Holler If You Hear Me: Black and Gay in the Church

Discussion in 'Race, Religion, Science and Politics' started by Kouncelor, Nov 4, 2015.

?
  1. Absoulutely

  2. Not in the Black church

  3. Only in the Black Church

  4. Absolutely NOT

  5. I have no idea

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  1. Kouncelor

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    #1 Kouncelor, Nov 4, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
  2. Cyrus-Brooks

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    The real question isn't whether or not is there a place for gay people in the black church or church in general. The real question is why would gay people even want to belong to such a monstrous and destructive institution? It's because of the church we are in the position were in American society where we still have to struggle to be respected as human beings. In places where the church has even more influence, like Africa and the Caribbean gay people are in even more of dangerous position where they can be imprisoned, beaten up, tortured, or even executed by a lynch mob. The church encourages the state to sanction this. Even now in the USA the church, including black churches oppose gay rights, promote anti-gay attitudes, and discrimination. Why would any gay person support and want to belong to an institution that hates you, that says you're an abomination, that says you should be executed, that says you will not enter the kingdom of god? Christianity has been dehumanizing and encouraging hatred of gay people for centuries. Believing in this backward and repressive mythology is like a Jewish person who wants to belong to the Nazi party.
     
    #2 Cyrus-Brooks, Nov 4, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
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  3. Kouncelor

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    Well. that's your question and clearly you have strong convictions about "Church".

    I have to ask:
    1. Why place all churches in the same category? There are those that do embrace SGL individuals. (Watch the video)
    2. Religion is a separate issue...and its more about how it is practiced and interpreted. What are your thoughts?
     
  4. Discordant

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    I grew up in the church. My dad is a deacon, I've taught Sunday school for 16 years (I'm 29) and there have been times when I haven't felt welcome but what's interesting to me is to see my pastor's mind and take on homosexuality change over the years. There were a few times I almost left my church because of his ridiculous and random diatribes against homosexuals (though fifteen years ago, we were "sissies" to him,) but after finding out one of his good friends from college was gay and a theologian, there's been a shift in his attitude. As a Sunday school teacher I've never been afraid to challenge my students' views on the topic, especially when you can tell they're just using Biblical "talking points." I've seen a much more tolerant group of young Christians grow (and it may not just be my influence) which validates my efforts.

    You don't influence change by retreating from the system; you change it from the inside.
     
  5. Cyrus-Brooks

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    I place all churches in the same category because they all claim to believe in the same book(the Bible). The Bible is actually quite clear and mercilessly cruel on this and other issues. Whether most churches actually follow what's in the bible is another question. I cringe at the idea of what society would look like people actually did follow the Bible to the letter. Modern-day Christians especially those who call themselves "liberal" or "progressive" come up with all sorts of creative and intellectually dishonest ways to dismiss the barbarism of the Bible and by extension Christianity. Which leads me to ask the question is if you're gonna dismiss parts of the Bible and make nice with gay people why not dismiss the whole thing?
     
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  6. Discordant

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    I have to disagree. The barbarism in the Bible is in the Old Testament and technically under a different set of rules than the New Testament which is what Christianity is (supposed to be) based on. In fact, church reform was Jesus's main mission on Earth and was the main reason he was killed so brutally. The New Testament is (mostly) full of lessons of tolerance, the way to live in a way that is appeasing to God, and the ways the early Christians did things to grow the church and survive.
     
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  7. Kouncelor

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    I also have to add that the when examining the bible, in its entirety, it must be put in to the appropriate socio-cultural-historical contexts of the time. As well, It has been found that many of the translations are not actually accurate. For example, "Virgin" in the original language does not necessarily man they haven't been with a man, but a woman of marriage age.

    Additionally, the "Bible" as we know it is a collection of God INSPIRED writings that were bound together by a group of men. There were other God INSPIRED writings.

    Some churches today are truly being progressive and applying the Bible with love and tolerance (as @Discordant stated of the new Testament). Many ministers are realizing that many of the "rules and regulations" in the Bible were more cultural norms of the time and have studied so that they may appropriately exegete the scriptures before delivering messages to their congregation.

    @Cyrus-Brooks , thanks for your candor. Based on your comments, I believe it is safe to say that your spiritually is important to you, and based on your experience, you would not want to be someplace that will destroy your spirit and your faith.

