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May 31st, 2013
04:19 PM ET

Baptists plan exodus from Boy Scouts

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) - For Southern Baptist pastor Tim Reed, it was Scripture versus the Scouts.

“God’s word explicitly says homosexuality is a choice, a sin,” said Reed, pastor of First Baptist Church of Gravel Ridge in Jacksonville, Arkansas.

So when the Boy Scouts of America voted to lift its ban on openly gay youths on May 24, Reed said the church had no choice but to cut its charter with Troop 542.

“It’s not a hate thing here,” Reed told CNN affiliate Fox 16. “It’s a moral stance we must take as a Southern Baptist church.”

Southern Baptist leaders say Reed is not alone.

Baptist churches sponsor nearly 4,000 Scout units representing more than 100,000 youths, according to the Boy Scouts of America.

That number could drop precipitously.

The Southern Baptist Convention, the country’s largest Protestant denomination, will soon urge its 45,000 congregations and 16 million members to cut ties with the Scouts, according to church leaders.

The denomination will vote on nonbinding but influential resolutions during a convention June 11-12 in Houston.

“There’s a 100% chance that there will be a resolution about disaffiliation at the convention,” said Richard Land, the outgoing head of the Southern Baptists’ Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, “and a 100% chance that 99% of people will vote for it.”

“Southern Baptists are going to be leaving the Boy Scouts en masse,” Land continued.

Roger “Sing” Oldham, a spokesman for the Southern Baptist Convention, emphasized that local congregations make their own decision on the Scouts.

But he, too, said he expects Baptist delegates, which the church calls “messengers,” to voice their disagreement with the BSA's decision to allow gay youths.

“With this policy change, the Boy Scouts’ values are contradictory to the basic values of our local churches,” Oldham said.

Several religious groups with strong Scouting ties support the new policy.

“We have heard from both those who support the amended policy and those who would have preferred it would not have changed,” said BSA spokesman Deron Smith.

Faith-based organizations charter more than 70% of Scout chapters, providing meeting space and leadership, according to the BSA.

“There have been some organizations that have decided not to renew their charters with Scouting," said Smith, "but we can’t quantify the impact of the amended policy."

The National Jewish Committee on Scouting, the United Church of Christ, the Episcopal Church, the Unitarian Universalist Association and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which sponsors more Scout units than any other faith, all endorsed the change.

The National Catholic Committee on Scouting, which is run with oversight from a bishop, said Thursday that allowing gay youths in the Scouts does not conflict with church teaching. Each bishop will decide whether or not to allow churches in his diocese to charter Scout units, the committee added.

“We ask that Catholic Scouters and chartered organization heads not rush to judgment,” said Edward Martin, chairman of the National Catholic Committee on Scouting.

But the Rev. Derek Lappe, pastor of the Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in Bremerton, Washington, has already made up his mind.

“I do not feel that it is possible for us to live out, and to teach, the authentic truth about human sexuality within the confines of the Boy Scout’s new policy,” said Lappe.

The priest told CNN affiliate FOX16 that his parish will part ways with the Scouts and develop its own programs.

There may soon be an alternative to the Scouts for social conservatives like Lappe.

John Stemberger, founder of On My Honor, a group that opposed the Scouts’ change in policy, plans to convene conservatives in Louisville, Kentucky, in June to consider forming a new Scout-like group, which could be up and running by the end of 2013.

“Churches and Scoutmasters are looking for leadership and direction,” said Stemberg, an attorney in Orlando, Florida.

A number of conservative religious denominations already sponsor their own groups.

For instance, the Southern Baptists have the Royal Ambassadors, an explicitly Christian program founded in 1908 for boys in first through sixth grade. (A similar group called Challengers equips older boys in “mission education.”)

The name comes from the New Testament, in which the Apostle Paul tells Christians to be “ambassadors for Christ.”

The estimated 31,000 Royal Ambassadors pledge “ to become a well-informed, responsible follower of Christ; to have a Christlike concern for all people; to learn how to carry the message of Christ around the world; to work with others in sharing Christ; and to keep myself clean and healthy in mind and body."

