Vicky Beeching is gay. So what?

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Last night before I went to bed I read an article in which it has been revealed in an interview with Vicky Beeching that she is a lesbian.  You can read the full article here. I’m not surprised at this revelation. In fact, I long saw it coming. Now, I’ve put my seatbelt and helmet on because I’m going to share some opinions based on the article that was written. I know I’ll probably get backlash, but I think that if we are properly going to dialogue and discuss the issues that surround the issue of same sex attraction and same sex marriage, we need to not just look at the core stuff, but also the peripheral. So here goes:

I have been blessed by Vicky Beeching’s ministry - It’s a crying shame that people have responded to Vicky’s support of same sex marriage by boycotting songs etc. Vicky’s ministry isn’t defined by what she believes about Same Sex marriage, and it isn’t THE test of orthodoxy which will keep her in or throw her out of the Christian community, and within the Christian community, the evangelical community. Vicky’s songs had a key influence in my growth as a Christian – I used to sing her songs in the car, used to lead them in worship at church, and I’ve followed her blog since she’s been writing. I value her as a thinker, a theologian, and flipping glad that she’s a woman on the main stage who does all these things. I take my hat off to her.

I have been saddened by reading the experiences that Vicky went through - It’s absolutely awful that Vicky has had to suffer because of her sexuality. I hate to think that the one place where one should be able to share anything was the one place she couldn’t go:

One night alone in her bedroom, still just 13 years old, the schism between feelings and beliefs overcame her.

“I felt like it was ripping me in half. I knew I couldn’t carry on. I was trying to align the loving God I knew and believed in with this horrendous reality of what was going on inside me,” she says. “I remember kneeling down and absolutely sobbing into the carpet. I said to God, ‘You have to either take my life or take this attraction away because I cannot do both.'” Her eyes glisten for the first time.

What an awful experience to go through as a young Christian finding your feet and also dealing with the reality of your sexuality. Absolutely heartbreaking.

I feel glad that Vicky has been able to reconcile with herself and show her “true identity” (for want of a better phrase) – I think it’s really good that she feels that she is now in a position to share her story with people, and that she clearly feels that the Church is now in a better state (relatively speaking) to accept her for who she is.

I feel disappointed by the way in which she decided to share the news - I do question Vicky’s motives to an extent in that I have a problem with the fact that rather than on her personal blog (which attracts thousands of visitors a day), Vicky decided to meet someone and basically sell a story to the national press. Clearly, she may feel that this would help and inspire others, but for me personally, I’d have benefitted from a stripped back, acoustic feel to the story in that it would be coming from her mouth, rather than through the filter of someone else. This, for me, creates other knock on problems.

I feel that Vicky has either ignorantly, foolishly, or deliberately allowed the name drop of Katherine Welby and Justin Welby – Vicky is a clever woman. I would have hoped that she would have read, pondered and prayed about this article before it went to print. I am a lover of the Church, and whilst I think there is definitely room for dialogue, forum and debate in this area (and us evangelicals have such a long way to go with same sex attraction / same sex marriage) I do love the Church too much to want to deliberately put it under pressure by name dropping the Archbishop of Canterbury and his daughter into this story. Of course, Justin and Katherine may not mind this at all, but I would feel that doing this turns the readers eyes to the CoE and I can hear them cry, “Look what you’ve done to her – you better issue an apology and pass canon law to allow same sex marriages”. OK – I might be putting words into people’s mouths, but surely you can see where I’m coming from? Yes, we do need to keep check on the Church and challenge things, but, rather than saying there’s a time and a place (which of course there is) I would also go as far to say that there is also a method in which to do it properly. Selling a story to a national newspaper, in my view, is distasteful.

I feel angry at the picture given of prayer ministry in the Church - I don’t know how much to believe of the “exorcism” stuff in the article. The article reads:

Beeching became subject to an altogether more extreme way to make her sexuality “pure”: an exorcism.

I ask her to name which camp it was, which organisation was responsible.

“Do I have to say?” she asks, with a half grimace. “It might make them look bad.”

“Yes, it will,” I say.

“This happens at a lot of them. It feels a bit mean to pick one,” she replies, chiming with an earlier comment: “I’m not angry with the Church.”

