An Openly Gay Bishop, and a Church’s Message

Letter to the Editor | New York Times

To the Editor:

Re “Episcopalians Confirm a Second Gay Bishop” (news article, March 18):

Serving with an organization that works to end the harm caused by religion-based prejudice and hostility toward gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans, I commend the Episcopal Church for its courageous move to approve the election of the church’s second openly gay bishop, the Rev. Mary D. Glasspool.

Your article stated that the move may “increase the tension with fellow Anglican churches around the world that do not approve of homosexuality.” That is an extraordinarily sad commentary considering the message — you can’t serve God if you’re gay.

As an evangelical Christian, I once held the attitude that heterosexuality was the only sexual orientation sanctioned by God. But I have since met hundreds of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people of all faiths who in their hearts and minds find great joy and peace in their spirituality. Their spiritual experience is as real as mine — and perhaps more profound considering how some people work so hard to turn them away.

For the church as a community to deny any person the spiritual experience that the church professes is the most precious gift is its greatest moral failure of our day.

Brent Childers
Executive Director, Faith in America
Hudson, N.C., March 19, 2010

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