Tag Archives: homosexuality

Presbyterian Church USA Validate Homosexual Pastors

Presbyterian Church USA Validate Homosexual Pastors

Editor Comments  – By Dr H.L Champion

One by one Church groups are manipulated by social trends of sexual perversion. The Presbyterian USA Denomination has for decades shifted to the  far left of Biblical guidelines and sensible morality. This Associated Press release is uncut and does not fully represent the positions of Baptist.Org. It is just the news. The implications are numerous.

It goes without saying, “That it needs to be said”; America is going straight to hell in a church offering plate.  Good people in so many Church groups have supported the very antithesis of their beliefs. But, no more.

Associated Press, FileDr. Ray Whetstone, right, an ordained chuch elder at the Second Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, poses at the church with his long-time lover Wesley Pennington, the church worship director, on March 11, 1998. Whetstone, then 39, was facing a church trial initiated by another elder who was outraged that Second Presbyterian ordained the openly gay man.

PATRICK CONDON, Associated Press Writer

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota — Leaders of the Presbyterian church have voted to allow non-celibate gays in committed relationships to serve as clergy.

Thursday’s vote isn’t a final stamp of approval for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) or its more than 2 million members. But it’s a step that could make the church one of the most gay-friendly major Christian denominations in the country.

Delegates voted during the church’s general assembly in Minneapolis, with 53 percent approving the more liberal policy. A separate vote is expected later Thursday on whether to change the church’s definition of marriage from between “a man and a woman” to between “two people.”

But such changes would take effect only if approved by a majority of the church’s 173 regional presbyteries and its more than 2 million members.

The assembly voted two years ago to liberalize the gay clergy policy, but it died last year when 94 of the presbyteries voted against it.

Still, the proposed changes “have the potential to be historic,” said Cindy Bolbach, an elder at National Capital Presbytery in Washington and the assembly’s elected moderator.

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is ranked the 10th-largest church in the U.S. with 2.8 million members, according to the National Council of Churches’ 2010 “Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches.” But its own media materials tout 2.1 million members.

Earlier this week, both proposed constitutional changes were approved by assembly committees. The gay clergy change passed 36-16, and the definition of marriage cleared on a vote of 34-18.


“There are still big steps ahead, but I’m feeling better about this than I ever have before,” said the Rev. Ray Bagnuolo, the openly gay pastor of Janhus Presbyterian Church in New York City.

Some conservative-minded Presbyterians tried to rally opposition to the changes.

“Blurring or obscuring the clear teaching of God’s Word in order to keep in step with secular laws and changing personal morals only confuses our witness and causes innumerable problems for the future,” Presbyterians for Renewal, a group opposed to the changes, wrote on its website.

“Our church is divided and actions we take today at general assembly can split it even further,” Donna Rivett, an elder at the Presbytery of Tropical Florida, said during assembly debate on the gay clergy policy.

Under current church policy, Presbyterians are only eligible to become clergy, deacons or elders if they are married or celibate. The new policy would strike references to sexuality altogether in favor of candidates committed to “joyful submission to worship of Christ.”

A number of major Christian denominations have voted in recent years to allow non-celibate gays to serve as clergy if they are in committed relationships. Among them are the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the U.S. Episcopal Church and the United Church of Christ.

“For the Presbyterian Church to stay current and enter the next generation, they really need to let go of this debate,” said the Rev. Cindi Love, executive director of SoulForce, a gay Christian group.

Love said she also believed that if the Presbyterians approve the redefinition of marriage, the church would become the largest U.S. Christian denomination to recognize marriage between same-sex couples.

A separate measure, which would also require regional ratification, would remove the threat of punishment for clergy who perform same-sex marriages in states that allow it.

June 10/2014 AP

Editor’s Post comments –
The Homosexual agenda is not to be accepted but to intrusive. There is no choice in the matter societally. If not included in all areas of church matters it will be considered a “Hate Crime”. That day is upon the Churches of our land, including Baptists.

Scouts Proposes Gay Youth Not Gay Leaders

Scouts Proposes Gay Youth Not Gay Leaders

Michael Foust of Baptist Press does a good job in presenting the true imbalance of those opposing Boy Scouts being expanded to Gay Scouts!  However, while the nation’s attention was turned to Boston on Friday morning, the Boy Scouts of America announced that it intends to end its ban on gay members, as long as its board approves the change. The organization would still, however, prohibit gay adults from serving as troop leaders or volunteers.