Instead, she takes herself back to that day. “I remember sitting in my seat at this big conference, with about 4,000 people. Someone had preached about how God could set you free from anything, and I was desperate, I thought, ‘I have to deal with this, it’s breaking me.’ They invited us to the front.” The shy teenager got up.

“The walk felt like 10 years. The music was very loud. At the altar one of the prayer team said, ‘What would you like us to pray for you about?’ I said, ‘It’s really hard for me to say this but I am attracted to people of the same sex and I’ve been told God hates that and I’m so ashamed and I need Him to take it away because I can’t keep living like this. I’m so sad and depressed, I can’t carry on.'”

Beeching stood with her arms outstretched as the leaders brought in extra people to perform the deliverance. “I remember lots of people placing their hands on my shoulders and back and front, praying in tongues really loudly and then shouting things: ‘We command Satan to let you go! Cast these devils out of you! We speak to you demon of homosexuality: let her go!’ People around me were wailing and screaming. It was really frightening. I was already feeling so vulnerable, it was horrible to think, ‘Am I controlled by demons?'”

How did it feel? “Degrading,” she says. “Very humiliating – it made me so embarrassed.”

Who knows whether the shouting of “Cast these devils out of you!” is true (it’s not written by Vicky herself), but I found it a very harmful piece of information to share in the light of the fact that the “many” Christian conferences out there don’t do this. I’m a part of one of them, on the prayer ministry team, and we’d never dream of doing something like that. We certainly don’t think homosexuality is a demon. And to add to that, the conference I go to is one where Vicky Beeching has led worship in the past. Prayer ministry in the church is of absolute importance. Vicky, whilst maybe being young, did volunteer herself for that ministry. I don’t want to undermine this experience if it is true, but it takes me back to the point that we would have so much more clarity if the words came from Vicky’s own blog. Vicky has shared the article, which gives it credibility, but still, the principle behind my concern stays the same…

I feel left with many unanswered questions about Same Sex Attraction and Same Sex Marriage - I am a conservative on this issue, though open. I realise that life is so messy, and we must as the Church, respond pastorally and in the same way as with any guest coming to the Church or as any family member of the Church. But that doesn’t necessarily mean allowing Same Sex Marriage. Vicky’s article talks about who she is – part of her identity is being attracted to the same sex. I’m still unconvinced by the arguments put forward by those who are pro same sex marriage, and I’m equally unconvinced by those who are anti same sex marriage who come up with all sorts of ridiculous claims and arguments. For me, the article seems to be a facet of Vicky’s quest to harmonise same sex marriage with the Bible and with the tradition and reason of the Church for the last 2,000 or so years, but simply saying “I’m gay” isn’t going to do justice to that quest, if it can be done. And of course, where I stand is that I don’t think it can.

I feel irritated by the Rita Skeeter style of the article – If any of you have read Harry Potter, you’ll know what I mean. Harry gets constantly irritated and annoyed by the emotionalism and sensationalism of the articles that Rita Skeeter writes about Him. I know I’m not Vicky Beeching or Harry Potter, but I’m the sort of guy that loves to hear things as they are. I feel the article is definitely written to pull heart strings and even to win people over based solely on feelings. Yes, it’s a national newspaper; we are to expect this. But in terms of theological reflection and a working out of our faith and what the Bible, Tradition, and reason have to say about homosexuality and same sex marriage, it makes it awfully difficult to do, because many of us like the easy way out. The easy way out is “I like this person. This person is same sex attracted. This person doesn’t seem anti-Christian. Same sex marriage must be OK cos God is love.” – May sound harsh and over simplified, but unfortunately this is the argument I hear the most. That and “Jesus was full of love, forgiveness and inclusiveness”. They’re not arguments. They are merely half truths and nice sentiments. The Bible is too robust and holy to minimise it to such a level. We must dig deeper.

I feel bewildered as to why Christians who are same sex attracted but are anti same sex marriage don’t get the same airtime – These group of people are quite large in number within the Church. I have friends in this exact position (as well as friends on the other side of the argument too) and it annoys me that people aren’t looking to them as much as they should be for opinion and reason on this whole debate.