    I can say that not all Churches "believe" and interpret the Bible in the same way... so I feel there is a place for everyone... whether you are Protestant, Catholic, Muslim, Jewish, Bahai, or other. While I was raised in a pentecostal church, my parents told my siblings and I that they didn't care what church we went.. as long as we went.
     
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  8. Cyrus-Brooks

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    Yes, yes I've heard that the OT doesn't count anymore from Christians many times before. It's a common excuse. The OT doesn't count except when it does count and Christiansee can cherry pick which verses are still relevant. That smacks of intellectual dishonesty to me. If Jesus even existed the reason he was killed was because pissed off the Jewish religious authorities and theyou got Roman empire to do their dirty work for them. Also the apostle Paul says you won't enter heaven and that is in the NT. It seems to me if you truly believe in the Bible worshipping the god of Israel is an exercise in futility.
     
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  9. Discordant

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    What I'm telling you is that they shouldn't be cherry picking any of it, either. I agree that if you want to use the Old Testament you need to use all of it. That's why I respect the Seventh Day Adventists so much; they follow Leviticus law to the letter. But the New Testament is clear that we don't need to follow those rules anymore; they served their purpose (protection and growth of the Israelite tribes while in hostile territory.) As for Paul, the scripture you're referring to was not about homosexuality in and of itself. That scripture was talking about pagan rituals that included the use of temple prostitutes (it was a thing back then.) Since I'm not engaging in sacred orgies to Dionysis, I'm pretty sure I'm good on that front.
     
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  10. Cyrus-Brooks

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    Actually no, spirituality is not important to me personally. I don't believe in spirits, ghosts, souls, angels, demons, the devil, god, or anything the supernatural. In fact as an adult I've become deeply suspicious of any claims made by any religion. From my vantage point all religions are different versions of the same fraud made up by ancient people who didn't know where the sun went at night, why earthquakes happen, what causes disease, or other natural phenomenon took place. It's mythology passed off as truth.
     
  11. Kouncelor

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    I do have to agree with the New Testament had the new laws. Now, can lessons in life be learned from the OT, yes. The foundation of the NT is Jesus and Love and Tolerance, regardless of what ANY other individual in the Bible says.
     
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  12. Kouncelor

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    Religion and Church and Spirituality aside.. do you think there is something...a being, maybe, out there greater than us, or is it just all science?

    I truly do believe that there is a LOT of mythology passed off as truth, like you say. I also don't have any conflicts between Evolution and Creation theories. Religion I see as merely a template or framework that people use to document/explain their faith/spirituality. In many ways, science is a religion, when you speak of unproven theories. Do I believe there is a greater being? Yeah. I call this being God.. but I will NOT argue with anyone uses other name or names (e.g. those who practice Yuriba). Belief is a very personal thing.
     
  13. Cyrus-Brooks

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    No, I don't think there is a god, or higher power, or creator. I think the physical universe is all there is and we inhabit a small somewhat unremarkable corner of it. Science is not a belief system it is a body of knowledge and is a method for obtaining knowledge. As for creationism it is not even a theory. Theory has to have some evidence to back it up to be accepted by the scientific community. Creation myths are taught by religions as absolute inerrant truth. Back to god there are so many gods worshipped by humans. The Abrahamic god most people worship is not the only game in town. He happens to be popular at this historical moment because for centuries Christians and Muslims conquered, murdered, and forced pagans to convert. I think it's telling no one else on earth heard of Yahweh/Allah/god the father before Christians and Muslims became the biggest bullies on the block. Every action taken by this god only takes place in the ancient middle-east. But this so called god is supposedly the creator of all human beings and the entire universe. I find such a claim to be dubious.
     
    #13 Cyrus-Brooks, Nov 4, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
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  14. Michael

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    I grew up in the church, however I do not consider myself religious now. I can understand people need hope and something or someone to believe in, but I just can't sit there whenever they have the homosexual sermon. It's too much for me and always has been.
     
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  15. mojoreece

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    Black people tend to be apart of conservative denominations. But it really depends on the theology of the local church or churches denomination. There are some churches that are apart of a theological conservation denomination but the local church is very liberal and inviting to mgm/sgl people. But this tends to sometimes put them at odds with the with officials in the larger denomination. Then you have churches that are apart of liberal denominations ie. (United Church of Christ) that are also open to all. It really depends on both. There's is a new trend of gay blacks starting there own independent churches and denominations.
     
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  16. Kouncelor

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    The first Black Gay church I heard of started in the early 90's in NY. I can' remember the name but I know they met in Brooklyn. There may have been another in the LA and DC about the same time.
     
