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After gay marriage successes, activists look to build on new faith outreach techniques
Faith-based activists in Minnesota helped defeat a proposed gay marriage ban there this month.
November 30th, 2012
06:00 AM ET

After gay marriage successes, activists look to build on new faith outreach techniques

By Dan Merica, CNN

(CNN) – It may not sound very powerful, but gay rights activist Debra Peevey said that a two-inch green button played a major role in convincing voters to legalize gay marriage this month in her home state of Washington.

“Another Person of Faith Approves R. 74,” said the button, which refers to the ballot initiative that wound up legalizing gay marriage in Washington.

As faith director for the statewide pro-gay marriage campaign, Washington United for Marriage, Peevey and her team distributed 5,000 of the buttons. They were conversation starters, she said, ways of letting people know they could relate to one another on the intimate level of religion. And that being religious didn’t meant you had to oppose gay marriage.

“We had people clamoring for the buttons,” Peevey said. “People of faith all over the state wore them. It amplified that perspective that people of faith do, in fact, support marriage equality.”

This year, voters in Washington State were joined by those in Maryland, Maine and Minnesota in handing big victories to the gay rights movement. In the first three states, voters legalized gay marriage. In Minnesota, they rejected a measure that would have banned same-sex marriage.

After watching dozens of states adopt gay marriage bans in recent years, gay rights activists hope this month’s victories mark a national turning point. And to help push other states to follow suit, they are holding up efforts like Peevey’s as a blueprint for how to successfully incorporate faith into future gay rights campaigns.

Some same-sex marriage proponents think their fight may move to Colorado, Illinois, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Oregon or some combination of those states. Wherever the effort goes, gay rights activists say, faith will be a part of the mix.

“Faith became part of the solution and not just the problem in all four states” where gay marriage was on the ballot this year, said Sharon Groves, director of the religion and faith program at the Human Rights Campaign, a gay rights group. “We will never do a campaign moving forward where engaging people of faith will not be central part of that work.”

‘Be who you are, not something you are not’

For Grant Stevensen, a Lutheran pastor in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the faith director for the campaign opposing a gay marriage ban in the state, engaging faith communities depended on framing the debate the right way.

In past gay rights ballot fights, Stevensen said, the same-sex marriage movement put “a big emphasis on civil rights language and connection to the civil rights movement.” But the messaging didn’t work, he said, with many people rejecting the idea of a link between civil rights for minorities and marriage rights for gays.

Instead, Stevensen and his team used words like “love,” “marriage” and “commitment,” in their messaging about opposing a gay marriage ban, words that he said strike at the heart of Christian beliefs about marriage. “Our goal for the whole campaign was to emphasize those themes and talk specifically about gay people,” he said, “as opposed to making this another civil rights movement.”

Similar campaigns in other states took different approaches.

For instance in Maryland, gay rights activists emphasized outreach to African-American churches and played up civil rights arguments.

In Maine and Washington State, enormous effort went into mobilizing lay Catholics, even if their hierarchy actively opposed the gay marriage campaigns. Stevensen’s Minnesota campaign, meanwhile, targeted the state’s many Lutherans.

“Be who you are, not something you are not,” the pastor said, encouraging other gay rights activists to combat the stereotype that all Christians “are opposed to gay people.”

The right conversation

In past ballot fights, which resulted in gay marriage bans in more than 30 states, forces opposed to same-sex marriage had dominated the faith conversation.

A faithful same-sex marriage supporter was seen as an outlier.

When Ross Murray, director of religion, faith and values at the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), was asked by his bosses to be one of the lead liaisons between the four state-based gay campaigns and the national gay rights organization, he knew more emphasis than ever was going to be put on religion.

Murray advised the campaigns to ask “people to vote the value that they have been taught” and “make sure that you can reach within all religious groups and get those who have passion and have them reach their friends, neighbors and co-congregants.”