While not as outdoorsy as the Boy Scouts, Ambassadors do camp and play sports, said Land, who was a member of the group during the 1950s. But instead of merit badges for archery and bird study, young Ambassadors earn patches for memorizing Bible verses and mission work.

Southern Baptists said they are preparing for a surge of interest in the Royal Ambassadors at their upcoming convention in Houston.

“We really have an opportunity here to strengthen our RA programs,” the Rev. Ernest Easley, chairman of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee, said in a sermon last Sunday, “and to get the boys in a program where they’re going to be protected, where there’s a high moral standard and where they will have an opportunity to learn about camping, missions, evangelism in the local church.”

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Baptist • Belief • Christianity • Church • Gay rights • gender issues • Politics • United States

soundoff (10,821 Responses)
  1. elison

    Next the Baptists will shun the United Way, the Red Cross, and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America...because they also are contaminated with gays and other liberals.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • hopelessinseattle

      To my knowledge none of those groups are being asked to be chartered by Baptist churches and to use our facilities. Apples and Oranges.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
  2. GlamRocker

    Oh no, the Baptists are leaving the scouts. Who gives a crap? The scouts will be better off.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
  3. oldwhiteguy

    And this matters because....?
    I've lived in the south.
    I attended Southern Baptist Church.
    It's the biggest den of liars, adulterers, bigots and backstabbing deceivers I've ever been exposed to.
    The Firesign Theatre skit involving The Powerhouse Church of the Presumptuous Assumption of the Guiding Light seems to outline it about right.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Oh blinding light...
      Oh light that blinds...
      I cannot see...
      look out for me...

      June 3, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • Jax

      Congratulations on your escape.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Wes Scott

      10-4, Eleanor!

      June 3, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
  4. Dave Saunders

    "There may soon be an alternative to the Scouts for social conservatives like Lappe." – Yes, it's called the Hitler Youth. Good riddance.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      @Dave – That was awesome, "Hitler Youth." LOL

      June 3, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
  5. Middleway14

    Hopefully, these zombie jesus dinosaurs will rot in a hole somewhere so that boy scouts of all walks of life millions of years from now can find the remains of a long lost inferior sub-species of human.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Choir Loft

      No bigotry here....

      June 3, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • Jon O

      Awww, poor little bigot sad because the little gay people don't just roll over and take his abuse anymore.

      I like watching you bigoted fairy-tale believing whack-jobs swallow equality for all the minority groups you oppress worldwide.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
  6. Bill Deacon

    While it's hard to find data on the effects of gaay marriage that are not biased in one direction or another, these statistics seems indisputable.

    • The STD test required to obtain a marriage license was eliminated five months after same-seex "marriages" began in Massachusetts. This was despite an increase in syphilis cases and other STDs in hom0seexual men in Massachusetts at the time (according to the Mass. Dept. of Public Health).
    • In recent years state funding for HIV/AIDS programs has gone up considerably in Massachusetts, along with the proportion of hom0seexual-related cases. According to the Massachusetts Dept. of Public Health, even though the total number of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses has declined, the proportion caused by male hom0seexual behavior rose by over 30% from 2000-2009. Thus, for the last several years the state has budgeted $30-$35 million per year for these programs. This dwarfs spending on any other viral disease that we are aware of.
    Every year more state money goes to deal with the high incidence of hom0seexual domestic violence. Since "gaay marriage" began, Massachusetts has one of the highest proportions of hom0seexuals living as couples in the country. Given the extremely dysfunctional nature of hom0seexual relationships, the Massachusetts Legislature has felt the need to spend more and more money to deal with that problem. "Gay domestic violence programs" have also become a major lobbying push in the State House by the hom0seexual group MassEquality. This year it comprises a considerable portion of a $5.5 million state budget item (according to MassEquality). This is up from $100,000 budgeted in 2007.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • JRNY

      Again with your cut and past from faux news Bill...enough already. What about you breeders and your STD's???

