by Rev. Dr. Cindi Love
by Jason Conner
It is my pleasure to announce to you an educational symposium the will be held in Philadelphia, PA on November 5-7th, 2010.Continue Reading »
by Bill Carpenter
From August 24 through August 26, Soulforce co-founder Mel White and I were in Napa, CA, representing Soulforce at the trial of our long time friend and colleague, the Rev. Dr. Janie Spahr. And, on August 27, a panel of six commissioners, sitting as judges on the Permanent Judicial Commission (PJC) of the Presbyterian Church(USA) through the Redwoods Presbytery, found Rev. Spahr “guilty of misconduct” for officiating at the weddings of sixteen gay and lesbian couples during that window of opportunity (June-November, 2008) when same sex couples could legally marry in California.
The Constitution of the Presbyterian Church(USA) defines marriage as a sacred union between a man and a woman and any Presbyterian clergy person who threatens to undermine that doctrine by performing a wedding for a lesbian or gay couple can be charged, tried and punished for their courageous act. The PJC could have imposed a penalty from a “censure by rebuke” to a removal of Janie’s ordination. Incidentally, she was found not guilty of similar charges at a trial by the same PJC of Redwoods Presbytery in 2006.
In other words, when asked to perform a same sex wedding ceremony which is legal under the laws of the State of California, the Presbyterian hierarchy demands that their clergy say “NO!”. Janie, like so many courageous Presbyterian clergy before her, refused to obey the unjust and discriminatory doctrine and said “YES!” instead.Continue Reading »
by Guest Author
John D. Powell, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist. He was a staff psychologist at the University of Illinois Counseling Center from 1984-2007. During his 23 years there, he served in several capacities in addition to providing individual and group therapy: Coordinator of Intern Training, Chair of Trauma Response Team, Adjunct Professor in Psychology, and clinical supervisor for many doctoral trainees.
The National Association of Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) recently published a letter addressing some misconceptions and misinformation regarding NARTH. The letter is respectful in its tone and compelling in its content, as long as one holds the same views of homosexuality as NARTH. Their view is that people who are “dissatisfied with their unwanted homosexual attractions should be given the opportunity to choose their own path and to pursue change if they so desire.” The implication is that those who discover they are attracted to some individuals of the same sex but are uncomfortable with that attraction are probably not homosexual to begin with, and should therefore have the chance to “receive assistance in pursuing a different identity.”
While this sounds reasonable and respectful, NARTH appears to dismiss the fact that a vast majority of gay and lesbian youth and adults who have grown comfortably into their sexual identity have also experienced periods of dissatisfaction with their unwanted homosexual attractions during the coming out process. With few exceptions, gay and lesbian college students with whom I have worked described times during which they adamantly did not want to be gay. It is often a long and arduous emotional and interpersonal journey from initial curiosity and confusion to accepting their own identity. That journey almost always involves going through periods of profound fear of being gay and a longing that it not be true. These feelings are particularly intense in the early stages of coming out. Who would want to be gay or lesbian in a family, church, school, or culture that held such behavior as unacceptable, sinful, perverted, or shameful? With those messages in their ears, who would not have periods of “dissatisfaction with unwanted homosexual attraction?”Continue Reading »
by Guest Author
It all started with our wedding: the be-medaled uniforms on one side, the prochoice buttons on the other. Nope, nope, it started with the intervention, the dinner at which my friends planned to confront the self-delusional rationalization that I, the leftwing columnist, had contrived for accepting the proposal of a Marine. A Marine colonel, no less. Problem was, it turned out they liked him.
And he met my political litmus tests: He is prochoice, figures sexual orientation is irrelevant in battle, and actually gives thought to California’s unbridled ballot measures. Our marriage proceeded, and we’ve been playing house ever since, despite occasionally cancelling out each other’s votes.
Then, when Prop. 8 passed in 2008, my response was to staple a sign to our front gate: I DO Support the Freedom to Marry.
My husband came home, and the conversation went something like this:
by Guest Author
My business partner, Rachel Lee, and I were present at the Protest against the National Organization for Marriage when they were in St. Louis last week. We captured video and have created a story that we would like to share with you.
Katie Hotze is student clergy with MCC of Greater Saint Louis
by Guest Author
I was present at the NOM rally at the State Capitol in Raleigh on Tuesday, Aug. 10. Our counter-demonstration across the street outnumbered the NOM rally by 4 to 1. I was there wearing my Soulforce T-Shirt, holding my rainbow umbrella and pinwheel, and carrying a sign that read: “Love=Love Support Marriage Equality”. Yours truly was featured prominently in the following video
Cris Elkins is a long-time Soulforce supporter and participant.