That’s what Stevens tried to do in Minnesota: “We were going to either own this conversation about faith and if we can’t own it, no one is going to own it.”

Stevensen and his eight-person faith staff trained 2,500 "conversationalists," religious people who were taught how to have conversations about gay marriage with other people of faith. They were instructed to discuss same-sex marriage in terms of their religious beliefs. The campaign offered similar training sessions to more than 500 clergy.

The two-hour-long training sessions also focused on people telling their own faith stories. If someone had once been opposed to same-sex marriage because of their religious beliefs, they were encouraged to talk about that, too.

More than anything, said Stevensen, the conversationalists were encouraged to listen.

“People have their reasons to think what they do. [We taught how to] draw people out and make sure they are heard,” he said. “All of us like to be listened to.”

The Human Rights Campaign’s Groves said she was impressed by the lengths these campaigns went to reach deep into faith communities. As a veteran of the same-sex marriage fight, Graves was there when the movement struggled with this sort of outreach.

“It makes sense that we would have made some mistakes around that,” Groves said. “LGBT people have been harmed by the church.”

Perhaps the biggest mistake was around the gay marriage ban in California, known as Proposition 8.

Prop 8 mistakes

Debra Peevey was faith-based field organizer in Southern California during the fight against the Proposition 8 ballot initiative in 2008.

One reason she and her fellow gay rights activists lost that campaign was the way the religious conversation played out. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Mormons, along with the Roman Catholic Church actively campaigned for Prop 8. That framed the fight as one between secularists and believers.

“There was a resistance in engaging faith community,” Groves said. “We kind of let the religious right define the space for us and that was a real learning that we got from that.”

While religious organizations were pouring in money and manpower, said GLAAD’s Murray, anti-Prop. 8 opponents were apprehensive in reaching out to religious allies and ineffective at building enthusiasm from sympathetic religious communities and leaders.

Both Murray and Groves describe the post-Prop 8 reflection period as a “turning point” for the gay-rights community that gave rise to this year’s intense faith-based organizing.

Now, Peevey said, there’s no going back: “I can’t imagine that we will ever have a LGBT campaign where faith was not a part of the team.”

Moving forward

At pro-same-sex marriage organizations like GLAAD, Murray said conversations are turning to where the next gay marriage fights will happen.

“It is really hard to tell where this is going to come up again,” said Murray, adding that the next attempts to block or legalize gay marriage may happen legislatively in some states, as opposed to via ballot initiative.

He said gay rights groups want to tap into the Lutheran networks in Colorado, Illinois and Oregon early, to ensure that their LGBT outreach is well established by the time any ballot initiative or legislative efforts formally get under way.

By the time that happens, the gay rights community has learned, it may already be too late to frame the faith conversation around gay marriage.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Politics • Same-sex marriage • Sexuality • United States

soundoff (1,674 Responses)
  1. Vader

    The Bible is epically wrong.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • Massman

      Agreed. No book in history has caused as much death and suffering.

      November 30, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
  2. WOW

    Gay marriage is biblically wrong.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • sipsen

      So true. But at least polygamy is biblically approved.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • mama k

      Thank goodness our country isn't based on Gullible's Travels.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • sam stone

      Perhaps, but the bible is not our secular law.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      g.ay marriage is biblically wrong - true.
      the bible is a terrible guide for good living - true.
      the bible says to kill g.ays, non-virgin brides, disobedient children and anyone working the weekend. anyone actually following the bible would be among the worst serial killers/mass murders ever to have lived. the bible supports slavery throughout. god drowned babies in his great flood. BABIES.
      the bible is disgusting and should be used to line the bottom of bird cages.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • Darw1n

      Then it must be right.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
    • Massman

      James – Let's say you keep your interpretation of your bible to yourself and I will keep my state granted right to marry to myself. Seems fair. (You must realize that marriage existed long before Jesus came along..religion came late to that party!)

