start clinging and conditioning ourselves to any identity through gender, race, religion or social status, we are ALL human beings first. As human beings, the core of our existence is dependent on values that are also modeled in the Christian faith. These values include tolerance, love and acceptance.

So the answer is yes - you can be Christian and gay! You neednít separate your faith from your being for they both make up whom you are.

Many may argue that thousands of years of Biblical principles cannot be wrong. But come on! Anybody can take a passage from the Bible and misconstrue it to validate any argument. Besides, the Bible reflected the culture of that time and during that time levirate marriages (where a man can take his dead brotherís wife and produce children) and polygamy were also the conventional norm. In todayís mainstream culture, even within the realm of Christianity, these lifestyles arenít perpetuated, let alone accepted. Why? Because itís not relevant to us! Times have changed!

If we were to obey and accept every Biblical reading as moral guidance, than weíd still have slavery, our children would be sacrificed, men would have short hair and not shave, women would be silent and the world would still be considered flat.

Now we all know the world is round! We also know the world is much bigger than we once thought and itís full of things that we are still struggling to understand despite humanityís spiritual and scientific maturity. Gay people exist and so do Christians Ė it shouldnít be about accepting or Ďchoosingí one lifestyle over the other. When we start outlawing and restricting people we are only going backwards. True believers will love their fellow Christians no matter what and encourage their faith so that we can move forward to create a world thatís peaceful and loving, which is ultimately Godís wish for us.

Gay christians

Welcome to gay Christians, an Internet network of affirmative and supportive chat channels. Our "membership" draws support from a great variety of faith traditions, and our strength lies in such diversity. We affirm God's acceptance and love of all people, regardless of their sexual or affectional orientation.

GAY..... What does it mean to be gay?

What does being gay mean to you? What is your reaction to each of the following statements?

1. Being gay is having the capability to love a member of the same sex to a much greater depth than a member of the opposite sex.

2. Being gay is a matter of love, not a matter of sex.

3. Being gay is who you are, not what you do.

4. Being gay is part of you, not a separate entity.

5. Being gay is OK -- the sin is living a lie.

6. Being gay is not chosen, if it were, there would be no gays.

7. Being gay is to be ridiculed about something you can do nothing about.

8. Being gay is not changeable -- but it is liveable.

9. Being gay is accepting yourself when others are not accepting of you.

10. Being gay is being who you are -- even though you don't understand it.

11. Being gay is gentleness, warmth and sensitivity, when you are not at war with the outside world.

12. Being gay is different, and the definition of different is not "bad."

13. Being gay is reaching the autumn of your years and wondering why you have spent most of your life trying to get acceptance from people who don't know you and who don't understand you.

14. Being gay is YOU -- and nothing in this world is more important than that.

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