I feel hopeful that the Church is beginning to listen, and that, whilst I don’t agree with same sex marriage, I fully support same sex individuals and it seems like the Church is getting on board with that - There has to be room to disagree in the Church. But at all times, we are made one in Christ and so our relationships go beyond our sexuality. I can see the good in this article – it’s one that has and will stir things up, and whilst I don’t agree with that aspect completely, I know that there will be some good to come out of it. If this article means more good dialogue and debate which is well informed, listened to on both sides, and isn’t reduced to petty name calling and boycotting, then we’re definitely making progress.

Thank you Vicky for finally being completely open and honest with us. Thank you for your bravery. Thank you for your ministry.

 

There’s probably more to add, but I’ll leave it there for now. I hope I have made it clear that I’m not writing this to offend or be arrogant. They’re just initial thoughts on something. Hopefully I have written this with love and not to cause hurt. Your opinions and contributions would be helpful too!

*UPDATE: Many have asked me to clarify what I meant about being unsure as to whether the exorcism was true or not. I wrote this post as soon as the original article was published (13/08/14) and published this post on the morning of 14/08/14. Since there has been a lot of dialogue in that time, Vicky Beeching has said that she did experience people calling for the devil to come out of her. When she was a teenager, this practice was definitely more prevalent than it is today. It isn’t common practice in the Church today, but it does still happen. This must have been a horrible experience for her, and it saddens me that the Church has treated people in this way. However, saying all this, prayer ministry, as I said in the original article, is massively important and goes wider than exorcisms. My concern is that the public will think that this goes on in their local Church every Sunday, which is simply not the case.

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Dean Roberts

Dean is an Ordinand training for ordination in the Anglican Church. He was born and bred in Wales, is married to Megan, and has a dog called Taliesin and a cat named Eira. He graduated from Cardiff University with a B.A Hons. in Theology and Religious Studies. He also holds a Cert.RSCM from the Royal School of Church Music. He loves playing music, walking, reading and blogging as well as going to the cinema and theatre. Read More @ http://deanroberts.net/about

  • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

    Someone pointed out to me regarding my point about prayer ministry that when Vicky was a teenager, things would have been very different, in that the church was much less accepting than even today. So in that sense, the Church has come some way in how it responds to someone saying “I’m gay”. But of course, it’s still not a helpful image to portray. The very fact that I didn’t see it from this angle demonstrates that it can be dangerous (I always remember Vicky as a young worship leader – even though she’s a few years older than me, it never felt like that in a sense!) :)

    • http://www.voidspace.org.uk/python/weblog/index.shtml Michael Foord

      I too recognise the picture of the evangelical church in the 80s and 90s. “Please don’t share your experiences of the church because it damages us (even though it damaged you more)” is a horrible response. Humility, and repentance where necessary, is the right response.

      • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

        Sure, though I wasn’t suggesting we cover up past failures and mistakes of the Church – rather we need, at the present time to see a balanced side to the Church. The context in which the article is written will cause readers to assume that this goes on today. And whilst it does, it is a VERY small minority of places, and certainly nothing mainstream. In that sense, it can be unnecessarily damaging to the Church.

        • http://www.voidspace.org.uk/python/weblog/index.shtml Michael Foord

          Victims of the church are not the ones needing to provide balance. And blaming her for not providing it (as you blame her for her choice of media to come out with) comes across at pretty straightforward victim blaming.

          The church has a *horrible* past and reputation on this. Most people who are gay, who have suffered trauma and rejection at the hands of the world, won’t come to the church because they *know* that they will experience more rejection. This is a horrible ironic tragedy. The heart of Jesus is for the lost and the hurt. And here we’re the ones doing the hurting! How anti-christ.

          The way we fix this isn’t by blaming the people we’ve hurt but by genuinely changing and *demonstrating* that we’ve changed.

          Your article does none of that.

          • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

            Michael – thanks for your opinion, but the article was written as an initial response. Vicky Beeching herself on her own blog states that blogging is limited in what it can achieve when discussing these really hot and serious topics.

