My Faith: How I learned to stop 'praying away the gay'
Don Lemon with his grandmother on his third birthday.
May 22nd, 2011
01:00 AM ET

My Faith: How I learned to stop 'praying away the gay'

Editor's Note: Don Lemon is a CNN anchor and author of Transparent, a memoir .

By Don Lemon, CNN

"School day, time to get up, sleepy head. School day."

Although she's been gone since 1998, my grandmother's words ring in my head just about every morning of my life. That's how MaMe, as I called her, got me out of bed and off to my Catholic school when I was growing up and in her care.

But before I shuffled my way to the bathroom to begin my morning routine, I had to hit the floor on my knees to pray, just as I had the night before.

It was usually The Lord's Prayer ("Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name...") followed by asking God to watch and guide me through my day until I returned to the safety of my home that evening.

But MaMe (pronounced MAH-me) didn't know that at a very early age her favorite grandson had begun to pray, silently, that God would change him from being different, from having crushes on boys, from being more curious about boys than girls.

By age four or five, I was too young to sexualize my infatuations but I knew that everyone else, including my family and friends, would think it was wrong.

Perhaps it was the conversations I overheard from adults around my hometown of Port Allen, Louisiana, who'd mimic gay people, calling them "funny" or "sissy" or "fagots."

Perhaps it was Sunday mornings at our Baptist church, where preachers taught that liking someone of the same sex was a direct and swift path to hell. And that if that person would just turn to the Lord and confess his sin, then God would change him back into the person He wanted him to be - a person who only had crushes on the opposite sex.

All of which meant that, from a very early age, I began to think I was dirty and that I was going to hell. Can you imagine what that feels like for a kid who was just learning to read and perform basic arithmetic? It was awful.

And talk about guilt - I was a Baptist attending Catholic school!

I prayed the silent prayer for God to change me every chance I got until I started attending college in New York. That's when common sense began to take hold and I realized that no amount of prayer would change me into something that wasn't natural to me.

With my religious upbringing, I'd had the opportunity to study religious doctrine. But I learned from different perspectives, from Catholic Mass on Fridays to Baptist services on Sundays to vacation Bible school in the summer to Bible study with a Jehovah's Witness as a teenager.

As I got older I began to realize that all these people and institutions interpreted the Bible somewhat differently. I had a sort of epiphany: the Bible was about the lessons you learned, not about the events or words.

When I became old enough, intelligent enough and logical enough to discern the difference between metaphor and reality, everything changed. I realized that Jonah living in the belly of a whale was a parable written in the same vein as Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. saying that he had "been to the mountaintop."

Neither Jonah nor King had actually been to those places. They were metaphors for lessons for those of us who cared to absorb them.

So many of us, especially in the black community and in churches, tend to think that religious teachings happened word for word as they were written in Scripture. I think that's naïve, even dangerous.

That type of thinking - or non-thinking - keeps many religious people enslaved to beliefs that they haven't truly stepped back from and examined.

That type of thinking causes people who are otherwise good to shun and ostracize young gay people.

It causes people to want to control and change people who aren't like them. And who wants to be like someone else?

Imagine if we had allowed Christian doctrines and teachings that supported slavery, segregation and the subjugation of women to pervade our society all the way up until the current moment. What kind of world would that be?

Instead, we got on our knees, just as I did as a little boy, and prayed that slavery, segregation and the subjugation of women would end. In the United States, at least, those prayers have largely been realized.

I'm no longer the member of any church but I do believe in a higher power.

It's time for us, especially black people, to stop trying to pray the gay away and to get on our knees and start praying that the discrimination of gay people ends.

What we're doing to our young gay people now is child abuse. It's plain old bigotry and hatred. And if African-Americans don't know what that feels like in America, I don't know who does.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Don Lemon.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (4,733 Responses)
  1. wisdomVSknowledge

    Read the Old Testament story of David and Jonathan, it was without a doubt a gay relationship, even Jonathan's father said so and threw a spear at David hoping to kill him. Obviously blaming David for making his son gay. Yet, David became king and later married in order to have heirs but he never forgot Jonathan. Do you know what the name David means.... "like unto God".

    I don't need religion to tell me anything, the Holy Spirit speaks loud and clear to each of us. The problem is religious people won't listen. They hear what their high and mighty minister says, not what Gopd is trying to tell them. There is indeed a different between religion and faith. I'll take faith any day and let the man made religions go to the hell that created them. You religious idiots can say "Hello' to Joan of Arc when you get there!

    June 17, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • Ann

      You should be ashamed of yourself misquoting and representing the Bible the way you are. If you correctly read through their relationship you will clearly see their roles. King David in need of encouragement so God sent him a man who would prophetically encourage him, that was Nathan. No where in there does it even state or show that they were lovers. You are really sick.