      June 3, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Very few states have STD test prior to marriage for a very long time......

      June 3, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Lamb of dog

      How much is spent on therapy for children molested by priests?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
    • Jon O

      Actually, it's not Faux News – it's from massresistance . org, a Mass based anti-gay hate site filled with misinformation. Basically, Bill is a lying bigot.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • The Flip Side

      Bill, let's not forget the public money also spent on Abortions for your straight women who open up and then want to expel it! To say nothing about the straight disease of Herpes.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
    • .

      "Given the extremely dysfunctional nature of hom0seexual relationships"

      2012

      YeahRight

      The American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, the American School Counselor Association, the National Association of School Psychologists, and the National Association of SocialWorkers, together representing more than 480,000 mental health professionals, have all taken the position that homosexuality is not a mental disorder and thus is not something that needs to or can be “cured."

      Like their heterosexual counterparts, many gay and lesbian people want to form stable, long-lasting, committed relationships. Indeed, many of them do and that large proportions are currently involved in such a relationship and that a substantial number of those couples have been together 10 or more years.

      Research demonstrates that the psychological and social aspects of committed relationships between same-sex partners closely resemble those of heterosexual partnerships. Like heterosexual couples, same-sex couples form deep emotional attachments and commitments. Heterosexual and same-sex couples alike face similar issues concerning intimacy, love, equity, loyalty, and stability, and they go through similar processes to address those issues. Research examining the quality of intimate relationships also shows that gay and lesbian couples have levels of relationship satisfaction similar to or higher than those of heterosexual couples.

      A large number of gay and lesbian couples raise children. Children and teenagers whose parents provide loving guidance in the context of secure home environments are more likely to flourish – and this is just as true for children of same-sex parents as it is for children of opposite-sex parents. Based on research findings, mental health professionals have also reached a consensus that the quality of relationships among significant adults in a child’s or adolescent’s life is associated with adjustment. When relationships between parents are characterized by love, warmth, cooperation, security, and mutual support, children and adolescents are more likely to show positive adjustment. In contrast, when relationships between parents are conflict-ridden and acrimonious, the adjustment of children and adolescents is likely to be less favorable. These correlations are just as true for children of same-sex parents as for children of opposite-sex parents.

      Assertions that heterosexual couples are inherently better parents than same sex couples, or that the children of lesbian or gay parents fare worse than children of heterosexual parents, have no support in the scientific research literature. On the contrary, the scientific research that has directly compared outcomes for children with gay and lesbian parents with outcomes for children with heterosexual parents has consistently shown that the former are as fit and capable as the latter and that their children are as psychologically healthy and well adjusted as children reared by heterosexual parents.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Goshers! You mean Dill Doe the great Catholic is using bogus information from a spurious source?

      What else is new?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
  7. Choir Loft

    Land of the free? Not any more.
    ***
    When a group of people decide to exercise their moral integrity and live the way they choose they are now condemned by the self-righteous gay and atheist community. There is no respect for others who wish to live as they choose.
    ***
    If God does not judge America then He will have to apologize to Sodom & Gomorrah.
    and that's just me, hollering from the choir loft...

    June 3, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Roger

      See mama k's post below.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • M

      If you let go of that religion of hate you're holding onto, you'll feel so much better.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • JRNY

      Oh wow Choir Loft, I couldn't have said it better! YOU belong to that group that's trying to force its beliefs and way of life on other people with your silly, dead jesus stories.

      Oh, and that's just me singing from a freer place than you'll ever be.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • Jon O

      Wrong.

      You have not made a choice about how YOU wish to live, you've made a choice about how GAY people have to live to meet your standards.

      Quite different.

      No one is forcing you to be gay, engage in gay relationships or let gay people into your home.

      Are they?

      No. No they are not.

      What they are doing is awarding them equal protection under the law in a nation founded on individual freedom and the concept of equality.