            I’m not blaming Vicky for anything – what I’m saying is that we all have equal responsibility in protecting the Church, gay or not. I’m sorry to say this, but most people have been hurt by the Church at some point, including myself. And that’s cos we’re human. The Church isn’t perfect. That’s not to justify anything Vicky may or may not have experienced, it’s just the reality. And to try and victimise ourselves and others, again, isn’t going to help the situation.

            Apart from all this, Vicky made a choice in how she broke this news. She’s deliberately put herself in the spotlight on this issue, and we all know the real reason why now. It is to be expected for people to question motives and reasons for doing so. Just like I expected backlash with this post, though it’s taken all day for me to get some ;)

          • http://www.voidspace.org.uk/python/weblog/index.shtml Michael Foord

            The church has awfully and systematically persecuted homosexuals for a long time. Believing (wrongly) that homosexuality was a choice, that gay people were to blame for their condition and that there very existence was a sin. If you’re happy to dismiss this with “well we’ve all been hurt”, so be it. Feel free to deny that’s what happened and that’s what happens now. It’s just people victimising themselves and others after all.

            Yes I think that’s a bad response. A hard hearted one. One that won’t help the church and merely justifies it. This is an opportunity for the church to *change*. Maybe Vicky did expect people to question her motives (which is probably *why* she chose a major news outlet – if it was going to become news anyway then own the story). That doesn’t make it right or noble. You don’t have to go down that road.

          • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

            Like I said, I thank you for your contribution. As with the others, it’s been valuable. But actually the big picture of this whole debate is much bigger than what you’ve raised, and therefore you can’t round it off to making allegations against me of being hard hearted and dismissive of the Church. My article plainly says contrary. You’re very welcome to post on here, and you are, of course, entitled to disagree with me, but I’m cautious that this will be a circular argument, so with that in mind I don’t have anything else I’d like to add to this particular discussion. Thanks so much again for commenting :) It means a lot!

  • lucy webber

    Hey Deano :) thanks for the article think you speak with love and discernment. I too had the same thought about the choice of the press for this article but then I thought about how many different people her ministry extends too. I have seen more of Vickey on the TV/radio (thought for the day, debate panels, question time …..) than within the ‘christian world’ – thus I think it was an entirely appropriate place to do the interview in order to add to the discussion and extend her ideas within such domains (the Independent is perhaps the most equally weighted opinion paper as well!)
    I suppose I am coming from a different place to you as I fully support same sex marriage and relationships, and as such I am really glad that she has decided to speak out in favour of the church and LGBT theology in a non-church setting – other than her blog, am not sure what Christian domain would have reported this without promoting a theological viewpoint (?).

    • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

      Thanks Lucy for your comments. Really valuable! Well to answer your comments about Christian Domains publishing the article, I’ve just noticed that Premier Radio and Christianity Magazine have, and no doubt Christian Post will too – news services, rather than blogs so will get varied comments. Miss you!

  • ianjmatt

    I suspect I know the conference that Vicky is referring to – and the prayer teams tended (going back 16 – 20 years) to be young and enthusiastic. I can see how a lack of teaching on same sex attraction, coupled with getting rather carried away with things spiritual in prayer – the sort of over-the-top prayer-warrior type of thing – can lead to the damaging sort of experience that Vicky describes. In fact, I can remember seeing exactly this sort of thing in the mid-90s in various churches and conferences. Casting demons out of people, things, attitudes etc. One particularly traumatic one I remember at a very large and popular conference was a woman who went up for prayer (nothing specific requested it later turned out) but she had a very negative reaction when two men laid hands on her. They decided it was a demonic possession and laid hold firmer which made her struggle more. It ended with her screaming and two men holding her down whilst another prayer over her. It turned out she had been raped by two men a few months earlier and this was an extremely distressing post-traumatic experience for her. So Vicky’s descriptions are not beyond the realms of belief (even if the language is probably somewhat journalised up).

    • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

      How awful! Thanks for sharing though – very valuable insight!

  • http://smallbizdad.com/ Small Biz Dad

    The Bible is very clear on the subject of homosexuality. The Church must not lose sight of this. The fact is that too many denominations today have changed their viewpoints on homosexuality and openly accept it and refuse to call it sin. Same sex marriage is not acceptable in God’s eyes according to The Bible.

