Church and gay/bi guys

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 16, 2011 4:06 AM GMT
    I attend church regularly lately. I'm gay / bisexual. I always sort of feel out of place since I'm basically a sinner in my church's eyes. Anyone else feel this way or have insight? I feel great going to church otherwise and especially since the 2 pastors at my church here in Long Beach, CA were former jocks so they are easy on the eyes. The main pastorr is a big muscular german, masculine, ex jock from Iowa. I find myself admiring them both from afar. They both lift weights and are about 50 years old but look great except for the grey hair. But this church is one of the best around. I notice there aren't any gay guys that I know of. I normally attend by myself or sometimes with a straight buddy. But he has some addition problems he is working through.
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    Sep 16, 2011 11:03 AM GMT
    solosport said:

    I'm gay / bisexual. I always sort of feel out of place since I'm basically a sinner in my church's eyes.

    Sin is sin. Everyone in church or out of church is a sinner. Heterosexuals don't have the market on God. "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."

    God bless you for attending church and pursuing your spiritual quest!
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    Sep 16, 2011 11:15 AM GMT
    Interesting post...

    People have different reasons for going to church.

    - they were raised in church and it connects them to their roots
    - it is habit
    - they want spiritual guidance
    - they want a sense of community
    - they are seeking God

    What I have found in my Christian walk is that I often get some of my needs filled by one church, but usually not all of them. I attend a church regularly, but I am not a member. I am actually a member of another church that has a strong connection to my family. The church I attend is where I go to come closer to God, to understand our personal relationship better, to learn the Bible. In that church is where I learned and accepted that God made me gay, he knew what he was doing, he loves me and accepts me through faith in Christ and when I die I will be with him. At the other church, the story of my life and the lives of my children unfolds and I have a sense of history.

    So go to this church that satisfies a part of your need, but also look for other churches that may fulfill you spiritually and remove this feeling of shame or guilt that you have. "There is no condemnation in Christ"

    Good luck... if you need help shoot me a message!

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    Sep 16, 2011 11:44 AM GMT
    I know exactly what you mean by feeling out of place. I've been going to church since I was a kid (with my family, and still do), and have seen God work in my life, in the most astounding of ways.

    I try my best to live as righteously as I can, but it's very difficult with that nagging feeling that I'm not accepted by my brothers and sisters in Christ (let alone my family).

    The constant condemnation that I receive (not directly, I'm still not publicly out) for being gay is always discomforting. No matter how much I believe God made me this way, the disapproval and fear of being outed (has happened once already, NOT NICE) makes me feel terrible.

    That said, I believe that church should be attended as a family unit (as much as possible). Visiting other churches can create unwanted conflict in one's family, so I think it's best that I don't leave the church we attend (we already just moved, due to stupid politics in the previous one). It's difficult to find a conservative church these days, with hymns and welcoming hearts.

    We are ALL sinners, but somehow the church makes me feel like the worst of them; that being gay can't be forgiven.

    But like I said, I've witnessed God acting in my life so much that I can't help but feel His love.

    Still, though, it's a constant debate that I have with myself. And it never gets easier.

    I don't think this post is of much help, but it took a lot for me to write it, and I hope it at least lets you know that you aren't alone!
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    Sep 16, 2011 11:47 AM GMT
    nicerough saidI know exactly what you mean by feeling out of place. I've been going to church since I was a kid (with my family, and still do), and have seen God work in my life, in the most astounding of ways.

    I try my best to live as righteously as I can, but it's very difficult with that nagging feeling that I'm not accepted by my brothers and sisters in Christ (let alone my family).

    The constant condemnation that I receive (not directly, I'm still not publicly out) for being gay is always discomforting. No matter how much I believe God made me this way, the disapproval and fear of being outed (has happened once already, NOT NICE) makes me feel terrible.

    That said, I believe that church should be attended as a family unit (as much as possible). Visiting other churches can create unwanted conflict in one's family, so I think it's best that I don't leave the church we attend (we already just moved, due to stupid politics in the previous one). It's difficult to find a conservative church these days, with hymns and welcoming hearts.