The proposed new policy states, “No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone.” The proposed policy also reinforces the organization’s position that “Scouting is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.”

The change would apply only to members; it does not change the policy regarding gay troop leaders or other volunteers. “The BSA will maintain the current membership policy for all adults,” said Deron Smith, the group’s spokesman.

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Scouts propose allowing gay-identifying youth

Posted on Apr 19, 2013 | by Michael Foust

IRVING, Texas (BP) — Members at the Boy Scouts national convention in May will consider a proposal that would leave in place the prohibition on homosexual Scout leaders but would allow youth who identify as gay to join, it was announced Friday (Ap

bsaEmblemThe proposed policy, unanimously approved by the Boy Scouts executive committee, differs significantly from a proposal that was discussed in February that would have allowed openly gay leaders and youth to join. That policy would have made it a “local option,” whereby each sponsoring organization would decide the policy. Under the new proposal, there is a national standard and no local option.

“No youth may be denied membership in the Boy Scouts of America on the basis of sexual orientation or preference alone,” the proposed resolution states in part.

The resolution criticizes sexual activity by youth, saying Scouting “is a youth program, and any sexual conduct, whether homosexual or heterosexual, by youth of Scouting age is contrary to the virtues of Scouting.” Two paragraphs later it further says that “youth are still developing, learning about themselves and who they are, developing their sense of right and wrong, and understanding their duty to God to live a moral life.”

The Boy Scouts leadership appeared poised in early February to lift its prohibition on gay Scout leaders and youth but — facing pressure from its base — decided to put the matter before its 1,400 voting members at the national convention, which will be in May.

Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, was outspoken earlier this year in urging the Boy Scouts to keep their current policy.
Frank_Page5ap
“We said in January we wished the Scouts would listen to the whole scouting family, not just a few,” Page said Friday. “The leadership listened. Chief among the concerns they heard is the influence of adult leaders on impressionable youth. Though this resolution is more acceptable to those who hold a biblical form of morality than what was being considered before, we would still prefer no change in the policy. A No vote keeps the current policy in place, an outcome we would overwhelmingly support.”

Also on Friday, the Boy Scouts released the results of a series of surveys it conducted.

Among the findings:

— 61 percent of adult Scout members favor the current policy, while 34 percent oppose it.

— 61 percent of Boy Scout parents support the current policy, while 50 percent of Cub Scout parents back it (45 percent of Cub Scout parents oppose it).

— 51 percent of major donors support the current policy while 33 percent oppose it. But a majority of Fortune 500 companies want to see the policy changed.

— A majority of teens ages 16-18 in the Boy Scouts program oppose the current policy. A percentage was not given.

Scouts Moral 01The Boy Scouts also said that parents, teens and the Scouting community “do not favor” a local option as proposed in February.

 

Michael Foust is associate editor of Baptist Press. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress), Facebook (Facebook.com/BaptistPress ) and in your email (baptistpress.com/SubscribeBP.asp).

SBC Talk of Local Church Bylaws Add Marriage Statement

SBC Talk of Local Church Bylaws Add Marriage Statement

The homosexual political agenda has gained a momentum that may overwhelm Baptist churches. Most pastors are just attending to their congregational priorities without paying too much attention to the potential of law suits that could jeopardize local church autonomy as well as every member’s First Amendment  There is a lot of conversation among Southern Baptist leaders that local church bylaws should define Marriage and Sexuality.
This conversation is one that is important for all churches who have incorporated with their states.  Most Associational Baptist churches as well as Independent churches have a statement of their bylaws registered with their incorporation. Attending to this subject and amending church bylaws now may save heart aches
later. 
You may access Dr. Champions Facebook and post comments – www.Facebook.com/brochampion
  Every Baptist Church should heed this  article and schedule Church Wide Meetings on this issue.
 
 

NASHVILLE (BP) — With the U.S. Supreme Court set to take up gay marriage and potentially legalize it this summer, churches that host wedding ceremonies or other events for traditional couples should examine their bylaws and shield themselves from the impact of possible litigation, says an attorney who specializes in religious liberty issues.