    However, with that being said. We are still commanded to love and show compassion. Too many churches today forget that and just stand with pointing fingers towards those who are openly gay. I’ve been in a couple of churches with different stances on this. Once church basically said…you can’t join us if you’re openly gay….we don’t want you. I don’t agree with this.

    The other church said…we don’t condone what you’re doing…but we still want you here with us…we love you…and Christ loves you. That is the right position.

    I hope she has made peace with her decision to come out. I feel that being honest is always the best policy however I agree with you that she could have gone about it in a better way. I just wish that more of the church would respond in love and not with pointing fingers.

    • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

      Thanks for this :) Yes – for those of us who disagree with same sex marriage or the practice of homosexuality, we must ask how we can best pastorally respond to and accommodate those in this position without compromising our beliefs. Really hard to do if others feel that the only way to be loving and accepting of gay people is to allow them to get married to same sex partners…

    • Dave Warnock

      “The Bible is very clear on the subject of homosexuality”

      Actually no it is not and simply saying that it is does not make it so.

      After all homosexuality as a word is recent “The term ‘homosexuality’ was coined in the late 19th century by a German psychologist, Karoly Maria Benkert.” http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/homosexuality/

      You cannot translate so recent a word into an ancient text and expect it to be clear.

      There are plenty of books that look at the complexities of what the Bible actually says, Vicky has pointed to some of them herself.

      We could start with an acknowledgement of our inconsistency in applying the Holiness and Purity Codes of Leviticus and with a recognition that hospitality (in a very alien way to us) is a key issue in the story of Sodom & Gomorrah.

      We could recognise that temple prostitution is a very different context to permanent, loving, consensual relationships between committed adults.

      But please stop pretending that everything is simple and clear!

      • http://smallbizdad.com/ Small Biz Dad

        Leviticus 18:22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.” I feel that it’s very simple and very clear. You may disagree…and that’s fine.

        • Dave Warnock

          Leviticus 19:19 is equally clear:

          Breed your livestock animals only with animals of the same kind, and don’t plant two kinds of seed in the same field or wear clothes made of different kinds of material.

          So do you keep this? If not why not?

          Do you eat Pork?
          Do you keep the Sabbath rules?
          Are you circumcised?

          • http://smallbizdad.com/ Small Biz Dad

            Jesus fulfilled the law of the Old Testament. He was the only one who perfectly kept the law. In the Book of Acts, the church revoked many of those cultural laws because they should not apply to the Gentiles. However, they affirmed sexual sins which would be Leviticus 18:22.

            However, let’s talk about sin. I sin all of the time. I’m not perfect. I don’t think the sin of homosexuality is worse than my sin. But I also don’t think it should be validated and celebrated. It is sin. You and I will probably never agree on this point but that’s Ok.

          • Dave Warnock

            Hopefully we can agree that over the years the Church has changed it’s views on which OT laws should be kept.
            We see in the Epistles change over diet and circumcision.
            In the last few hundred years we see a huge change in attitude to Slavery, although the NT does not say it is wrong.
            We are still in a time of change in our understanding of gender roles.
            The understanding of OT law has never been static in the Church.

            We can agree that homosexuality that is abusive, promiscuous, outside a loving, consensual, committed relationship is sin. That is what I understand Scripture to be condemning.

          • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

            Maybe you should take these issues and see whether or not they are redeemed as we go throughout scripture, and *how* they are redeemed. By that, I mean whether there is clarification on these “laws” or not…

          • Dave Warnock

            That is pretty much exactly my point (although not my language). It is not helpful to simply quote a verse from Leviticus as if that is some kind of deal clincher.
            The connections need to be shown and the argument has to be made.
            I recognise that this requires a lot more work than simply proof texting and opens the debate to other views which some find scary, but nobody is won over by a proof text (and that is especially true for non Christians).

    • http://www.exclusivechurch.com/ Lorenzo Fernandez-Vicente

      No it’s not, or are you arguing that all those who disagree with you are so dumb that they cannot even see this ‘very clear’ message? or of bad faith.

      • http://smallbizdad.com/ Small Biz Dad

        I have called no one dumb. Just because I don’t agree with someone doesn’t mean that we can’t have meaningful debate. My statement is my opinion which I feel is correct. You are perfectly free to believe as you will.