    We are ALL sinners, but somehow the church makes me feel like the worst of them; that being gay can't be forgiven.

    But like I said, I've witnessed God acting in my life so much that I can't help but feel His love.

    Still, though, it's a constant debate that I have with myself. And it never gets easier.

    I don't think this post is of much help, but it took a lot for me to write it, and I hope it at least lets you know that you aren't alone!


    So you go to your church that you feel unwelcome at and scared at because you believe that you should for your family? I can respect that, I really can, but why cant you also join a Bible study in your town that is accepting of LGBT men and women of your faith? Why can't you find somewhere that will answer your questions and comfort you about God's love for you. And dude, he really, really does. You dont have to reject your family to accept God... you can do both.
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    Sep 16, 2011 11:57 AM GMT
    The church I attend is quite gay friendly and has a support group for gay Christians. The church also works with a local Christian group that helps to facilitate dialogue between the gay community and the religious community. They do great work and go a long way towards helping the religious community accept LGBTI people.

    I've never felt that it was wrong to be gay, even though I come from a relatively conservative Christian background. I suppose I consider myself more spiritual than religious and I place my faith in God, not the church.
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:01 PM GMT
    Finding the right church can make all the difference. Some churches have a spirit of love and compassion. You will know when you have found it. The Episcopal church is very gay friendly.
  • TheIStrat

    Posts: 777

    Sep 16, 2011 12:12 PM GMT
    Why bother going somewhere you aren't fully welcome. I'm sure there is a place where you can go that is fully accepting.
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:18 PM GMT
    Like vincent7 said, heterosexuals DO NOT have the corner on God! But, some heterosexuals will disagree with you since so many of them believe they have God totally figured out! icon_rolleyes.gif

    Anyway, consider checking out churches that belong to denominations that are very gay-friendly. I recommend the Episcopal, United Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, United Church of Christ, and American Baptist churches among others. I am a recently confirmed United Methodist and the church I am a member of has women serving as the minister and youth and families minister, as well as GLBT-individuals serving in many ways, along with homeless people, single adults, older couples, and youth. In addition, our minister has performed God-ordained marriage ceremonies in the homes of a few GLBT couples.

    Another GREAT resources is http://www.gaychurch.org/, which has a spectacular listing of gay-friendly churches.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Sep 16, 2011 12:24 PM GMT
    I was born in and attend an Episcopal church in Wichita. I'm proud of my
    confirmation in the church as it is very accepting of women (both priests are women) and gays. If I want to take my partner to church with me, he's welcome and he'll be introduced as my partner in the middle of the santuary and will be absolutely accepted in the eyes of the church. That's the way it has to be for me.
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:36 PM GMT
    Columbusite777 saidLike vincent7 said, heterosexuals DO NOT have the corner on God! But, some heterosexuals will disagree with you since so many of them believe they have God totally figured out! icon_rolleyes.gif

    Anyway, consider checking out churches that belong to denominations that are very gay-friendly. I recommend the Episcopal, United Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran, United Church of Christ, and American Baptist churches among others. I am a recently confirmed United Methodist and the church I am a member of has women serving as the minister and youth and families minister, as well as GLBT-individuals serving in many ways, along with homeless people, single adults, older couples, and youth. In addition, our minister has performed God-ordained marriage ceremonies in the homes of a few GLBT couples.

    Another GREAT resources is http://www.gaychurch.org/, which has a spectacular listing of gay-friendly churches.


    Columbus, I really enjoy attending my United Methodist Church and find the worship very moving. My church offers traditional Methodist worship and Anglican worship. I attend the Anglican service and I always leave the service feeling connected, uplifted, and whole. Isn't that how it's supposed to be?

    I hear this all the time from family members, "The Methodist church is more liberal than my church." What the hell does that mean? Is this a code phrase for being gay friendly? It's too bad that so many churches have become political rather than the worship of God.
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:39 PM GMT
    Alpha_Muscle said
    So you go to your church that you feel unwelcome at and scared at because you believe that you should for your family? I can respect that, I really can, but why cant you also join a Bible study in your town that is accepting of LGBT men and women of your faith? Why can't you find somewhere that will answer your questions and comfort you about God's love for you. And dude, he really, really does. You dont have to reject your family to accept God... you can do both.