      November 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      humanly wrong, but borrowed from hindu filthy animals by hindu ignorant s followers of hindu filthy evolution in hindrance to truth absolute GOD, rock of American foundation.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      If a hindu ID thief likes to be spitted on his face so bad for hinduism, crookedness, take vale off of your hindu ugly face to be spitted on, hindu, crook.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • Marc

      Ahh, the bible....or as I like to call it....the birthplace of fiction.

      November 30, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • iRex

      Divorce is also Biblically wrong, and unlike being gay, Jesus actually mentions it.
      Eating Shellfish is also an abomination, so if you ever eaten at Reb Lobster you are the same as a gay before the eyes of God.

      November 30, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
  3. mike hunt

    If your a relegions person, you should be against gay marrage. If your an American, you should be for it. America is about freedom, freedom for all, even if they dont subscribe to your relegion or beliefs.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      American freedom? What a resolute lie such a thought is! What about "freedom of drug trading?" What about "freedom of the s e x trades?" What about the unregulated "freedoms of the gambling trades?"

      November 30, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • mama k

      You're pathetic, Lion. If you're going to try to bring reality into the concept of freedom, then we'll have to bring some reality into the concept of religion. I don't think you'll want to go there.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • sam stone

      liony: those should be freedoms, too.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      American consti tution is based on truth absolute GOD, any one in hinduism, denial of truth absolute GOD is not an American but a hindu, traitor to America, hindu gay ism, in love with hind ism, is hinduism, violation of fundamentals of America, to be treated as such.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
  4. lionlylamb

    God, whether he is or isn’t will ever be the celestial beings’ raiment. God forbade no one their only will; to be constrained by leavened breadths and widening clusters within fragmented minds of tribunal conclaves. We biologic clusters of cellular cosmologies do laminate the celestial shorelines of outward cosmological sanctimonies; either as an inerrancy faultless or as being a blunder of inclemency found full of faults. Ones will never become another’s willingness way. We are physically and psychically alone and never shall be a will of togetherness bearing.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      [God] puts an apple tree in the middle of [the Garden of Eden] and says, do what you like guys, oh, but don't eat the apple. Surprise surprise, they eat it and he leaps out from behind a bush shouting "Gotcha." It wouldn't have made any difference if they hadn't eaten it...Because if you're dealing with somebody who has the sort of mentality which likes leaving hats on the pavement with bricks under them you know perfectly well they won't give up. They'll get you in the end.
      – Douglas Adams

      free will? do as i say or be tortured for eternity in hell - but the choice is yours. lol..

      November 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  5. Apple Bush

    Hi Akira! Happy Friday!

    November 30, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  6. Just the Facts

    Please don't try to forbid marriage amongst those our Lord God created gay...

    1 Timothy 4:1-5
    Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart
    from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings
    of demons, through the insincerity of liars whose consciences are
    seared, who forbid marriage and require abstinence from foods that God
    created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know
    the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be
    rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the
    word of God and prayer.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      sadly, the bible orders it's followers to murder g.ays:

      Leviticus 20:13
      13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      hinduism, absurdity from book of hindu Mithra ism, racist savior ism, handy work of hindu Jew's, criminal self centered to justify hinduism, criminality of hindu filthy gay ism, love of hind ism. way of hindus, absurd s to hind, fool humanity.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      Daristan is an open gutter of the world, I am Satan of Daristan, spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
    • Wow1234

      @Booty

      Then, surely you must follow all of Leviticus? No tatoos, agree that women are worth 3/5 as much as men, and those with disabilities should be second class citizens...

      November 30, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  7. Questions

    I have been wondering how many Christians will persecute Jesus at the second coming. He was put to death by his fellow Jewish brothers ( no offense intended but that is the way of Christianity). But how many Christians will not be willing to open there hearts and minds to Jesus new message and will instead find a cross to hag him on. Maybe the main message of God/Jesus/Holy Spirit is to listen to what your heart tells you is right, to love your fellow man (because none of us are perfect and never will be, and be open to change (cause Jesus has already brought great change and wh are we to say he won't again). Please do not turn God/Jesus/Holy Spirit into a weapon for hate and fear.

