Today is May 16th 2011. I wanted to note the date of this entry because I think it will be interesting to look back on it five, maybe ten years down the road. This is due to the fact that this week I have thought more about homosexuality and its place in modern American society and in my religion than I ever have before. This past week there were two "events" that I think reflect just exactly how far we have come and how far we still have to go when it comes to the issue of accepting homosexuals and allowing them to be afforded the same comforts and opportunities as heterosexuals.
Last week the Presbyterian Church U.S.A voted to allow changes to wording in the definition of who could be ordained as a pastor in the denomination (we are SO political). What it boils down to is that homosexuals would finally be given the chance to preach the word of the Lord in the Presbyterian church. I believe my particular congregation was more than accepting of this, and in fact had been advocating for it for quite some time. Personally, I was glad to hear the news and felt that the church had began to right a long time wrong.
Unfortunately many congregations are not as open to the new interpretation, citing "biblical proof" that homosexuality is a sin. Even if this were true (I don't believe it is), aren't all ministers (and everyone else) sinners? Isn't that the entire point of Christ giving his life for us? For those that see every word of the Bible as God's exact word, I remind you of one of the boldest and most popular verses in the Bible:
"for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God"
Romans 3:23 NIV
With this in mind I ask those who do not believe homosexuals should not be ministers: why is what you believe to be their sin worse than anyone else's? Do you think that Jesus, who dined with prostitutes, tax collectors and lepers, would agree with your decision to not allow homosexuals to preach his word? How would He, who said the most important commandments were loving God and your neighbor, feel about a church that doesn't even allow gay Christians to worship within it? To me these answers are obvious, which leads me to my next topic...
This is the part of the blog where I get off of my pedestal and take the proverbial "long look in the mirror". Why is it so easy for me to understand that homosexuals should be allowed to preach and marry but so hard for me to practice treating gay people with respect and decency all the time...even when they "aren't looking"? It wasn't more than a year or two ago that I called one of my friends (who isn't gay) "gay boy" and another (also not gay) "man time" anytime I wanted a good laugh. Besides the fact that those "nicknames" aren't funny or creative anyway and that I should have a better sense of humor, what is most important is that what I was saying is offensive. I, Eric Proctor, Obama voter, couldn't think of anything "funnier" to say than childish homosexuality mockery which assigns a negative connotation to being gay because I was trying to make fun of my friends. Laura has been telling me that I shouldn't say things like that since she met me and like always, I should have listened. However, I, like many other American's, can't really grasp a concept unless Grant Hill explains it...(please read "A Gay Week (Part 2 of 2)")