      June 19, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • Jen Sharpley

      Bravo, very well said.

      June 20, 2011 at 9:41 am |
    • Jen Sharpley

      to wisdomvsknowledge, Not to Ann.

      June 20, 2011 at 9:42 am |
  2. StewartIII

    NewsBusters| Don Lemon, CNN's Gay-vangelist: Opines That Literal Bible Reading is 'Naive' and 'Dangerous'

    June 17, 2011 at 1:38 am |
  3. santosaint

    I am a Catholic and when going through puberty I was never attracted to girls the way I was to boys. I didn't want to be gay. My mind wanted to accept me being gay but my heart didn't want to accept it. Which do you listen to when your in the 7th grade? I prayed and I prayed to God that he take this away, not because of religion and not because I felt it was wrong. I just didn't want to be gay, I wanted a wife and to have children but when you are born gay you can't make yourself change and God already created you. So, I became angry with God because I didn't understand His purpose for me, I was being selfish. This is when I realized that religion and faith are not the same. Religion is something you believe in with others but Faith is something personal and individual. So which did I listen to? My heart. Everyone tries to make being gay a sin, and I just will say this...Jesus told us very clearly this is not a decision that is made by man because it's a judgement and we are not God. Only God and Jesus can tell you about your sin. For this you must search in your heart for what is right and wrong in God's eyes. He will tell you. It's not mans place to tell you that you are sinning because everyone is a sinner, and Jesus already told us not to throw the first stone. Maybe you forgot that story.

    I will leave you with these questions for your heart...what was the original sin (and if you think it was a piece of fruit, you must pray for wisdom), and are you partaking of that sin, gay or straight?

    June 16, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
    • Angie France

      Sorry but it IS sin but there is no degree of sin. The Bible says there is no one good, no not one. That being said, trying to dress up your sin and trying to make it appear as normal might work for most people that have been brainwashed by society and the media will not wash in God's eyes. It just depends where your absolute truth comes from. You can all do what you want but end the end you choose your self and make yourself the judge. It will be for a season. At the end of your life you will ultimately be judged for it. Not by what you believe but by God's word. Sin never changes. What was sin in time past is still sin today. But Jesus went to the cross to pay for sin. People will not go to hell today because they sinned or didn't. They fail to trust that Jesus paid the sin debt for the whole world on the cross. And you better take it literally!

      June 17, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
    • Artist

      I fail to see how the bible is even relevent or has authority????? Can someone explain?

      June 17, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
    • Spirituosen Kromer

      This is a made up article desigen for one perpose, to make the bible look bad and distort people veiw of it, along with people veiw of right and wrong. Along with this comment, these things are pre-scripted. I bet you cnn will reveiw my commont and remove it. Funny. But, regards to the article, what are we to do then in todays world, make up in our own minds what ever we feel should be the truth, and have no real truth, but just whatever is true to you?

      June 17, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
    • BondServant

      The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked who can know it – Jeremiah 17:9 Please stop following your heart it will always lead you astray. If you diligently seek the Lord you will find Him. Our human nature causes us to create a god in our own minds who is not the true God of scripture. I pray that the Lord will reveal Himself to you. May the Lord bless you & keep you.

      June 18, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
    • Oh yeah

      "Everyone tries to make being gay a sin,"

      No, not everyone there are churches, pastors, priests, nun and rabbi's who have stated that being gay is not a sin. They have looked at the science and realize God created you this way. Being gay is not a choice, it can't be voluntarily changed and it's not a mental illness. The thing you have to recognized is so many have to twist it to hold onto their prejudice and hate don't fall into their trap, they are controlled by Satan. Being gay is not a sin, be who God made you to be, fill your heart with love in your relationship with God. God is working through you to show the Christian community they have been deceived by Satan.

      June 20, 2011 at 11:00 am |
    • Ann

      Saintosaint......you're kind of incorrect. Jesus gave us teachers, pastors, prophets, etc to help guide the Body of Christ. If you read the New Testament you will find that Apostle Paul often corrected people who were doing wrong, in the Book of Galatians specifically. Paul rebuked them a lot, amongst others. If you don't care about someone and their soul then you will be quiet or tell them what feels good. In the last days Paul explained that men would give over to their own desires, and that people woud tell others what they want to hear. God is clear with relations between same gender, man with man is perverse. Don't be fooled, it's in there. It's your choice how and what you want to do with scripture, to apply it or just take what suits your life and feels good. When my sister told our dad who was a pastor that she was gay, he simply notified her of what scripture says and he told her that he wanted to let her know and that was the only time he'd ever speak to her about it scripture wise. Since then, our family won't talk to her about scripture. She's no longer in that lifestyle, she chose on her own to get out of it. But we loved her and supported her in anyway, if she'd cry because she broke up with her girlfriend, we'd sympathize, no matter gay/straight, a broken heart is a broken heart. She's beautiful to me inside/out, I love her very very much. But as a believer if someone asks you about what scripture says then you tell them one time so they are informed and that's it. Don't talk about it anymore. It's up to that person what to do with it. But I believe this subject is in the Bible for a reason, perhaps God knew that it'd be an area in this world that would come up often. Thanks for your time.