  17. OckyDub

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  18. Kouncelor

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    So, I understand thos individuals who just are not in to church or religion (or believe in God). I'm not here trying to convert or change anyone's views. What I do want to understand is for those individuals who do not go to a church ONLY because of the anti-gay doctrine, what not try a church that is welcoming and accepting of everybody. A church that has a ministry of true acceptance?
     
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  19. mojoreece

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    yeah your right. What I meant to say is that younger ministers are more wiling to start churches now. Particularly in the south. Also, recently there's been a shift in some black churches willing to be more accepting. The ones that did it in the 90's did it when nobody was doing it; at least not in a black church format. The United Church of Christ has always been liberal but they are mostly white with expect a few black congregations like Trinity UCC in Chicago. I think many younger black gays are realizing that they have the freedom to establish their own religious institutions that also reflect the African american experience.
     
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  20. Cyrus-Brooks

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    I understand that and that's all well and good. The question I'm asking is why should we kowtow to such erroneous beliefs in the first place? Christianity, Islam, Judaism or any other religion doesn't have a logical leg to stand on. These mythologies and the people who believe then don't have a monopoly on morality or truth. These ideas aren't even objective truths. They can't even agree on which version of the truth is the real truth. So I say to gay brothers and sisters why even bother? We shouldn't be seeking validation from mythology we shouldn't be bucking the system and exposing it for the fraud that it is.
     
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  21. Nick Delmacy

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    This is a good question that I think there is likely no good answer to...Maybe it comes down to desperately wanting the acceptance of those that do not like them...or feeling like the venom that the congregation is throwing is not directed towards them in particular. Or they could be thinking that they want to change the views of the church from the inside.
     
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  22. OckyDub

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    Kinda agree...I say Stockholm syndrome plus tradition.
     
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  23. cypher21

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    I might not be the most qualified person to speak on this, as I have been struggling with my faith lately as well, but I don't think it's fair to only state the negative things religion has done even as a gay person. Religion, like science, can used to destroy yes, but it has also been used to create as well. Inspire hope and clairity to billions of people, provide education and development of fields of research used to this very day, hospitals, charities, and philosophies that promote love, respect, generosity to others and development of self worth and growth.

    People's desire for power and control, and their own interpretations of any given faith is the cause of all of the hate, and the way they used it to harm others is what causes so much suffering and pain.

    I continue to be a Christian now because....well it's all I've ever known, but in admitting to myself now, I've realized that it's not about tradition or pleasing a specific person, it's about your faith and personal spiritual (or non spiritual) journey. Not believing in God will not make you any less or more of a person or free, there are anti-gay atheists and people out there that will hate you for any other reason....but I think there is room in the church for gay people.

    Jesus walked with sinners, not church folk, and his greatest commandments were of love. I'm not completely familiar with every religion mind you, but I'm sure that there are others that preach the similar doctrines.

    I really liked when you said this Discordant! I think this may be why some people stay in churches that are less accepting sometimes... It's not easy to change a certain mindset overnight.

    At this point I feel like I'm up in the air with certain beliefs, but I still just want to be a good person like I think we all do :francis:
     
    #23 cypher21, Nov 5, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2015
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  24. D'Elle Brothers

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    My experience is limited to the non denominational church. And that has been that Homosexuality is not accepted. You will be asked to change or convert and get married. I tried and couldn't get one of those church women to date me once they found out my story.
     
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  25. D'Elle Brothers

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    I haven't allowed my church experience change my belief in God, I've just concluded that I will not practice or worship my God as a member of any church at the moment. I'm open to visit churches but not become a member.
     
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  26. bpaisle

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    My grew up in the church, somewhat. My parents weren't super strict with us on it. If we did not want to go, then we weren't forced to go. (I usually didn't go.) I've just never really been into it. I definitely believe in a higher power but religion can be a bit off-putting so I can see why some homosexuals shun the church. I've never had the experience of being in church and the pastor was denouncing homosexuality and I was in the pew like..
    976ce2fdb0de9a666c11f68a650e66f2.jpg.gif

    Maybe if I had I might feel differently but I have no problem going to church. To tell you the truth, I feel like there are plenty of churches that are welcome everybody. So it's fine to have a problem with religion but not being able to find a church that accepts you can't really be used as an excuse these days.
     