      You're not a victim. You're a oppressive fascist who wants to cry martyr now that all the preferential treatment you've gotten is finally dying off... just like it did when you bigots tried to stop black civil rights and the women's right to vote.

      Keep lying about how oppressed you are – it's hilarious to watch.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • elison

      "Self righteous"? You're really working extra hard to project there, aren't you?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • @@

      Still land of the free. The BSA was free to change their policy and they did. They did it to become more inclusive and still not violate their principles. The morals you are holding them to are yours, not theirs. And your morals are not anymore or less important than theirs, just different. However, society as a whole agrees with them not you.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      No one in this country has EVER been free of judgement by fellow citizens. The problem is that the traditionally judgmental majority is finding themselves being judged. I seem to recall a warning about that by someone important to Christians.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Choir Loft

      JRNY:
      I don't get a commission on saved souls and I certainly don't care what you believe one way or the other.
      But the warnings have been made of the consequences of sin. Provision has been made to escape judgment if only the reader will be humble enough to accept Jesus. God is love and wishes to forgive all those that hate Him if only they will repent of their wickeness and sin.
      ***
      Haters of God are only condemning themselves. No Christian need lift a finger to cause it. By the words of their own mouths are sinners judged.
      and that's just me, hollering from the choir loft...

      June 3, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Ad nauseam, CL. Your singing is crap.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'Haters of God are only condemning themselves.'

      hard to hate what you dont believe exists.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • In Reality

      You still can't get it through your thick skull, Choir Loft, that Sodom and Gomorrah did not deal with gays and lesbians. It had to do with the visiting angels being attacked that made God mad. Quit using inappropriate Scripture references already that you don't understand.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Kimberly

      "If God does not judge America then He will have to apologize to Sodom & Gomorrah."

      It is helpful to post both passages of Jude, 1:6 and 1:7 together, as they are meant to be read this way.

      6 And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day. 7 In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

      Note that the humans are exhibiting the same behaviors as the angels. Note, also, that the sexual immorality and perversion mentioned isn't homosexuality. Scholars who have studied this passage have concluded that the perversion alluded to is actually rape, which was rampant.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
  8. ll

    Southern Baptists: Just our way of saying we really don't love a whole bunch of people, based on their demographics.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
  9. mama k

    I believe the church has every right to do as they wish with their relationships and affiliations. That being said, many of us also have the right to point out the incredible ignorance revealed as many posters here echo their opinion that they claim as a belief that being gay is a "Christian" judgment of perverse "sin". What has occurred to me is that it is a level of ignorance, but also hypocrisy that is very deep and wide because we know three things to be true:

    1. The type of Christian that has the belief described above is out of step with current scientific knowledge from biology and psychology about homosexuality. This is similar to when the RCC didn't believe Galileo's claims at first, but had to reckon with science evenutally.

    2. The type of Christian that has the belief described above is in disagreement with other Christians. Each think they are the spokesperson for their God and yet they disagree.

    3. The type of Christian that has the belief described above does not treat all moral "sins" in the same way. Look at issues from the Bible on divorce for instance.

    It's pretty obvious that it looks foolish to claim that one knows a Christian objective (from God) moral truth on this issue in light of the ignorance of current scientific knowledge, inter-Christian conflict, and hypocrisy. Quite simply, Christians no longer have a leg to stand on in their judgment of gays.
    ==

    June 3, 2013 at 12:10 pm |

    • Psychology

      The American Psychological Association states "there are probably many reasons for a person's sexual orientation and the reasons may be different for different people", and says most people's sexual orientation is determined at an early age. Research into how sexual orientation in males may be determined by genetic or other prenatal factors plays a role in political and social debates about homosexuality, and also raises concerns about genetic profiling and prenatal testing."

      Professor Michael King states: "The conclusion reached by scientists who have investigated the origins and stability of sexual orientation is that it is a human characteristic that is formed early in life, and is resistant to change. Scientific evidence on the origins of homosexuality is considered relevant to theological and social debate because it undermines suggestions that sexual orientation is a choice."