      June 22, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
  4. Nick

    Very well written. I too found myself in a place of honest and real prayer to "change" me. Funny how I heard God so clearly, so many other times, but not when I thought that I was made wrong. God answered my prayers finally when he refused to grant my wish to be straight. It is a hard lesson to learn, but once you realize that you are exactly how you are supposed to be, it is such a wonderful experience. God doesn't want you to hate yourself, he just wants you to be a good person. And I am, as much as I can be. Gay and all.

    June 16, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Mister Jones

      Have ANY of your prayers ever come true? I didn't think so. Quit talking to imaginary people in the sky and look inside yourself for a solution.

      June 16, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  5. Ann

    I'm sorry Mr. Lemon about the torment you experienced inwardly and outwardly while growing up. I'm sure the battle wasn't fun in having those struggles or thoughts. As a Christian myself and having a sister and aunt who are gay, I can understand and have gotten some insight. You hear a lot of the religious ones who find it better to judge than to show compassion-which we are nothing without. I will never speak out against anything gay unless it's infringing upon my personal freedom or choice. I will not do this because I feel it is not the way to do things and because of my family. I would hate of them to think that they could not find a friend or compassion in me. I think being gay is a struggle like any other struggle, being fearful, being a gossiper, alcohol, eating too much, smoking, drugs, swearing, pre-marrital relationships, adultery, etc, etc. I think if it were something "natural" then there wouldn't be such a battle as I have seen family/friends endure. It's a struggle because what you are hearing about God makes you feel whole and good but your feelings kind of have you stuck and unable to move forward or walk freely in what you hear. There's always this thing that pops up. Anyone who has had a struggle knows what it's like. I don't believe that Jesus makes you or I feel guilty when we go to Him about how we feel or struggle with, rather He embraces us. He is love. I am certain that you know scripture and told have to be told by me or anyone else what God has to say about relationships between the same gender. You even asked God to change you for years and yet no change. I believe it's a choice that we make to do what pleases God, sometimes we do what pleases Him and other times we utterly fail. But we repent, get back up and stay in relationship with Him. Repentance to me is turning away from what you feel you did that displeased God but even if you do, it is difficult to fight off that mental battle the next time the same thought or temptation presents itself. I just hope that what you heard growing up Mr. Lemon hasn't skewed your image of the loving Father that God really is. He is a loving daddy. Perhaps you've disagreed with me in some of the things I've mentioned or views but either way, my only desire, rather I feel God's only desire for you, is not to turn away from Him but to continue a relationship with Him. I know quite a few people who once lived that same lifestyle and have completely overcome that battle. They have peace. I wish I could tell you how they did it, other than through my observations with family and friends that they made choices that were different that eventually ended or killed those thoughts or struggle. I totally agree that discrimmination should not be happening to the gay community, they are people and should be treated with love and respect. I also don't believe in praying the gay away. Just like some of my family and friends, it has been a process of transformation. It is not something that disappears overnight. The Christian church as a whole is full of doctrines, and unbiblical teachings. I think more of us should ask ourselves, what would Jesus do? LOL. Thanks for your time Mr. Lemon. Would love if you reply. "Ann".

    June 16, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • Seriously?

      “I think if it were something "natural" then there wouldn't be such a battle as I have seen family/friends endure”

      The battle is that when gay people are around prej-udice people like you they know they are not welcomed. It’s just like when blacks and whites first started dating many found it disgusting and perverted, some still do. The bottom line prejudice and hated is at the foundation. Being gay is not a choice sweetheart so time to do some research and truly understand a topic you obviously are clueless about regardless if you have “family” that is gay. I am sure you preach to them instead of actually listening.

      “I know quite a few people who once lived that same lifestyle and have completely overcome that battle.”

      They were not gay but bis-exual. Do you even truly understand what you are talking about? I think not.

      “what would Jesus do?

      He is doing it by showing today through science and psych-ology research that his Father created them!

      June 16, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • Ann

      To serirously, you don't know who I am nor the people I know. I say the truth of those who I know who were once gay and changed their whole lifestyle around after entering into a relationship with the Lord. I know two men who were gay, both changed. One has kids and is married to a woman, he's never gone back again. Beautiful human being. This shows me it's a struggle like any other but you choose which path you'll take.

      June 19, 2011 at 9:48 am |
    • Seriously?

      "I say the truth of those who I know who were once gay and changed their whole lifestyle around after entering into a relationship with the Lord. I know two men who were gay, both changed."