    November 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Questions

      Sorry for spelling errors. Hard to type on ipad

      November 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      when jesus comes back, he is going to open his father's seven seals and murder 2/3 of the humans on earth - if he comes back, run for your lives.

      Matthew 10:34
      Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • doughnuts

      He was killed by Romans, not Jews.

      November 30, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  8. lionlylamb

    We, as being but biology buildings do labor together and in equal measures find struggle with God and all his generations, his family members and servants and other Godly brethren inside our body-like buildings of cosmological wonders! 1Corinthians 3:9 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building!"

    We were literally there in the very beginning moments of Creation itself. We live throughout timeliness upon the inner cosmos within a scale so minutely small that the immensity of things could be thought of as being but upon the head of a pin! We were and still are mostly made of Nothingness! Nothingness puts vast distances between what we know of as being neutrons, electrons and protons!

    Ask any science major and they would tell you matter of factually that nothing makes up more space within the atomic cosmos then does the atoms themselves! The Seas of Nothingness reach from the innermost to the outermost ranges of cosmological aberrations! Our bodies themselves are cosmologically ordained cellular cosmologies of biogenetic wonders and marvels!

    The history of multifaceted cosmological expansionism within celestial symmetries comes from the terrestrial complacencies of planetary regularities and solarized objectivism wherever the abundance of inner cosmologies coalesces to form stars, planets and moons among many other fragmented structures within the spatial confines of a universally formed Cosmos.

    Lives, upon the celestial shorelines of the terrestrially compliant are biologic cellular cosmological constants, and were ever formed and are continually forming seemingly forever as well placed living conglomerations in naturalisms arcades of wondrous cavalcades marching in steps of melancholy tributes to God upon the most high Cosmos of universalism’s formidable formation on highest of grounds.

    If one diatribes fetal modernism, one is locked within a promiscuous choice: either make acceptable a proponent’s rationalism or declare the other has a ranking significance, but only if artistic leverage is interchangeable with the narratively orientated and therefore an unattainable languishing of a higher order. Many quatrain narratives concerning rationalism do so exist. Therefore, the subject “God” does endure to be a relative diagnostic embolism.

    Any number of discourses concerning sub-textual conceptualism exists. Thus, the premise of deconstructive rationalism suggests that society, paradoxically, has intrinsic meaning. Lycanthropic obscurity properties propose that unobstructed reality is fundamentally a legal fiction. Thusly, I do concur “the premise of the cultural paradigm of expression holds that art is capable of social comment, but only if the cultural paradigm of narrative is invalid; if that is not the case, truth is used to reinforce the status quo.”

    God, whether he is or isn’t will ever be the celestial beings’ raiment. God forbade no one their only will; to be constrained by leavened breadths and widening clusters of fragmented minds of tribunal conclaves.

    November 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      i suggest you take a basic science course at your local community college. as a matter of fact, just read the introduction in any high school science text book and you will triple your science knowledge. and stop using polysyllabic words when you obviously don't understand their meanings.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Mr. Lamb, that was succinct and mezmorizing as usual.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Bootyfunk,

      You, likened as many other infidels of the written and even spoken wordage to find faults that are of their own descriptive conclaves of vernacular soundings.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
  9. Bootyfunk

    hehe, sounds like we're on the same side. smooches.

    November 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      that was for apple. sorry, meant to reply below, not a new post.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Smack

      November 30, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
  10. Apple Bush

    @Topher [my hand is getting tired of scrolling, moving up]

    Topher, so using your logic, if YOU wanted to be gay, you could be. You just choose not to, correct?

    Therefore, if someone is gay, it is because they choose to be hated, despised, discriminated against and persecuted. Good call. I wonder why they wouldn’t just choose to be straight and avoid the hassle?