    Ah, I see I left out something. My country doesn't support homosexuality (a rarely enforced rule, but it's still illegal), so there aren't any gay friendly churches (I think there's ONE, but I don't like their overall values and worship style).

    I do feel welcome at my church, and I doubt that I'd be chased away due to being gay (if I ever came out). However, they won't accept that part of me, and will probably try to convince me to go through counseling etc. It'd be attention I'd rather not want, and an attempt at a task that's impossible.

    There are other factors as well, but there would be too much to explain here, especially publicly.

    Thanks for your words, though!
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:47 PM GMT
    nicerough saidAlpha_Muscle said
    So you go to your church that you feel unwelcome at and scared at because you believe that you should for your family? I can respect that, I really can, but why cant you also join a Bible study in your town that is accepting of LGBT men and women of your faith? Why can't you find somewhere that will answer your questions and comfort you about God's love for you. And dude, he really, really does. You dont have to reject your family to accept God... you can do both.

    Ah, I see I left out something. My country doesn't support homosexuality (a rarely enforced rule, but it's still illegal), so there aren't any gay friendly churches (I think there's ONE, but I don't like their overall values and worship style).

    I do feel welcome at my church, and I doubt that I'd be chased away due to being gay (if I ever came out). However, they won't accept that part of me, and will probably try to convince me to go through counseling etc. It'd be attention I'd rather not want, and an attempt at a task that's impossible.

    There are other factors as well, but there would be too much to explain here, especially publicly.

    Thanks for your words, though!


    Wow.... that is a challenge...

    I am praying for you, dude and if there is ever anything I can do to help you, give me a shout out.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 16, 2011 12:58 PM GMT
    This is why I don't have a religion and why I don't go to church.
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    Sep 16, 2011 1:09 PM GMT
    How they act about gays depends on the church.

    The church I grew up at is in a very upper middle class conservative suburb of Georgia. But our pastor has a very distinct view of everyone else's "sin". He has the attitude of no judgement and just come as you are. He doesn't want the church to be about judging others, he wants it to be about God and that is it.

    We actually have a guy that is pretty clearly gay and out at least to the worship staff and they let him sing and be up on stage at church. They say nothing about him being gay.
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    Sep 16, 2011 1:11 PM GMT
    Alpha_Muscle saidWow.... that is a challenge...

    I am praying for you, dude and if there is ever anything I can do to help you, give me a shout out.

    Yes, it is icon_confused.gif

    But thanks for your concern and prayers! It's very much appreciated! And pray for solosport too. It's his thread after all!
  • Delivis

    Posts: 2332

    Sep 16, 2011 2:41 PM GMT
    1. I dont think the physique or attractiveness of your pastors should really be a factor of which church you attend.

    2. There are more progressive churches that have no issues with sexual bigotry (or fewer issues at least).

    3. If you really like this church and do not want to move, why not raise this as an issue? I'm sure you could do some good by standing up and saying you love the group but feel unfairly alienated when they do whatever form of gay bashing that they do.
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    Sep 16, 2011 3:01 PM GMT
    I use to go to church on a regularly basis until I turned 21. My grandparents where brought up in the old small town church going ways and wanted me and my sister to attend every sunday. When I turned 21 I had noticed that everyone in my age group left that church and I was the only one left and I would go out drinking saturday night and made sure I was there by 8am sunday morning. I finally stopped going due to the fact that I was there with people 35 on up. I believe in God but I don't go to church anymore more so the fact that the old people there are the type that would frown upon homosexuality. My grandparents know that I'm gay but don't talk about it and treat my partner as if he where just a friend. I believe that God makes us who we are and if he makes some men gay I think it is his way of saying that the worlds population is way out of control with all these breeders having babies and a lot end up for adoption or in foster care. I also think it is his way of castration of the males without acctually doing it so we could adopt those kids that don't have families.
  • neosyllogy

    Posts: 1714

    Sep 16, 2011 3:07 PM GMT
    Do you think you're a sinner or that homosexuality is a sin?
    If not (and maybe you do, I don't know), but if not then what does that say about the moral authority of your church or religion? What exactly do you get out of church? Is it giving you what you think it is?
  • neosyllogy

    Posts: 1714

    Sep 16, 2011 3:11 PM GMT
    Draconis said... if he makes some men gay I think it is his way of saying that the worlds population is way out of control with all these breeders having babies and a lot end up for adoption or in foster care. I also think it is his way of castration of the males without acctually doing it so we could adopt those kids that don't have families.