      Keep showing your clueless on this subject – they weren't gay they were bise-xual.

      June 20, 2011 at 11:02 am |
    • Ann

      So to Seriously, if you are saying they are "bi" then why are they only married to or dating women? That other side has stopped completely. Which prooves my point it is a choice. I've heard everything on this subject from people who are gay and those who are no longer and I have found it's a choice. Which is between them and the Lord. One my best friends was gay and now is married to a man....again, all because of entering into a relationship with the Lord.

      June 20, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Seriously?

      The experts totally disagree with you. Which is why you are clueless on this subject. Human beings cannot choose to be either gay or straight. Psychologists do not consider s-exual orientation to be a conscious choice that can be voluntarily changed.

      June 20, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • Ann

      Well to Seriously, psychologists and doctors are not the end all to all in matters. That's why there are such things as people overcoming addictions, bad habits, and that's why there are even things called miracles!!!! The people I know are living proof of it.

      June 20, 2011 at 7:59 pm |
    • Seriously?

      "hat's why there are such things as people overcoming addictions, bad habits, and that's why there are even things called miracles!!!! T"

      Being gay is not an addiction or bad habit, they are born this way due to hormone levels in the womb, brain chemistry, etc.... You are so blinded and deaf by your personal prejudice to hear the truth.

      June 21, 2011 at 2:01 pm |
  6. outinkansas

    There is little purpose in this kind of arguing if the point is to change someone's mind. I know from my own experience that no amount of praying, getting a ministry degree, getting married, and preaching can change who you are. All that happens when you listen and believeto that bible crap is you waste a lot of years and hurt a lot people because you have been taught you're a mistake and if you want it bad enough you can change. I'm all better now – happiliy my 23rd year with a wonderful man , but the price of getting here was too damn high.

    June 16, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
    • GayAllTheWay

      It made you who you are and now you are married to a wonderful man! Congratulations!

      June 16, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
    • Mary

      You feel that way because you were searching in all the wrong places. I am a Jehovah Witness and we have people from all walks of life who lives has been transform because they have allowed themselves to take in accurate knowledge and allowed Jehovah holy spirit to guide them .(Ephesians 4:20-24)

      June 16, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • GayAllTheWay

      "they have allowed themselves to take in accurate knowledge and allowed Jehovah holy spirit to guide them"

      That's right God guided me to the research that showed I was born this way. That he created me and loves me for who I am regardless of all the prejudice people who have let Satan creep into their hearts by their misguided hate.

      June 16, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  7. Marvin

    It is unfortunate you choose to change the words of God. We have been warned against this by His word, but then maybe you don't believe that either. See this is the problem, if you make any part of His Word untrue, then it all may as well be untrue. Sometimes you may have to get the exact translation whether in Hebrew or Greek, but remember Christianity is an eastern religion and we (Americans) are in a western culture. Don't be fooled or blinded by the enemy (Satan), if God is God, then He can do anything – even place Jonah in the belly of the fish. There has been only one resurrection in the history of the world, God did it for His Son. Sin is sin whether it's lying, killing or some other act described in the B-I-B-L-E, the book for you and me. We each will answer for these acts unless we have been forgiven through repentence and in that case we will have stopped the behavior. Open your heart to HIS word, HE never said it would be easy but He would not forsake you. You do have to surrender to HIS will – it can be a difficult concept. Find a good teacher of the WORD and then study it knowing the Holy Spirit lives in you, God promised that to us and HE can not lie.

    June 16, 2011 at 10:18 am |
    • PraiseJesus

      The Holy Spirit has shown the truth about gays through scientific research that they are God's creation. It's time to put the bible into historical context and recognize that its talking about pagan rituals and idolatry. Many aspects of the bible have been put into historical context which is why women can now speak in church, have jobs, wear clothes of multiple fabrics and stop slavery! Wake up to the fact you are spreading bigotry and lies since you are working for Satan.

      June 16, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
    • larry c. lyons

      So sad how many people believe in one of the oldest heresies in the Christian religion, biblical literalism. As far back as the early fathers of the church they decried it. St. Augustine thoroughly condemned this practice.

      How many lives have been ruined by this heresy is the real tragedy.

      June 16, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
    • dorothy

      Larry – You are so right. Biblical literalism is truly heresy. We don't use that term a lot anymore but it is interestingly an accurate description of those who fail to use the literary and historical knowledge (and even scientific knowledge) that we have to better understand the Bible and put aside the cultural prejudice that has contaminated the interpretation of the Bible. Fortunately the tide is changing. Unfortunately the change has not come swiftly enough to stop the poison spread by some of these misguided "christians" who's misinterpretation of the Bible has spread a message of hate and exclusion. Common sense tells us that many gay people are good to the core......it is unlikely that what God has made so evident in His living creation would be contradicted in His Word.