    Are you gay Topher? Be honest now. And if you are not gay, why?

    Additionally, what experience do you have with the gay community? What do you know about this subject personally that would qualify you discuss it with me or anyone else?

    November 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      A.B. Seer,

      Afternoon to you, your bushy apple tart!

      Hetero and gays are leveraged against each others stances based upon their tribunal complacencies. Being 'bi' or doing both s e x e s is where either hetero of gay is found faulty in their audacious clemencies. Agreed?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Agreed? I don't even know what you said you crazy old fuck. Did you WORD installed yet?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple Bush

      Sorry, dude. I just saw you moved the post. :)

      "Topher, so using your logic, if YOU wanted to be gay, you could be. You just choose not to, correct?"

      Not sure I understand the question. I'm not gay. But let's just say I had that proclivity to be attracted to other men. If I turn away from that lifestyle and live my life for God (repenting and trusting in Him) then I can be saved by His grace.

      "Therefore, if someone is gay, it is because they choose to be hated, despised, discriminated against and persecuted. Good call. I wonder why they wouldn’t just choose to be straight and avoid the hassle?"

      I won't get into a debate on whether their feelings are a choice or not. It seems that both can be true depending on the person. I have no doubt it isn't a choice. But acting on those feelings IS a choice.

      "Additionally, what experience do you have with the gay community? What do you know about this subject personally that would qualify you discuss it with me or anyone else?"

      Very little experience with the gay community. I know what the Bible says and so I know that no matter what a person's sin is, he or she can be forgiven if they repent.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Topher, your last post tells me everything I need to know about you. You know...absolutely.....nothing. Nothing in your bible will change the facts around homosexuality. You can accept it or live in your fantasy world. You are not a person to be taken seriously and I am done humoring you. Don’t be late for work.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Akira

      Apple, I'm cracking up again; you have that affect on me.
      And, hello.

      Lionly:
      Simple question, requiring just a yes or no answer; do you believe gays should be allowed to marry?

      We'll get into reasoning later.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple

      Are you saying it's a bad thing God will forgive them?

      November 30, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • sam stone

      Topher: Perhaps the translated, edited iron age hearsay does not represent the feelings of god.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      You're ridiculous. DO you want to know the kind of image you've been projecting in your posts for the past few months?

      November 30, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • doughnuts

      Topher said, "Not sure I understand the question. I'm not gay. But let's just say I had that proclivity to be attracted to other men. If I turn away from that lifestyle and live my life for God (repenting and trusting in Him) then I can be saved by His grace."

      Maybe you would be saved (whatever that means).

      You'd also still be gay.

      November 30, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  11. Sam Yaza

    Shinto accepts gay marriage as well as a many other pagan faiths, so why do Christians impede my religious rights?

    see its not rely about religious freedoms its about your bigotry

    November 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      unfortunately, their rule book says to murder g.ay people. they don't seem to have an issue skipping the part that says to kill all non-virgin brides... that'd be about 98.5% of this country's women that the bible says are w.hores deserving of death. hmmm... wonder how g.ay the country would be with a population ratio of 10000 men to every 1 woman? lol.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
    • Akira

      And what if that one woman was a lesbian?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      mail order brides would be all the rage - till they found out their new bride wasn't a virgin and had to kill her.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things,

    November 30, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      actions cause change; prayer wastes valuable time.

      unclasp your hands. get up off your knees. go outside. think for yourself. put those hands to work helping your brothers and sisters of the world.

      congratulations - you're now a better person.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • HeavenSense

      Hi Prayerbot.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      spit on face of people say muslim prayers, they make them terrorists.

      Spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • and as always

      footybunk is wrong

      November 30, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      spit on face of FootyBunk, he is ashamed to be Bootyfunk.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      ^^ my fanbase ^^

      November 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

      Prayer didnt work for the mother who was holdign her 2 children and the flood waters ripped them from her hands and the drowned. Maybe Jesus was there lookign into their eyes as they took their last breathe...terrified and dying

      November 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      if there is a god, he is the very definition of FAIL.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book can help you:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...