    Shouldn't he be aiming the gay ray at countries with more overpopulation issues then? e.g. many poorer african nations... (More direct methods of intervention aside.)
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    Sep 16, 2011 3:17 PM GMT
    solosport saidI attend church regularly lately. I'm gay / bisexual. I always sort of feel out of place since I'm basically a sinner in my church's eyes. Anyone else feel this way or have insight? I feel great going to church otherwise and especially since the 2 pastors at my church here in Long Beach, CA were former jocks so they are easy on the eyes. The main pastorr is a big muscular german, masculine, ex jock from Iowa. I find myself admiring them both from afar. They both lift weights and are about 50 years old but look great except for the grey hair. But this church is one of the best around. I notice there aren't any gay guys that I know of. I normally attend by myself or sometimes with a straight buddy. But he has some addition problems he is working through.




    I know how you feel. It's a shame you're not in Ft. Lauderdale. I found a wonderful gay church here called Church of the Holy SpiritSong. I wish there were more like it out there.
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    Sep 16, 2011 4:47 PM GMT
    great post..

    I also attend church on a regular basis and have talked to some really close people about being gay and being a Christian.

    It's such a hard issue to talk and to discuss because there are NO bridges. Both sides stand on EXTREME ends
    -Gay being that "we" have totally written off the church and hate the church for judging people.
    -Christians being of course that homosexuality is an "abomination" blah blah blah.

    The truth is that we can find some ground in being Christian and being gay. Humans have the tendency to have sexual temptations period (gay or straight) one cannot be more immoral than the other.

    I think this whole issue depends on the values of who you are as a Christian regardless of who you love. I believe the same principles apply to gays as non gays if you consider yourself Christian. (sex outside of marriage, etc.)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 16, 2011 4:50 PM GMT
    You must have very few real world problems if you choose to burden yourself with all this shit for absolutely no reason.
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    Sep 16, 2011 5:02 PM GMT
    Religion should not be manipulated to support bigotry. If it does, then that aspect of a church's teachings are unethical, and not especially religious. But that does not mean that a lot of other wonderful teachings and religious experiences cannot be embraced.
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2605

    Sep 16, 2011 7:14 PM GMT
    Interesting post,solosport.I come at this from a more complicated position of being both gay and an atheist!
    I was raised by Christian parents in a very conservative and religious county,but rejected much of Christianity as a late teenager because I was gay,etc.However,I find as I get older I`m drawn back to the church of my childhood,the Church of England,especially the major festivals.At the moment it`s riven by controversy and debate about women Bishops and openly gay priests(a significant minority of all the Church`s priests are gay-just mostly in the closet).It`s record on being accepting to gays and lesbians is mixed,shall we say?
    I think having a friend who`s gay,agnostic and who`s a regular churchgoer may be influencing me towards this direction.The feeling he gets of community is something I long for and he`s well accepted by all the congregation.But I feel uncomfortable about going to church when I`m gay and possibly worse,don`t even believe in God! I`m a hypocrite at least! One of my fears is that if I became a regular goer and was open,I would never be allowed to forget about my sexuality and end up feeling judged and singled out for censure;even thought the members were kind and loving.
    Yet attending here,in a centuries old, little village church at Christmas, is the most wonderful experience and time of beauty,spirituality,peace,and community.
    I take your point about the priests.Ours is a big,fit muscle bear of a guy from Fort Worth,Texas! His accent alone draws me to him!
    Sorry if this was a bit of a ramble,but my own thoughts and feelings are very mixed and unsettled on this subject.Ten years ago I would not even consider returning to church.