        • http://www.exclusivechurch.com/ Lorenzo Fernandez-Vicente

          Anyone who disagrees with a blatant fact, something that is ‘very clear’ as you put it, must be either quite stupid or wilfully ignorant, must they not?

  • The Church Mouse

    Wonder if I can help a little:

    “I feel disappointed by the way in which she decided to share the news” – it is her news, and she can announce it how she likes. Be assured it was a bigger deal for her to come out than it was for us to read about it, so give her a break. Besides, she writes for the Independent, so hardly a shocker.

    • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

      You are so right, which is why the readers are allowed to ask questions as to why she shared it in a particular manner.

      Church Mouse – as I said, I highly value Vicky and think she’s amazing, but when you’re in the public eye and put yourself there (as you know) then you must be open to these questions being asked (which I’m sure Vicky is). I *know* she’s allowed to announce it however she likes, I didn’t say contrary. But in the same way Vicky is allowed to announce her news however she likes, I’m allowed (and rightly so from my perspective) to be disappointed in the way she chooses for perfectly good reasons, I think.

      I don’t think it’s a question of giving her a break, it’s an attempt to understand. She may write for the Independent, but this in fact strengthens my point about why someone else wrote the article, and not her.

      In my opinion, always better to hear it from the horses mouth, and in the online world, if she has a blog (where she’s doing a series on Same Sex Marriage and associated theology) she should, in my opinion, have used that first and foremost. Given her public profile, the articles would have written themselves anyway and she would have been asked to be interviewed.

  • Dave Warnock

    I want to make a number of points but will use separate comments to make discussion easier.

    1. I think the critique of Vicky for using the media is unhelpful and irrelevant. Keep your argument to the actual issue not how Vicky chose how to come out (and for the record I suspect that if people had allowed her blog to feel a safer place then she might have used it. However, the way that she was attacked by so many on it cannot have encouraged her to use it).

    So I believe you post would be much more useful and less inflammatory without this paragraph (which does not help anyone):

    “I feel disappointed by the way in which she decided to share the news – I do question Vicky’s motives to an extent in that I have a problem with the fact that rather than on her personal blog (which attracts thousands of visitors a day), Vicky decided to meet someone and basically sell a story to the national press. Clearly, she may feel that this would help and inspire others, but for me personally, I’d have benefitted from a stripped back, acoustic feel to the story in that it would be coming from her mouth, rather than through the filter of someone else. This, for me, creates other knock on problems.”

  • Dave Warnock

    2. “I feel that Vicky has either ignorantly, foolishly, or deliberately allowed the name drop of Katherine Welby and Justin Welby”

    Her friendship is well known and Justin Welby has already spoken many times on the issue. The media will always be looking to make connections like this. With Katherine tweeting on it of course it was going to be picked up.

    Again, let’s focus on the issue rather than distractions.

  • Dave Warnock

    3. “I feel angry at the picture given of prayer ministry in the Church”

    Given the comments that others have made I’d like you change this a lot. Sadly prayer ministry is not always done biblically or ethically. Plenty of LGBTQ people describe similar experiences.

    So instead of blaming the victim (I hate victim blaming) why don’t we agree to feel anger at abusive prayer ministry? Why don’t we agree to feel anger at those who harm others and the gospel?

    • http://www.exclusivechurch.com/ Lorenzo Fernandez-Vicente

      God, I cannot even count the number of times I was told I was demon-possessed… it’s impeccably biblical though, is it not?

      • Dave Warnock

        :-(
        It is so very harmful and wrong!

  • Dave Warnock

    4. “I feel irritated by the Rita Skeeter style of the article ”

    Again, if you want to discuss the issue then do so instead of attacking things Vicky has no control over.

  • Dave Warnock

    5. “I feel bewildered as to why Christians who are same sex attracted but are anti same sex marriage don’t get the same airtime”

    Ok, so now we are getting towards the nub.

    First, I suggest that as far as the media is concerned there are only very subtle differences between this group and any other Christian position that rejects homosexuality

    Second, I suggest that this is not a very large group.