      November 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • snopes confirms

      and as always is false

      November 30, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  13. hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

    Muslim= Hate All
    Muslim= Kill All
    Muslim= Destroy Everything

    Spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
  14. Reasonably

    If you don't like ga y se x, don't do it. Let your gods sort it out – not your job to judge, or so your book says, right?

    November 30, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Topher

      Uhh ... no.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Reasonably, Topher has to save you. Don't you see?

      November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      unfortunately, the bible actually does say to put g.ays to death.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • Topher

      Hey, Apple.

      Technically, I can't save anyone.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      then you and god have something in common, Topher.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Hey T, well you do want to force the homosexuals to turn their backs on the way god made them and pretend to be straight so they can be saved....right?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple

      I want ALL people to turn away from their sins, whether they are gay or straight.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple

      Forcing them would not help them. It would have to be a willing repentence.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      no such thing as sin. sin is just a device by the church to control the masses.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
    • pervert alert

      If all qu eers were imprisoned in solitary confinement or executed the world would be spared the spread of AIDS. Qu eers the people that gave AIDS to the world

      November 30, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      and if you were imprisoned, the idiocy rate would take a significant hit.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      T, as usual you avoided my question. Granted it was a "loaded" question but please answer specific to expecting gays and lesbians to lie about how they were born and pretending to be straight. That IS what you think they should do right?

      Follow up question, if god knows everything, then he will know they are gay right? So he made them gay, then they have to lie about it to be saved even though he knows thy are lying. Even they he made them gay in the first place..etc.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • and as always

      pottyfunk is wrong

      November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple Bush

      No. I'm not asking anyone to lie (because that would be another sin.) What I am asking them to do is choose God over their self. For instance, as a straight man, I have a proclivity to have se.xual thoughts about women who walk by. That's a sin, too. I choose to turn from that, make myself think of something else, when I start to do that. We are all sinners and no matter what that sin is (lying, premarital se.x, por.nography, lu.sting, stealing, etc. ...) we must repent for it ... apologize and turn away from it. Because God is so much more important than that thing.

      Yes, God knows if they are gay. But that doesn't mean it's OK. It's like I said above. Just because we like that thing (whatever it is) doesn't mean we should act on it. Again, I'm not asking anyone to lie about it. That won't help you because God would know you lied.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Gay does not exist, ho mo se xuality is a filthy perversion of life and a murderous sin. To call ho mo se xuality gay is to give the vilest practice ever imagined too nice a name. Call the filthy sin what it is – qu eer. Qu eers the people who gave AIDS to the world

      November 30, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      T, if I may try to appeal to your common sense if you have any.

      1. Why did god make them gay if he does not approve of homosexuality?

      2. "What I am asking them to do is choose God over their self." = Asking them to lie.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      topher, sadly, you are in a cult. christianity is a cult. all religions are cults.

      christianity has done untold damage to the average s.ex life. the bible constantly says s.ex and lust are evil and you should feel terrible about having a lusty thought for a leggy redhead that walks by. these are natural thoughts and not in any way 'sinful'. this is one of the great crimes of the church - making s.ex into something evil. the psychological damage the church has reaped on people is absolutely disgusting.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      Here's a hint, people who aren't of your religion don't give a shit what your holy book says and what people like you say about your god. Here's a bonus, people who aren't of your religion don't take kindly to its completely immoral, dehumanizing doctrine of hate.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
    • Topher

      Apple Bush

      "T, if I may try to appeal to your common sense if you have any."

      Ouch.

      "1. Why did god make them gay if he does not approve of hom.ose.xuality?"

