The once near-universal brand of American Christianity is being associated with an ever-shrinking size of the American public. ...you may wake up one day and find that the overwhelming majority of the public has simply tuned out everything you have to say..... the window of opportunity where people might be willing to consider a more relevant form of modern Christianity is closing.Case in point: What we've heard lately from American "Christians". Such as Pastor Charles Worley
"Build a great big large fence 50 or 100 miles long," Worley said in a video..It's not the first time. Here's what he said 30 years ago:
"Put all the lesbians in there. Fly over and drop some food. Do the same thing with the queers and the homosexuals. Have that fence electrified so they can't get out. You know what, in a few years, they'll die out. You know why? They can't reproduce."
"Forty years ago [LGBT people] would've hung, bless God, from a white oak tree!"Pastor Sean Harris
....Harris told parents they are “authorized,” and that he was “giving them a special dispensation” to attack their children. “Give them a good punch,” and “crack that wrist,” Harris told parents, if their four-year old boy, for example, “starts acting a little ‘girlish’.”Pastor Ron Baity
....Baity, founding pastor of Winston-Salem's Berean Baptist Church and head of the anti-marriage equality organization Return America, referred to homosexuality as "a perverted lifestyle" in a Sunday sermon before telling his congregation that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people should be prosecutedThen there's Pastor Curtis Knapp
“They should be put to death,” Knapp declared. “‘Oh, so you’re saying we should go out and start killing them, no?’ — I’m saying the government should. They won’t, but they should.”Pastor Dennis Leatherman at least stopped short of death, though he kinda likes the idea:
“[God] said put them to death,” he continued. “Shall the church drag them in? No, I’m not say that. The church has not been given the power of the sort; the government has. But the government ought to [kill them]. You got a better idea? A better idea than God?”
First of all, there is a danger of reacting in the flesh, of responding not in a scriptural, spiritual way, but in a fleshly way. Kill them all. Right? I will be very honest with you. My flesh kind of likes that idea. But it grieves the Holy Spirit. It violates Scripture. It is wrong.Even the Baptists are trying to distance themselves from the hatred expressed by some of their number .
But over and over again, THIS is the voice of modern American Christianity: the one that calls for me to be forcibly separated from my wife, imprisoned, hurt, "cured", or murdered.
And so you know what I would like to hear? I would like to hear sensible faith leaders come together and make a ROBUST DISAVOWAL of this, loudly. An acknowledgement of differences, but a common belief that all life is, well, sacred. Not the easy to ignore anemic press release, but an ecumenical statement with full page ads in the major press.
You know, something like,
We as faith leaders may disagree on the scriptural and doctrinal responses to homosexuality, but we come together to state that there is never any justification to call for violence or death to gay people who are still beloved children of God.
Won't happen, of course. The Roman Catholic bishops and the Mormons and the evangelicals will continue their activism against the LGBT community part of which relies on demonizing lies.
So as the Episocopal church continues to debate "mission" and justify its big New York City national center, just maybe it should consider speaking out strongly against the demonization of LGBT people, under a forceful national voice. Or come together with like-minded denominations to do so.
Because, as our troll comments periodically, no one seems to know what you are thinking.
Otherwise, just what are they doing in that New York office?