      June 17, 2011 at 2:04 am |
  8. GodMadeEarth

    There is a psychological principle called the "love map". The theory is, life events shape your 5exual behavior for adulthood. When you're young, the pathways are still forming, but by adulthood they are hardwired. Myself, for example, grew up being fascinated by dark skin. Black folks where very few in my town and I used to get mesmerized by them as a child. As an adult, I find myself being exclusively being attracted to women of color. I certainly know that white women are desirable, but I always choose a woman of color. It definately is hardwired, but I wasn't born this way. I simply indulged the desire until it became habit.
    Being G@y is a choice. It may be a hard choice to reverse in the end....maybe even impossible, who knows...but it's a trained choice.
    A boy at my school was adopted. His mother was a lesbian. I was not suprized to see his facebook page, nearly 10 years later.....in a relationship with Phillip.

    Food for thought...though I'm sure the hate is about to be unleashed.

    June 15, 2011 at 10:41 pm |
    • tb63

      Gosh you're right. I'll become straight. You switch to white women.

      June 16, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • So

      You are using a personal perspective but the science and psychology experts disagree with you. It's not a choice, it can't be voluntarily changed. It has to do with their brains and hormones in the womb that make them hardwired this way. Plus if you did your homework instead of being lazy you would know that studies comparing groups of children raised by ho-mo-s-ex-ual and by heter-ose-xual parents find no developmental differences between the two groups of children in four critical areas: their intelligence, psychological adjustment, social adjustment, and popularity with friends. It is also important to realize that a parent's se-xual orientation does not indicate their children's.

      June 16, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • tb63

      Let me put it this way. If it were a choice I would have been straight. Why would I choose to put up with all of this?

      June 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
  9. Artist

    Gayallthe way!

    You were not really gay, a true gay person does not have a choice. You were bise-xual, not gay. You might have found personal happiness but a true gay person who is in a loving and rewarding relationship with someone of the same s-ex is just as happy if not more. The gay person has constant prejudice toward them while coming out and accepting themselves, once they are fully loving who they are, their love runs deep too. It's a personal journey only those that are truly gay understand. A straight person doesn't have to deal with the prejudice and hatred like we do, especially from so called Christians!


    I was always jealous of bise-xuals, they had better chances of scoring on a Friday night.

    June 15, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • fred

      Artist, the true out front Christians come under all kinds of false attacks. Jesus kept it simple and straight when he basically said each of us has enough problems of our own to focus on that we can't seem to get right. Jesus got it right the rest of us got it wrong more often than not. So we ask for forgiveness a lot and that is why we need Jesus to give us that forgiveness and assurance that He has prepared a way for us. Sometimes we can't help ourselves and pester you because we do beleive that Hell stuff (eternity without God) and really do not want anyone to end up there.

      June 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
  10. Clay

    Faith is something you know NOT to be true.
    Mark Twain

    June 15, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  11. Maricia

    I believe in the bible. I do not believe that God wants me to judge.

    June 15, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
    • Clay

      Its 100% fiction Marcia.
      The way to see by faith is to shut the eyes of reason.
      Ben F.

      June 15, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  12. George

    he is ignorant... NO where in the bible does it say Jonah was in the belly of a whale.... it just says a great fish....

    June 15, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • fred

      Jesus in Matthew 12:40 Told us all we need to know about that big fish. Jesus made it clear that those asking another miracle would not get one because they had already seen many and still ask for more. Nineveh believed Jonah and repented turning to God but these Jews in Jesus day did not believe the miracles or Jesus resurrection and are condemned. It is not about the fish but about those who refuse to believe. No matter what they are shown or told whether from Christ or a man (Jonah) they will not believe.
      If it was important for Jesus to tell us more about the fish he would have. What difference is it if were a whale or the belly of a big boat. Jonah came to free the people of Nineveh from darkness and they heard it.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
    • joe

      Weird, I still think you got his point though.

      June 15, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
    • Clay

      A great fish, ok now I believe.
      jesus was a mythical character not a real person.

      June 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
  13. Some Random dude 117

    ok guys This is getting a Bit Out of Hand I think Everyone Should be Equal !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm a true Christian but I think everyone should Be Free and do as what they like. I don't see the problem here.

    Side note...... Gay dudes look and act weird thats my only issue there. Have a Great Day !

    June 15, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • tb63

      EVERYBODY is weird.

      June 15, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • Viv

      I know lots of straight guys that look and act weird. Just sayin'...
      And I loved your comment! 🙂

      June 15, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • Yeah

      Viv my favorite crazy straight guys are the ones who wear the wigs, paint their faces and their bellies why screaming at other guys throwing around a pig skin ball!