“We’re in a day where every church needs to have a statement in its bylaws of its doctrinal beliefs on marriage and sexuality.” — ADF attorney

The justices are scheduled in March to hear two cases concerning gay marriage, and by June could either uphold the traditional definition of marriage or legalize gay marriage in all 50 states. Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) — a religious liberty legal organization — is hoping for the former but preparing churches for the latter, just in case.

A number of situations could place churches in legal trouble, such as congregations who would:– allow a traditional couple but not a same-sex couple to use their facility for a wedding ceremony.

— allow a traditional couple but not a same-sex couple to take part in a marriage class or retreat.
— terminate an employee involved in a same-sex wedding.

Bylaw language defining marriage in the biblical sense doesn’t mean a church won’t face a suit or a complaint, but it does mean the church would be in a much better situation legally, said Erik Stanley, senior legal counsel for ADF.

“I think we’re in a day where every church needs to have a statement in its bylaws of its doctrinal beliefs on marriage and sexuality,” Stanley told Baptist Press. “This is a proactive approach that churches can take to head off any claims of discrimination in the future, should they occur. There’s no magic language for such a bylaw statement, but it should be some form of a statement of the church’s religious beliefs.”What that does is it allows for a good defense of a church to any type of discrimination claim that may arise, by saying, ‘Look, this is part of our religious beliefs.’ When we fight on the ground of protecting a church’s religious belief, then we have a lot of ammunition in our arsenal from a constitutional perspective.”Even without gay marriage legal nationwide, there have been lawsuits against churches.

In 1999 a woman who had worked as a youth minister at a Colorado Episcopal church was terminated after it was learned she was a lesbian living with another woman. She sued in federal court, but the lawsuit was dismissed, with the court ruling her suit was barred by the First Amendment. (The case was Bryce v. Episcopal Church in Diocese of Colorado.)

In 2001, a California church’s worship minister, Bob Gunn, was let go when it was discovered he was gay. He sued the church, primarily because the pastor told the congregation why Gunn — who was popular with members — had been fired. The church won in court. (The case was Gunn v. Mariners Church.)

Some churches have affirmed the Baptist Faith & Message 2000, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman and calls homosexuality sinful. Asked whether the BF&M would be sufficient, Stanley replied, “That would be just fine for churches to adopt the BF&M 2000 in their bylaws on this issue. But the BF&M 2000 does not necessarily address the issue of human sexuality in depth, especially the issue of homosexual behavior. Churches may want to consider adopting a fuller statement regarding their biblical beliefs on human sexuality.”

ADF has listed on its website suggested bylaw language for churches. (Read the two ADF articles on the subject — http://www.alliancedefendingfreedom.org/content/docs/issues/church/Suggested-Lang-Church-bylaws.pdf andhttp://www.speakupmovement.org/Church/Content/userfiles/Resources/church_seven_bylaws.pdf. Also, read the suggested language at the end of this article.)

“What we tell churches is that the clearer and the more explicit you can make your religious beliefs about those issues, the better off you are going to be in defending yourself against a claim of discrimination,” Stanley said. “Because then it becomes: You’re not discriminating against an individual based upon their sexual orientation or marital status. You’re making a decision to abide by your religious beliefs. And that’s protected by the Constitution. The more that we can move this from the ground of a claim of discrimination based on sexual orientation or marital status to the ground of ‘We are simply abiding by our deeply and sincerely held religious beliefs,’ the better off a legal defense is going to be.”

The legalization of gay marriage, Stanley said, will impact religious freedoms.

“Religious liberty is on the chopping block any time same-sex marriage is legalized or normalized in the culture,” he said. “But we’re not defenseless and we’re not left hopeless. If same-sex marriage is legalized by the Supreme Court, these types of cases that we see pop up, they’re just going to become more commonplace.”

In January, Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, urged Southern Baptists and other Christians to pray for the Supreme Court as it takes up the issue of marriage. Read his column here.

Following is ADF’s suggested language on marriage and sexuality for church bylaws:

“We believe that term ‘marriage’ has only one meaning and that is marriage sanctioned by God which joins one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture.

