Thursday, November 10, 2005


... at least that is how I read this piece.

Allow me to set the stage. A group which has chosen to live an "alternative lifestyle" has had their feelings hurt by a right wing religious zealot (my words not theirs).
Sally Sheklow, a Religious Response Network activist, said it can be very empowering for people to hear from religious scholars who don't view the Bible as condemning them on the basis of sexual orientation.

"There are people who've felt cast out of their faith tradition because of hateful interpretations," said Sheklow, a lesbian and Jew. "It's important to address things in biblical terms, because those are the weapons used against us."
In other words if your square peg doesn't fit the round hole provide to you, get a bigger hammer. I would like to be able to read the Bible without feeling condemned by it ... problem is I'm a sinner and stand condemned without any help from Scripture.
"All perspectives are welcome, but we're making no bones about our human rights advocacy bent," she said.
It's clear they don't have a biblical "bent."
The clergy-led panel discussions are in response to an incident last May in which someone scrawled hateful words - and a citation from Leviticus - on a banner at the offices of the Queer Straight Alliance, an LCC student group ....
Critics of the views of this blogger will not believe this but, I find such behavior as useless and offensive as anonymous letter writers (which is nothing more than written gossip).
In seeking an appropriate response, [Susan] Matthews[, the college's Multicultural Center director,] said she met several times over the summer with members of the Religious Response Network, a local interfaith group that originally formed in response to anti-gay rights measures in Oregon.

The best response, participants decided, would be a series of free forums in which local clergy and others explore different perspectives on how the Bible should be interpreted in regard to human rights and homosexuality.

At the first forum next week, for example, two ministers and a rabbi will explore such questions as the Bible's social context, whether it was "God-written or God-inspired," and arguments for and against literal interpretation.
I personlly don't have any problem dialoging with homosexuals or their supporters as long as they can control themselves and avoid shouting and name calling. My experience has been that far too many of their activists cannot control themselves.
Jim Garcia, LCC's diversity coordinator, said the forums are a legitimate avenue for educational outreach. Last spring's act of vandalism, he said, "is not the vision of diversity we want to promote here."
I would be willing to wager if the person who did the vandelism came forward and wanted to join the forum their "vision of diversity" would come to a screeching halt.
"People are using the Bible to dehumanize LGBTQ folks," said Garcia, referring to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer individuals. "The purpose of the forums is to bring an inclusive vision of what the Bible is stating."
Gee, I thought the purpose of the forums was to gain an understanding of Scripture that wasn't so condemning. Doesn't it seem strange someone who is open to all and any views of the Bible makes such a categorically closed statement as this?

I was taught in seminary, rightly so I believe, that proper interpretation of Scripture doesn't allow the reader to bring to it the reader's personal biases and prejudices nor his hope's concerning his own circumstances.

; ; ;

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