      June 16, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • jjs

      the weirdest poeple in the world are old homeless, drunks who talk to themselves
      and serial killers are pretty weird too

      June 16, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  14. Craig

    All you insane and delusional people that actually believe in an invisible magic man that waved a wand and created you are the ones that are wasting your lives. You only believe the things you do because you were raised to believe them. You were trained to believe them. People raised in India to be Hindu believe with all their hearts in the things they are taught. It's all B-S.

    June 15, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • fred

      Much better to be a person with no faith no beleif no direction. In the end is nothingness so all you have done was for nothing. What a positive life amounting to nothing.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • Craig

      That's a weak justification for religion. Just because the alternative doesn't appeal to you.

      June 15, 2011 at 4:08 pm |
    • fred

      Alternatives have forever been the same. Choose something or nothingness. Choose right or wrong, good or evil. We are both held accountable for what we choose. You will be held accountable for rejecting God I will be held accountable for accepting God. Since only after we die will the accounting take place we are now stuck with deciding what we are accountable for based on what we have been told or in some cases seen. In that day you will stand proud not being accountable and I will bow my head because I knew what was expected of me.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
    • Eric G

      @Fred: Sorry, logic penalty on the play........

      Argument from as-sumption. You have presented no verifiable evidence to support your claim of "accountability when you die". Without evidencial support, your claim is personal wishful thinking. Claims made without verifiable evidencial support can be dismissed just as easily.

      2 minute penalty........

      June 15, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
    • Ester

      Craig and all you that believe as he does, please get yourself a BIBLE and read it, esp. Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13 Get to know Jesus before it's too late.

      June 15, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
    • TheTruth

      Ester pick up a history book and put that scripture into context, it's talking about paganism, not gays as we know and understand it today. Stop taking the scriptures so literally.

      June 15, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • Robin

      Whether you believe in a god or not you should still have respect for those who believe and practice religions instead of hiding behind your computer screen bashing them. Give Respect and you'll get. Usually.

      June 15, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
    • PGC1

      reply to the truth, you don't know the truth if you think those scriptures don't mean exactly what they say. It is literal! You obviously are gay too trying to twist it to the way you want it just the way all gays do! All I can say is have a nice trip!

      June 16, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • Seriously?

      PGC1 – LOL! You're a lazy idiot.

      If Paul wanted to refer to ho-mos-exual behavior, he would have used the word "paideras-ste." That was the standard Greek term at the time for s-exual behavior between males.

      The second term is "ar-senokoitai" in Greek. The exact meaning of this word is lost. It seems to have been a term created by Paul for this verse. "Ar-sen" means "man" in Greek. So there is no way that "ar-senokoitai" could refer to both male and female ho-mos-exuals. It seems that the English translators gave in to the temptation to widen Paul's condemnation to include lesbians as well as gay males.

      Oh not men of God BIAS translators and it's been proven over and over again until recently that what people knew about gays was done by bias researchers too!

      June 16, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  15. Suedehead

    You choose your religion. You don't choose to be gay. That right there is the end of the "issue" to me.

    June 15, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
    • fred

      What does that have to do with this article from Sarah? You choose what you do with your life, you are responsible for what you do with what you were given. Be as gay as you claim you are forced to be by some uncontrollable force within you. It is you not everyone else at fault if there is some fault you are looking for.

      June 15, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
    • GayAllTheWay

      God created gays to show people like you who are claiming to be christian that you have prejudice and hated in your heart. The evidence is in, we are created this way and we are here to stay. Your heart does not have Christ's love in it. Repent now or burn in hell.

      June 15, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  16. crucified

    another reckless misrepressemtation based on emotion....look..Even though my child wanted to go play in the street and He believed God made him with those thoughts so therefore he was designed that way/// I would still get after him to keep him from getting run over by a truck.. I see the greater concequense, the Truck or Hell, over my childs percieved happy thought. If you believe in Hell, and the scriptures without twisting and contorting them, and you truely love God's creation.. you warn people about the Truck even though people like you condemn them with the same bias you say we have. The point is people like you are putting to much stock in this life, and not concerned about the next.. 70 years of percieved unhappiness is nothing compared to the eternality of Hell Rev 21:8 .. I don't ever lose sleep over someone getting their feelings hurt over telling the true, I do however, lose sleep everytime your type misrepresentation sends another soul to Hades.

    June 15, 2011 at 8:01 am |
    • TheTruth

      Look your analogy is really stupid since you refuse to listen to the truth that has been shown about gays. They are born this way, created by God! We were given science as a better way to understand about our world and that science is continuing to show they are born this way. It's been shown that everything we knew about this subject in the past was done by bias and prejudice people – that now includes you. God created gays to show narrow minded Christians like you that you have prejudice in your hearts and will spread lies. You are the one going to hell not the saved gays! Get over yourself!

