Shuck and Jive

Opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent the views of the congregation I joyfully serve. But my congregation loves me!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

I Don't Get It

I just don't get this. Those in my denomination who oppose same sex couples from getting married claim that "radicals" and "revisionists" and otherwise nasty, god-hating, depraved bozos like me (who think the church ought to embrace gay couples who want to be married) are busting up the body of Christ by our advocacy. Whatever.

They come up with all kinds of theological jargon, texts from the Bible, and goofball theories of doom if clergy officiate at a wedding they don't think is proper. Why are some people so intent on depriving others of happiness?

It appears that some people base their religion on how much misery they can cause for others. The god they believe in and grovel toward must be a real sourpuss. If someone wants to get gay-married it is really nobody else's business. They aren't hurting anyone. It makes them happy. You would think the church would want to bring a little joy into people's lives.

WTF?

17 comments:

  1. Their God holds the community responsible for the 'sins' of individuals (and has been known to have very bad aim when punishing the community). Since same-sex relations are a 'sin' because of their interpretation of Scriptures and tradition, it is their duty to suppress it by all means possible.

    As an atheist, I tend to look at the fruits of monogamous same-sex relationships and they generally seem good.

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  2. John,

    The Rt. Rev. Barbara Harris (the first female ordained a bishop in the Anglican churches) preached a sermon last night at an Integrity gathering and she addressed the topic of marriage at the end of her sermon. The whole thing was excellent, but what you said made me think of her.

    You can listen to the sermon by going to the following website and clicking on the 'on demand' button for videos and then click on the picture of her preaching at the Integrity Eucharist (I think it is the third video on the top). It was an excellent sermon.

    Peace,
    A.

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  3. Forgot to give you the website--my bad!

    http://gchub.episcopalchurch.org/

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  4. The prefer everybody wear hair shirts and soak in brine. Misery loves company.

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  5. Look at it this way:

    There was a time they would have set you on fire.

    Now they just say God is going to set you on fire.

    May not seem like much, but it is progress. Really.

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  6. Maybe it's because of fear that gay people can't commit to a relationship?
    Here is a sampling from our little inner circle here in Billings:

    Tony and Mike = 20 years
    Pat and Randy = 27 years
    Robin and Melissa = 25 years
    Cody and Steven = 17 years
    Ted and Alan = 15 years
    Dixie and Toni = 18 years
    Kim and Diane = 28 years

    Maybe it's because gay people don't really contribute much to society?

    Tony = Media Artist/ Owner hair salon / Community Theatre Director
    Mike = Nurse / Assistant manager of neighborhood grocery store
    Pat and Randy: Own and manage the largest nightclub in Billings
    Robin = Owns and manages her own gourmet pet food supply company
    Melissa = Financial Analyst
    Cody = Computer programmer
    Steven = Health Care Administrator
    Ted and Alan = Own and run their own ranch
    Dixie = Supervisor for UPS
    Toni = Network Administrator
    Kim = Drives the big rigs for UPS
    Diane = Elementary School Teacher

    Maybe it's because gay people don't give of their time?

    Tony and Mike: Design and sell Native American jewelry. The profits are donated to the Elders of the Crow Tribe for special needs at the AWE KUALAWAACHE Care Center in Crow MT and Heritage Acres in Hardin MT.
    Pat and Randy: Offer their nightclub, free of charge, for Breast Cancer, Diabetes, AIDS/HIV, etc. fundraisers.
    Robin and Melissa = Donate free pet food to "Help for Homeless Pets."
    Cody and Steven: Rebuild computers for the Boys and Girls Club of Billings
    Ted and Alan: Donate beef and pork to the battered Women's Shelter of Billings
    Volunteer for Yellowstone Boys Ranch.
    Dixie and Toni = Volunteer for Meals on Wheels for the Council on Aging.
    Kim and Diane = Purchase books for under-privileged children.

    It saddens us to think that church does not want people like these in their fellowship or allow their unions to be blessed. Would these folks be an attribute or a disgrace? Indeed, WTF?

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  7. Tony and Mike -

    Thanks for taking the time to post that list here. What a great argument against the prejudices of the narrow minds and circles.

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  8. Hi Snad !

    We're so pleased that you got the point of our post and taking the time to say so.
    Sometime we feel like we may be too "preachy" but until things change...

    Have a great day :)

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  9. "You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do."