      You'd have to ask Him. But if you have that proclivity, you make the choice to act on that feeling. Even they can be forgiven their sins, just like I or you can be for yours, no matter what that is.

      "2. "What I am asking them to do is choose God over their self." = Asking them to lie."

      No. Just asking them to turn away from the sin and seek God instead of the pleasures of the flesh. Just because I reject a lot of the things I WANT doesn't mean I'm lying. I just choose the good over the bad.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:33 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Topher

      Oh should I also mention the Christian denominations that accept gays and gay marriage. They don't take kindly on other denominations forcing them to adhere to a different doctrine.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  15. hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

    I hate Hindus, Jews, Christians, Gays, Lesbians, Bi-S.exuasl, Trans Genders, animals.

    Spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      I will never visit the Middle East. It must be a sea of spit. Every time I see Jews or Muslims they are spitting. Spitting when they talk, spitting when they fight, spitting on the infidels, spitting in their faces...YUK!

      November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      when they spit, perhaps they're thinking of ignorant bigots, like yourself.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Maybe BF, but it is still gross. Lighten up man I am just busting hindu's balls.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      hint: find a way to do that without calling everyone int he middle east disgusting

      November 30, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      hint: Mind your beez was booty.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      i'll mind yours too, when needed.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • Akira

      Spitting is disgusting no matter where one lives.
      If it is prevalent in one area more than another, I will avoid that area.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      what are your thoughts on farting and burping?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      BF, ok ok I said to much. Jeez. :)

      Burping and Farting are fine as long as I do it. But nobody else.

      And I do find spitting disgusting!

      November 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      @apple
      hehe, sounds like we're on the same side. smooches.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
  16. yolanda

    @ Bootyfunk...I thought Leviticus 20:13 said "If a man lies with another man, they should be stoned." That's why Washington and Colorado legalized marajuana....now everybody can be happy, no?

    November 30, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      i'm with you, yolanda. if some of this christian fundies would pass the peace pipe, all of this would be over...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  17. hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

    spit on my face. I am ashamed to be muslim, I am from gutter country called Daristan. Spit on face of my country people, Daristanis too.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
  18. Snake Oil Salesman

    The cultural norms in the Bible have changed a lot. Marriage, the treatment of children, slavery, food laws. There is no reason this one can't change either. People are obsessed with se'x.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      yup. thankfully, christians don't follow the bible today. the bible says to kill g.ays, disobedient children, non-virgin brides and anyone working the weekend. anyone actually following the bible would be among the worst serial killer/mass murderers the world has ever known.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Homophobes are far more obsessed with s</bex, straight and ga</by, than decent people.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      nothing wrong with a healthy obsession with s.ex. that's not the issue. if you're not at least somewhat obsessed with s.ex, you're doing something wrong...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Snake Oil Salesman

      There is a NIH study that shows ho'mophobes are actually latent gays.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
  19. Akira

    Bad Zut! Bad, bad Zut!
    There's a pengin on my telly.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
  20. hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

    hindu gay sim, filthy hind loving ism is hind, violation of consti tution of USA, based on truth absolute GOD, not on hindu Judaism, filthy secular ism, denial of truth absolute GOD, hindu gay's, filthy hind lovers, hind, sunk in hinduism illegality of hindu gay ism, deserve not to be called American, but tried for hinduism, crime against America.

    Word hindu is based on Latin word hindered, negative, Hun, great, Han, to be in greatness, hin, negative to both of them, hindu, a noun in negativity, hinduism, way of negativity.
    To learn source of hindu filth of gay ism, please visit limitisthetruth.com.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      looks like some nutter got over the wall again...
      someone get the white coat.
      "now come along peacefully and we'll give you some OJ and cookies when we get back to the facility."

      November 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • hindu Gay ism = filthy hind loving ism, WAY OF hINDU FILTHY ANIMALS.

      Spit on my face. My soul is stuck in muslim body, I am a dirty muslim, spit on my face. Spit on face of muslims.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.