As a gay Christian I know more about the obstacles Christianity lays in front of gay people, but to a large extent these obstacles are similar to the ones that most of the other major religions present. The major religions that see homosexuality as sinful or unacceptable are Christianity, Orthodox Judaism, Islam, Mormonism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Zoroastrianism. Religions that do accept homosexuality as normal are, among others smaller, Reformed and Reconstructionist Judaism, Confucianism, Taoism, Paganism, Unitarian Universalism, and Humanism. It is also fair to say that there are groups within most religions that do not put any obstacles in front of the gay community. In other words not all members of any religion see homosexuality as sinful or unacceptable.
As the religion practiced by the largest percentage of the world's population Christianity always finds itself in the middle of the discussions about homosexuality. Most Christian churches accept the fact that people can have same-sex attraction and does not view the attraction itself as sinful. They believe however that acting on this attraction, in other words living a homosexual life, is sinful. This is normally based on a few Scriptural references and Natural theology. Both Scriptural and Natural references can be interpreted differently and therefor not all Christian churches agree that homosexual acts are sinful.
Those that do interpret these references as clear proof that a homosexual lifestyle is sinful tries to put the following obstacles in the way of homosexual living:
- Canvasing that governments should not allow same-sex marriages
- Canvasing that governments should not allow same-sex couple to adopt or raise children
- Denies same-sex couples the right to get married with a church wedding
- Denies homosexuals the right to be ministers or church-officials
- Denies homosexuals the right to be church members without disciplining them in some way
- Propagate to parents of gay children to change their children's sexuality through conversion therapy or other church programs.
- Some even propagate that parents should ban homosexual children from their homes.
The reason I mention these obstacles is to show gay people and the parents of gay children what obstacles they may encounter if they are religious. Fortunately there are other churches that do not agree with this and accept gay people with open arms as full members of their community. These churches include, among many others, the following:
- In Canada there are the United Church of Canada, the United Church of Christ, The Episcopal Church, the Presbyterian Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada.
- In the US there are the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Metropolitan Community Church which was founded specifically to serve the Christian gay people or the LGBT community. Furthermore the United Church of Christ and the Alliance of Baptists also condone gay marriage.
- Within the Anglican Church, the Lutheran Church of Sweden, and the US Episcopal Church there are openly gay clergy.
- In South Africa there are the Adonai Fellowship, Agape Revelation Church, Beth-Haran Ministries, Reformerende Kerk, Metropolitan Community Churches, The Chapel, Agallia Ministries and Deo Gloria Family Church.
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