    Anne Lamott

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  10. Erp:

    "Since same-sex relations are a 'sin' because of their interpretation of Scriptures and tradition, it is their duty to suppress it by all means possible."

    An important lesson here. Freedom of conscience is also part of this same religious tradition which means that just because I may personally view another's act as a sin, it is not my duty to suppress it. Suppression of the 'sins' of others is not a staple of our tradition even as many think it is.

    Andy--thanks for the link. I will check it out!

    Dr. M--that is for sure, yet this violent animosity against gays is deeper than fear of change.

    Snad--"Let us all now be miserable for the Lord. Amen."

    Jodie--Hmmm...could be, yet if they could I am sure they would like to be God's matchstick.

    Tony & Mike--thank you for that! Nothing like stories of real people to counter ignorance.

    Snad--I echo.

    Jay--I do like Annie Lamott and that quote!

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  11. Thanks for the correction; though it was my understanding that the Presbyterians when in power earlier in history tended to be fairly strict on all at least as far as actions (and with certain other exceptions like Servetus).

    I also suspect that these people don't intend to cause misery so why are they doing it?

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  12. Hey Erp,

    I didn't mean it as a correction. You are right that folks see it as their duty to suppress "sins." Certainly much of our Presbyterian tradition has done that.

    I don't want to them off the hook by blaming the tradition which also affirms freedom of conscience for their prejudice.

    I do think some people want to cause misery for those who are different, are perceived as a threat, etc.

    Then there is psychology. We strike out at that part of ourselves we don't like.

    I think religion can an excuse to rationalize our prejudice.

    I don't know really if religion causes bad behavior or is an excuse for bad behavior!

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  13. Probably not one motive either within individuals or within the group. I fear though that blaming it _mostly_ on those desiring misery for others is incorrect (though some do) and will turn away those who are wavering in their opposition and who aren't interested in misery for misery's sake.

    As for whether religion causes bad behavior or is an excuse for bad behavior, I think the answer is both. For those raised in a religion to accept x, y, and z, religion causes bad behavior. For those who create justifications for bad behavior using whatever their religion considers legitimate sources for doctrine, religion is an excuse.

    Now I find that the legitimate sources that most religions use are manmade and often freeze certain cultural norms, a few hundred (or thousand) years later those norms are no longer acceptable (e.g., slavery, woman's subordination, etc) and some fancy footwork is often needed to make it acceptable for those following the religion to reject the old norms.

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  14. "Those in my denomination who oppose same sex couples from getting married claim that "radicals" and "revisionists" and otherwise nasty, god-hating, depraved bozos like me (who think the church ought to embrace gay couples who want to be married) are busting up the body of Christ by our advocacy..."

    My favorite bit of rhetoric from the busybodies, fusspots, tattletales and scolds is "sexual anarchy."

    Two words: Mark Sanford.

    Two more: David Vitter

    Two more: Larry Craig

    Two more: Ted Haggard.

    Two more: Bill Clinton

    Two more: Newt Gingrich

    Two more: John McCain

    All supposedly heterosexual. I could go on of course, but I think the point is made. (I didn't include the 60% of married men who confess to having committed some sort of adultery during their marriages, nor the 50% of marriages that end in divorce.)

    Whenever the tattletales, fusspots, busybodies, and scolds start in talking about "sexual anarchy", I just assume they're speaking from experience.

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  15. **Whenever the tattletales, fusspots, busybodies, and scolds start in talking about "sexual anarchy", I just assume they're speaking from experience.**

    Yup. Nice list. Could almost be a prayer litany! : )

    Erp, good thoughts of course. Obviously, I am exaggerating when I think people actually intend as a purpose to make others' miserable. It sure looks like it, though, especially when a concept of God is so disconnected with what is good.

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  16. "I am exaggerating when I think people actually intend as a purpose to make others' miserable."

    Though I don't think I've ever run into any, I suppose it is possible that some people do not intend to make others' lives miserable. But honestly I think one cannot unintentionally be a busybody. I think the natural inclination of most normal, mature adults is to MYOB, and it takes real effort to stick one's nose where it doesn't belong. At least, if they were raised right, that is.

    So is there really any practical difference between someone who intentionally goes out of their way to be a tattletale, fusspot, busybody, and scold, and someone who doesn't do so intentionally?

    A difference that makes no difference is no difference.

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