      The Royal College of Psychiatrists stated in 2007:

      "Despite almost a century of psychoanalytic and psychological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person's fundamental heterosexual or homosexual orientation. It would appear that sexual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of genetic factors and the early uterine environment. Sexual orientation is therefore not a choice."

      Biology

      The following is from the article:

      Homosexuality ultimately a result of gene regulation, researchers find (12/11/2012 – LiveScience)

      [ The search for a "gay gene" may be off-target, new research finds. Another process called epigenetics that switches genes on and off may explain why homosexuality runs in families.

      Epigenetics are heritable changes caused by factors other than DNA. Instead of traits getting passed down through the genes, epigenetic change happens because of the way genes are regulated, or turned on and off.

      These genetic regulators may be the reason homosexuality persists in nature despite the fact that gay people are less likely to reproduce, suggests the new study published in the journal The Quarterly Review of Biology.

      "These things have evolved because they're good for the parents, but they sometimes, not [with] high frequency, but sometimes carry over" into offspring, study researcher William Rice, an evolutionary geneticist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, told LiveScience. In a male fetus, Rice and his colleagues write, an epigenetic change that benefited the mother may lead to "feminization" of sexual preference — homo- or bisexuality. The same may be true for epigenetic changes passed down by dad to a female fetus. (The terms feminization and masculinization of sexual preference refer to sexual orientation only — not to physical or personality traits of the offspring.)

      The findings add to past research suggesting gay men haven't died out, because female relatives of gay men tend to have more children on average than other females. The study researchers specifically found that two genes passed on through the maternal line could produce this effect.

      Hormones, epigenetics and orientation

      Rice and his colleagues focused on epi-marks, which are molecular changes that act like temporary "switches" to turn genes on and off. If a gene is a blueprint, the epi-mark is the construction foreman who makes sure the product gets built. An epi-mark also determines when, where and how much a gene is expressed, according to the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis.

      These molecular switches are usually erased very early in the developmental process, but they can be passed down from generation to generation, too, Rice said.

      Some epi-marks are particularly important during fetal development, when they promote normal physical development in the sexes despite natural variations in testosterone during pregnancy. Researchers know that fetal exposure to too much testosterone can masculinize the genitals, brain or behavior of a genetically female fetus. Likewise, too little testosterone can make a genetically male fetus more feminized.

      But here's the catch: There's lots of overlap between the levels of testosterone male and female fetuses get exposed to. That means there must be another side to the story, Rice and his colleagues wrote.

      That side appears to be epigenetics, Rice said.

      "Early in development, we think these epi-marks are laid down so that girl fetuses will be relatively insensitive to testosterone and male fetuses will be relatively sensitive to testosterone," Rice said.

      Biological behavior

      Thus, if an epi-mark that kept a mother from getting exposed to high testosterone in development gets passed on to her son — the opposite sex — it could desensitize him to testosterone, contributing to his sexual preference for men. Similarly, if a male-specific epi-mark from dad gets passed to a daughter, it could "masculinize" her sexual preference, making her more interested in women.

      These findings could explain why twin studies show that homosexuality runs in families, but no "gay gene" can be found, Rice said. In identical twins, there's about a 20 percent chance that if one twin is gay, the other will be too. If genetic change were responsible for homosexuality, you'd expect a much higher match, Rice said. Epigenetics, however, can explain the heritability without the need for a specific genetic change.

      The hypothesis could be tested by examining epigenetic marks in parents of kids with gay versus straight offspring, Rice said. There are, of course, concerns that this knowledge could be used by parents who want to avoid gay offspring, Rice said, but that concern already exists around certain hormonal conditions in utero, which are known to contribute to an increased chance of offspring being lesbians.

      "That cat's already out of the bag," Rice said. He added that an understanding of the biological underpinnings of homosexuality could help emphasize that same-sex behavior is not "unnatural."