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  27. D'Elle Brothers

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    I don't let people's opinion about Homosexuality stop me from going to church either. I'll go when I want, but I don't talk to any members about my sexuality. I've learned my lesson there. From now on that's between me and God! !
     
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  28. Nick Delmacy

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    These are like...kinda contradictory sentences though, right? This goes to what @Kouncelor was asking, "Why would you want to go to a particular church where the congregation and preacher views you with disdain or as being sinful?"

    Why not just go to a NEW church that accepts your sexuality enough so that you can at least talk to them about it?
     
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  29. D'Elle Brothers

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    I was brought up to go to non denominational churches so that's the reason why those are churches I only go to. But I'm not opposed to going to other types of churches so if you have one in mind or know of any of the type you describe please share the info
     
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    I hear you, bro, but this doesn't really answer the question....

    So you would go to a church that believes you're sinful and lowly as opposed to not going to a church at all?
     
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  31. Kouncelor

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    "Stockholm syndrome plus tradition". that is really deep. This could be worthy of some serious research.. thesis worthy. *note to self if I pursue that next degree*
     
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  32. Jaa

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    I went to church until I left for college because my mother expected me to go and I attended Catholic schools for 9 years. I got out of the house and it seemed like the right time to stop doing something I didn't enjoy. My confusion and discomfort with the church's stance on homosexuality played a part in me stopping, but I had kinda mentally checked out of church years before. I'd been daydreaming and falling asleep during Mass for years at that point. I also questioned the existence of God and his/her ways, the purpose of life, and the validity of religion, in general, and felt disturbed by the ways that some use religion to justify causing others pain. I felt the best reason to continue going was fear of damnation, which made me even more uncomfortable. I'm pretty sure I would have stopped going even if sexuality weren't a factor because it often made me feel worse rather than better, though I still find the art, ideas and histories interesting.

    Don't many treat church like a second family of sorts? It's hard to cut ties with that, especially if many of your family, friends and neighbors are there.
     
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  33. Cyrus-Brooks

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    Your story is very similar to mine in that I started to mentally checkout of religion around 17 or 18 and stopped going to church after high school. However I was raised in the Baptist Church which is very conservative. My mom is really religious. After reading the bible cover to cover as an adult I realized how absurd the whole enterprise of religion is. I became an atheist at 26, a year after I came out. Unlike you I no longer have any appreciation or tolerance for religion. As I've gotten older (in my 30s) I've come to despise religion, especially the Abrahamic faiths and resent the power that religion has.
     
    #33 Cyrus-Brooks, Nov 6, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2015
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  34. Kouncelor

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    Often when we have these conversations we use the a number of different words relative to our own personal experience. For example, many use the word "Church", where I would use the word Religion or Denomination. Some see the word"Spirituality" as a religious concept and others to not. I believe that it is important that we are using the same language in conversation, else the meaning or intent of our idea is NOT properly or effectively conveyed. I've made a meager attempt to attach some definition to terms used in this discussion. Agree? Disagree?
    • Church: in the most broadest terms, is a religions entity, organization, or institution, often, but not always with an edifice as its assigned location or "home-base" where individuals go for communal worship/ or practice of religious traditions.
    • Religion: could be the belief in a god or in a group of gods or an organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods. (traditions)
    • Denomination: a religious group or subgroup (e.g., Yoruba, Christian (w/ Protestant & Catholic subgroups), Judaism, Islam, Baha i, Taoism, and the list goes on)
    • Spirituality: this is probably the most difficult to define. To some, it is a religious concept. To others it is more scientific dealing with energy and nature. Still others it is combination that is not tied to a religion/church and either runs parallel to science and scientific theories or beyond them.
     
    DC., Discordant and cypher21 dapped this.
  35. Ishmal

    Ishmal Squad Member

    Age:
    31
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2015
    Messages:
    22
    Daps Received:
    34
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Dallas
    The older I get the more I have moved away from the church and all their workings. I grew up and the church and experienced the hypocrisy and I cannot support it.
    My frustration with the gay community is this hunger to be accepted by a business that no matter how much you give, time, money, skills, tithes, ect., they are not going to fully accept you. There may be some pockets of acceptance but overall we are still not accepted in the church.
    My anger with the black church is that they have forgotten their history. This church they are so quick to defend is the same church that justified slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, police brutality and a list of other things. Why do we hold on to something that just 300 years ago was used to demoralize us. Just doesn't make sense.
     
    grownman, DC., alton and 2 others dapped this.
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