“We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other. We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.

“We believe that any form of sexual immorality, such as adultery, fornication, homosexuality, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, pornography or any attempt to change one’s sex, or disagreement with one’s biological sex, is sinful and offensive to God.

“We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of the church as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the church members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by the church in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, should abide by and agree to this Statement on Marriage and Sexuality and conduct themselves accordingly.

“We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ.

“We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity. Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with scripture nor the doctrines of the church.”
–30–
Michael Foust is associate editor of Baptist Press. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress), Facebook (Facebook.com/BaptistPress ) and in your email (baptistpress.com/SubscribeBP.asp).

The Trials of the Third Church of China

The Trials of the Third Church of China

November 4, 2010 | Da Yong –

Little to no knowledge of the Bible

The growth explosion in the Third Church of China is causing a great deal of stress and trials.  Even though the TC is made up of intellectuals there is a great void in solid biblical teaching.  Remember that China has been essentially a spiritual vacuum for over 60 years.  China is officially atheistic to it’s core even though there is a State run church.  From schools to home Chinese learn from day one that there is no God.  There is no understanding of basic Bible stories let alone deep theological issues.  Kids in the USA have a greater understanding of the Bible than most TC Christians.  This causes many false teaching and cults to grow out of this lack of understanding of the harder theological issues.  One of the strongest cults in China is known as ”Lightning from the East” lead by a woman who says she is Jesus.

Lack of Full-Time Workers

Even though all these TC fellowships are popping up all over the urban centers of China there is a lack of leadership (pastoral and lay leaders) among them.  Member care is falling short because there are large numbers coming to the Lord and very few people to disciple, guide and ground these new Believers.  There is a real need for pastoral/lay leadership training to help build up and strengthen the new coverts and to keep out false doctrines, teachings and the cults.  It is unfortunate that many of the new Believers are not receiving the milk they need as ”baby Believers” and end up falling away.  One church that we helped plant was being lead by a pediatric heart surgeon.  This Brother was working 60 plus hours a week as a doctor, he is married and has a newborn.  On top of all of that he needed to be ministering to his flock.  In reality this Brother should be a lay leader not the pastor, but, there was no one else that could take his place.

Intellectuals and Continued Learning

The intellectuals that make up the TC fellowships pursue knowledge and wisdom continuously.  The Chinese have a real love for reading and expanding their knowledge on a wide variety of subjects.  In the past most Christian literature was written to the uneducated masses in the country-side.  These books are intellectually inferior to the TC Believers.  They find these books and materials too simplistic.  Some big cities in China now have Christian book store with a wide variety of Western Christian books translated into Chinese, but, the supply for the demand simply does not make the cut.  The need for more resources is staggering.  The Chinese Christians here in the West need to help meet this need by translating more Christian resources.

Living Daily for Christ

In our work among the Chinese we saw a real disconnect between “my Sunday life as a Christian and my weekly life as a citizen”.  The mentality was that they were two separate lives that did not merge together.  One brother explained as most Chinese look at their faith as a “hobby”, something they did on the weekends.  The TC Believers need relevant and practical training for every day life.  They need to understand that their faith is not a “hobby”, but, a radical life changing event that goes everywhere with them.  Whether it is the home, the
office, on the street or in church they exist for the glory of God and therefore they need to live their new life out in front of everyone.  The Chinese are faced with more and more social problems as the country as a whole gains wealth, power and influence.  Divorce, abortions, homosexuality, immorality and many more sin issues are coming to the surface and the TC Believers need to be grounded so they can resist these sins as well as help unbelievers out of these troubles to Christ.  Training the TC Believers is a huge task, but, it will be well worth the effort when we see the TC making a godly influence at all levels of life.

How Can You Help

Prayer of course is the first step in helping our fellow Brothers and Sisters in China.  Pray for the need for more full-time workers, literature and training materials to be translated and that their Biblical knowledge will be increased and deepened.  We are all called to SEND and to GO, so, which of these two are you doing?  There is no in between!  If you want to know more about how you can help send or go contact the author of this article.

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Da Yong
American serving the Lord in China
Contributor – Baptist.org

Featuring : The Trials of the Third Church of China
email: btw4ayear@yahoo.com