More than 1,500 New Yorkers gathered today in Manhattan to mourn the death of a 32 year-old gay man, who was shot down on Friday just blocks away from the historic Stonewall Inn in an apparent act of anti-gay bias.
LGBT Religion News Summary - January 31, 2011
As hundreds of LGBT faith leaders convene in Minneapolis for Creating Change: Practice Spirit, Do Justice, Nicole Garcia of Lutherans Concerned garnered an interview with the Associated Press that was picked up by NPR.
Creating Change participants will be remembering David Kato, a gay Ugandan who was murdered just days after a court victory against “Rolling Stone” newspaper, which had published his picture with a noose next to it. Many people are lifting up the role of some American religious activists who have been fomenting anti-LGBT sentiment for years, and most intensively in recent years. In the midst of this, a Ugandan lesbian was almost deported until a judge in Britain halted the deportation proceedings.
The Archbishop of Canterbury publically condemned the murder, and Anglican Bishops meeting in Ireland urged that anti-LGBT hatred be confronted. About one-third of the bishops did not show up in protest of the acceptance of gay people by The Episcopal Church. In other Episcopal News, the Washington Post reported that a prominent conservative leader was fired from the historic Truro Church in northern Virginia for surfing pornographic websites. In Fort Worth, an Episcopalian congregation that broke away in protest of the ordination of gay priests received a summary judgment by a state district court to surrender their church property.
In the Evangelical world, some wonder if scripture should be debated. A Religion New Service wire article asked if there was a “Great Gay Awakening” as Jay Bakker, straight ally and the son of famed Jim and Tammy Faye, garnered several interviews, including an appearance on the Today Show for his new book, Fall to Grace. In an interview, Ted Haggard said that if he were 21 years old he would call himself bisexual. Deborah Haffner connected the dots between Ted Haggard, Joel Osteen calling gay people sinners and the violence that continues around the world.
Lutherans grieved the loss of Bishop Paul Egertson, a staunch straight ally to LGBT people for many years. And, the adjustments to the ELCA’s inclusive policies continue. In Fargo, N.D., some former members of congregations that left the ELCA are re-establishing themselves with the help of a United Methodist congregation.
In other news, Presbyterians are voting presbytery by presbytery across the country on whether or not to ordain partnered gay clergy. Bishop Harry Jackson was turned away by the court in his effort to overturn marriage equality in Washington, D.C. Belmont University in Nashville announced that it would include sexual orientation in their anti-discrimination policy, and the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston announced their own school plan to not discriminate against the children of gay and lesbian couples.