      June 15, 2011 at 8:09 am |
    • crucified

      science never proved that...psycho-logist said that. get your facts strait. according to science..biologist..gays were not designed to be gay and therefore procreate to expand life.. if you look to science to prove gayness you will fail for physical science requires an extention of existance. gay is wrong and NEVER disigned!

      June 15, 2011 at 8:13 am |
    • TheTruth

      You have to believe that to hold onto your prejudice, keep going, the more you lie the more you will burn in hell.

      June 15, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • dbl1234

      Oh crucified. You can come up with your rediculous analogies, take scriptures from the Bible out of context and try to make yourself feel better for the hatred you're putting out there in this world...but at the end of the day all you have is excuses and a book with words. Love of God and Christ is more than pulling words from the Bible out of context and using that to make yourself feel better about hurting others. It's also about having God and Christ in your HEART. The difference between people like me and you is that I set out each day to be kind to others...to help others in need...and to let people know they are loved. You, on the other hand, set out each day to preach hate and tell others that God hates them for who they are. Its sad really.

      I would not expect you to understand what it's like to be gay...just as gays cannot comprehend what it is like to straight. To get back to my basic argument about people like you driving our youth to commit suicide, though...let's take a look at one of the 10 Commandments..."You shall not kill." When you spread the message that God hates gays to children who truly value the love of God and who have been bullied their whole lives...you push them further into self-hatred and depression...which can coincide with teen suicide. You may not be putting a knife in these children or pulling the trigger...but you are, in effect, driving them to do it to themselves. So if you can lay your head down at night and go to sleep with a clear mind and heart...good for you. But I'd say you should start repenting.

      June 15, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • tb63

      Teenagers everywhere are praying for their lives to not be gay. Trust me, they do not want to be gay. Neither did I. I suffered many years in denial, fighting and praying against it with everything I had. It didn't work and I wouldn't wish that experience on anyone. But I choose now to look on those years as a gift, for they taught me the true meaning of compassion.

      There is only one choice in the matter of being gay: to accept it or deny it. Prayer doesn't make it go away, but it might make denial a more acceptable option for some.

      To accept it is a very difficult but ultimately rewarding process. For those of us that make it through that process, life finally becomes fulfilling and meaningful.

      Of course there will be those telling me I have chosen a life of sin. Whatever. It's my life. I'm not going to spend whatever years I have on this earth – my one shot at life – being miserable living a lie, in denial, in hopes that there is a reward for all of it once it's over. You may believe that is the right way but I don't. So go ahead and tell me I'm going to hell. I can take it. Your condemnation means nothing. You have no authority. My orientation is between God and I. He knows me. You do not.

      But do think about how your condemnation affects all those poor kids out there struggling with their orientation. Life is hard enough. They need to know they're not alone. Like everyone else, they need to know that they are loved and that there is hope for their future. I does get better. I've lived it. I know it.

      One can't love others before they first love themselves. Gay teens can't love themselves until they accept who they truly are. Denial only fosters hurt and self-loathing.

      Nothing I say will make any difference to you superior types who delight in the condemnation of everyone that doesn't believe as you do. You've an answer or scripture for everything and there's no talking to you. You have your golden ticket to your chosen elite in the sky. How nice for you.

      But it's only belief. You believe it. You do not know it.

      By the way, I am not generalizing Christians. I am blessed to know many that are loving, nonjudgemental, positive influences in my life. As are my and my partner's families, our friends both gay and straight, and our neighbors.

      Life is beautiful. Live it the best you can. Gay teens, hang in there and don't lose hope. You have everything to live for.

      June 15, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
  17. Christfollower1965

    No one chooses to be a sinner but we are all just that and born into it. You must choose to get out of sin as I did...yes I was gay but now happily married and more satisfied than ever before in my life! I chose Jesus and He brought me to being a whole person in union with my husband. Do I still sin? Yes as we all will until He comes again but I try to not purposefully and habitually sin! Chose to get out!

    June 14, 2011 at 8:13 pm |
    • PoconoPhil

      How utterly sad the lunatic fringe brainwashed you into thinking the way you were born was a sin. Pathetic. But if you're happy living in denial, more power to you. Just don't cast aspersions on anyone else.

      June 14, 2011 at 8:26 pm |
    • Kelcie

      PoconoPhil, I think ChristFollower1965 is saying that we were all born INTO sin. And the Bible supports that. Pslam 51:5
      She's not saying being gay is a choice, but it is a choice to live in sin or not.

      June 15, 2011 at 11:29 am |
    • tb63

      And I have a coice to believe that. Sorry, I can't.

      "I was gay but now happily married". Wow, just like that. Good for you.

      June 15, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • Gayallthe way!

