Saturday, November 19, 2005

My rant on the NC Baptists & their anti-gay policy stance

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In reference to: Winston-Salem Journal article on NC Baptist State Convention & its stance on homosexuals: I'm not wanting to debate the theological implications of homosexuality. I grew up in a Baptist church though. In many ways my theology is still pretty much Baptist. On one level, as a gay rights activist, I am upset with this vote because I see it as anti-gay, but more importantly as a Christian and fellow brother in Christ, I do not understand why the NC Baptist Convention would vote to kick out these churches. Churches are like families and unconditional love should be the rule. Yes, the majority of folks within the convention may see homosexuality as a sin or an abomination but does that mean that they must kick out churches who let gay people join? No. They should let these churches stay, because they are family. Tell them that you disagree with them, but don't kick them out. Jesus did that...he never turned people away, even if he did think what they were doing was wrong. One of the major Baptist creeds is "soul freedom," which means each person should be able to interpret what God wants from them by themselves. No person has the right to tell another person what to believe. The Baptist faith has been built upon this principal and now the current leadership of the North Carolina Baptist State Convention is changing this principal by adopting policy statements which seek to limit "soul freedom," as well as the famed Baptist principal of "church freedom." The State Baptist Convention of North Carolina, along with the Southern Baptist Convention, needs to stop limiting the powers of individual churches by making them ascribe to creedal statements other than the basic God is God, Jesus is Jesus and the affirmation of Jesus as Saviour and Lord. To make churches believe this or that in order to stay a part of the convention is to become more like the the Roman Catholic Church or the Church of England. The North Carolina Baptist State Convention should have never adopted this anti-gay resolution. And I now take the time to apologize for all of the more gay-friendly residents of Winston-Salem, as a native of Winston-Salem myself. I'm sorry such an anti-gay thing had to come from our city. I'm sorry that the City of Winston-Salem's name is being associated with something that I know not all of our citizens agree with. The NC Baptists need to learn what "love" really means... it means accepting all people... if you disagree with someone tell them that... but don't kick them out of your family.