    Third, while I recognise a number of people in this group I find it a very difficult position to understand. It seems to me that while unlike the more conservative view it recognises homosexuality as real but then only supports chastity or post gay as options. I don’t understand how this fits either pastoral care or science.

    • http://www.peter-ould.net Peter Ould

      “Second, I suggest that this is not a very large group.”

      True Freedom Trust has a larger membership than Changing Attitude.

      • Dave Warnock

        Peter,
        I don’t know much about either. What sort of numbers are we talking about here?

        • http://www.peter-ould.net Peter Ould

          CA are in the low hundreds. TFT are into four figures.

          • robert

            That’s not what the CA website says!

          • http://www.peter-ould.net Peter Ould

            “over 1000″ refers to all the different international groups. not just England. England is a few hundred.

          • robert

            Who mentioned England? And you’re more obviously au fait with the CA membership list than me!

          • Dave Warnock

            So neither very large.
            Sadly in this “debate” any moderate or loving traditional conservative voices always seem to be drowned by the angry hate filled ones.

  • Dave Warnock

    6. “whilst I don’t agree with same sex marriage, I fully support same sex individuals”

    This appears to be an impossible contradiction to me, unless you are the one who gets to provide their own definition of whether other people feel fully supported. Those wanting a same sex marriage are not going to ever feel fully supported by anything else.

  • Lisa

    I find it interesting that you have felt the need to express all of YOUR feelings on someone else’s journey. How narcissistic as a people are we, that we feel that we need to tell everyone how we feel about someone else’s story with an air of authority. And the casting out demons thing- if it was in a vineyard church- probably was happening. At around the time she referenced, a crazy vineyard bible study I was at tried to label me with a spirit of mockery and rebellion, and imply I had demons attached to me. You can feel angry all you want that someone wants to confront the damage that was done in the name of Jesus through those “exorcism”prayer circles. But I think it is important that we recognize and repair the damage all the demon hunting did in some vineyard circles in the 90s. It left me with quite a scar- and made me really scared to share anything with anyone. I said I was stressed about school and wanted prayer—and ended up hearing I had demons on me? Those were some ridiculous times in the Vineyard, and in my opinion they may owe some people some apologies.

    • http://deanroberts.net/ Dean Aaron Roberts

      Well, actually, it’s my blog, and therefore my opinions on subject matters – other things, events, people. And I’m allowed that opinion. And you weren’t forced to visit this blog ;) I’m sorry, but I really don’t take truck with people condemning the fact that someone has an opinion on someone else’s journey as you say – a journey that has been made to be public freely, sold to the press, aired on television and complimented by a series of blog posts and promotion. That gives plenty of permission, I believe to respond with my opinions on the issue. As an aside, I think it’s downright wrong to blanket a whole movement of churches or denominations for something you may have experienced in one, maybe more than one, church(es) as an individual. We all get hurt by Church, but it doesn’t necessarily give us the right to slander the group, movement or denomination to which they belong. Also, I think you’ll find that I made a concession in the article related to some of the points you raised.

  • Deanna

    She is always saying “who she is”; it’s all about her identity. As a Christian, our identity is suppose to be in Christ. Also, you’ll have a pretty hard time finding God condoning homosexuality in His Word, unless you twist it to fit your viewpoint, which she will do. She is looking at the bible through her sexuality, instead of the looking at her sexuality through the lens of God’s holy word. Ever place that mentions marriage it always talks about husbands and wives. Husbands love your wives as Christ loves the church and wives submit to your husbands as unto The Lord. That should be enough, but people don’t take God at His word today. God hasn’t changed. If she is purposely living an unrepentant lifestyle, I have reason to question if she was ever truly born-again. A lot of kids were raised in the church but have never given their life to Christ. They just know the words and the walk, but not the Man (Christ). Jesus said everyone who says “Lord, Lord” won’t enter heaven. It’s the last days and the great falling away has already started. The wheat will be separated from the chaff/light from the darkness.

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  • Ros

    Thank you for your thoughts. Since it would take more words than would be appropriate for me to respond to them here, I have written my own blog. If you are interested, you can find it here: http://ripplesinthewind.wordpress.com/2014/08/19/take-my-life-and-let-it-be-gay/