      You were not really gay, a true gay person does not have a choice. You were bise-xual, not gay. You might have found personal happiness but a true gay person who is in a loving and rewarding relationship with someone of the same s-ex is just as happy if not more. The gay person has constant prejudice toward them while coming out and accepting themselves, once they are fully loving who they are, their love runs deep too. It's a personal journey only those that are truly gay understand. A straight person doesn't have to deal with the prejudice and hatred like we do, especially from so called Christians!

      June 15, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • Artist


      No one chooses to be a sinner but we are all just that and born into it. You must choose to get out of sin as I did...yes I was gay but now happily married and more satisfied than ever before in my life! I chose Jesus and He brought me to being a whole person in union with my husband. Do I still sin? Yes as we all will until He comes again but I try to not purposefully and habitually sin! Chose to get out!
      BI wife, that is so hot.

      June 15, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
  18. PoconoPhil

    For the record, I am neither gay nor an atheist. I just have a problem with ignorance, hypocrisy, intolerance, and using faith as a reason to hate and condemn. I would rather have my children emulate the moral code of tb63 and Mr. Lemon than any of the judgmental zealots here.

    June 14, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  19. tb63

    He's right. There's no point arguing. As a gay man, I'm here to tell you it's not a choice. I know that beyond all doubt. And yet some will still insist it is a choice as if they can possibly know. They do not.

    So what do I care whether or not it's a sin? I can't do anything about it other than live my life the best I can. If it is a sin it is no more so than every other person's on the face of the earth.

    So have a nice day everybody!

    June 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • tb63

      My bad. That was supposed to be a reply to PoconoPhil.

      June 14, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • Headless Chocolate Rabbit Hanging on a Cross

      Christian's idea of freedom is freedom under God's Law, not the Const i tution. They are no different than the Muslims in the ME. Each day that passes it seems Christians are more of a threat to The People's freedoms.

      June 14, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  20. PoconoPhil

    Again, no sense arguing with the self-righteous, judgmental hypocrites like "crucified" (an arrogant a moniker if ever there was one). They're firmly convinced they're right, and they know the mind of God, despite all evidence to the contrary. Using their own logic: (1) God made you who you are; (2) If you're gay, you are depraved, vile, and sinful; therefore (3) God made you that way. So either (1) God made you in a way that God hates, or (2) They're wrong (nah, can't be that!).

    Oh, of course you CHOSE to be that way. Hmm, let's see, I choose to be a way that will make myself ostracized and the object of ridicule, bullying, tormenting, and judgment by the self-appointed moral police. Good idea.

    If there is a God, He loves you as your true nature. The only ones that don't are the ignorant.

    June 14, 2011 at 2:53 pm |
    • Info

      Don't bother with crucified, many posters have shown him being gay is not a choice that it is genetic , that his scriptures have nothing to do with gay as sin and have showed how his equation he knows nothing about proves nothing (he doesn't even know how to spell the man who made the equations name) he continue the same arguments over and over after he the truth is shown he'll leave and come back with the same arguments again

      he is just hiding behind his "beliefs" to justify being so hateful and un-Christlike

      June 15, 2011 at 1:48 am |
    • crucified

      @info I don't remember you being Christian..talk about hiding behind your beliefs..anyway.people shall go back and read the comments and make desicions for themselves...you however, have made yourself defensive and worried.

      June 15, 2011 at 8:16 am |
    • TheTruth

      "info" – you are correct, at least we know they will be going to hell for their lies and prejudice.

      June 15, 2011 at 8:33 am |
    • Info


      what the heck are you talking about? You are hiding behind your beliefs your just to hateful to see it.


      You have to prove that hell is actually real and the netherworld and hades are not before anyone can take your threat seriously, Makes no sense for an all loving and forgiving God to create a hell anyway. Also the Bible does not condenm gays to hell it was about pagan s-ex rituals and prost-itions so much for talking the "truth" your just as ignorant and hateful as crucified soon you won't be able to hide behind your faith when equal rights are granted for all.

      June 15, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
    • TheTruth

      Ummm info it's called sarcasm, you're too funny, insulting others while trying to call them out on it. You're a true hypocrite! LMAO!

      June 15, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
    • Real Info

      whoa that wasn't me my handle was stolen, sorry truth and crucified even though I don't agree with your logic crucifed I wouldn't accuse you like that without proof.

      Truth sorry too that was uncalled for as well

      June 15, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
    • Info

      don't you wanna have a little fun with them?

      June 15, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • Info

      "don't you wanna have a little fun with them?"

      You're emotionally immature, grow up.

      June 15, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
    • Jen Sharpley

      Couldnt have said it better myself, Phil. My logical reasoning deduces the exact same arguments. I believe that any sane person would arrive at the same arguments. However, in some instances on this discussion topic, the word "sane" was just about the furthest thing from my mind.

      June 20, 2011 at 11:15 am |
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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.