      "In fact, it's a major part of the natural world," Rice said. Fourteen percent of Western gulls raise chicks in female-female pairs, he pointed out. And 8 percent of male sheep show zero interest in fertile ewes, but get sexually excited by other rams. ]

      June 3, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Choir Loft

      The Bible condemns the gay and atheist life style. Are Christians now supposed to condemn God's Holy Word because American society wants to live in rebellion against the Most High?
      ***
      If God does not judge America, He will have to apologize to Sodom & Gomorrah.
      and that's just me, hollering from the choir loft...

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'Choir Loft – The Bible condemns the gay and atheist life style. Are Christians now supposed to condemn God's Holy Word because American society wants to live in rebellion against the Most High?'

      It also condemns a lot of other things that these groups dont seem to mind accepting, such as divorce.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • My Dog is a jealous Dog

      @Choir Loft

      Wow – what exactly is an atheist lifestyle? Do I also have a "Polish lifestyle" or a "right-handed lifestyle"?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • Roger

      @ChoirClutz: Christianity has to come to terms that being gay isn't a lifestyle choice. Just like they had to come to terms with Galileo's findings.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Logic, reason, common sense and many different sciences show the bible to be wrong....how moral or correct is it to teach otherwise?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Kimberly

      "If God does not judge America, He will have to apologize to Sodom & Gomorrah."

      It is helpful to post both passages of Jude, 1:6 and 1:7 together, as they are meant to be read this way.

      6 And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day. 7 In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

      Note that the humans are exhibiting the same behaviors as the angels. Note, also, that the sexual immorality and perversion mentioned isn't homosexuality. Scholars who have studied this passage have concluded that the perversion alluded to is actually rape, which was rampant.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
  10. mike

    Time to take away the tax exempt status of the SB. After all why would we give tax support to a hate organization.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • ezra

      Define hate group! You may see yourself in the image.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Lamb of dog

      True. I hate bigots and hypocrites. And southern Baptists have plenty.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • Choir Loft

      501.c3 tax exempt status holds the tongue of many who ascend to the pulpit. In order to maintain the exemption, preachers are denied freedom of speech against political candidates or issues, immoral trends, the government, etc.
      ***
      USA tax exempt status suppresses the voice of the church. It operates the same way as German National Socialist financial pressure suppressed the 1930's churches. If the US exemption were removed, a tidal wave of speech against immorality and government policies would result. And I'm all for that.
      ***
      and that's just me, hollering from the choir loft...

      June 3, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • Jon O

      What planet do you live on?

      Churches are already filled with rhetoric against immorality, you lying sack.

      What they can't do is specifically endorse candidates or platforms.

      You can't even tell the truth about the environment in which you live and YOU'RE supposed to be representative of a better morality?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
    • Choir Loft

      Jon O:
      I've not heard a sermon that ranted against the gay and atheist life style, and I've listened to quite a few from the pulpit.
      On the other hand, I've read a lot of tripe from ignorant bigots who think they know what's being said in church – even though they've not been there in a long time if ever at all.
      ***
      Why no negative sermons?
      Because negative sermons, as well as being forbidden by 501.c3 do not inspire contributions and donations. Niether do sermons on repentance – and I've NEVER heard one of those.
      and that's just me, hollering from the choir loft....

      June 3, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • cedar rapids

      'I've not heard a sermon that ranted against the gay and atheist life style,'

      you need to get out more.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
  11. Baptist born and raised

    I grew up in the Southern Baptist church, and thinking about it, what I remember is how there were so many rules about everything a person might want to do but couldn't because it wasn't allowed. I didn't keep being a Baptist when I became an adult. I am a Christian, and I worry about myself and my own relationship with God... no one else's. Also, I am gay. I think it is great that the Baptists are leaving the Boy Scouts. I don't like them, and I don't like the Boy Scouts. I also don't like priests or pedophiles. Drunk drivers are not on my "good to be list" either. The main thing about, as I said... I don't push my beliefs or ways on anyone else. You live your life. I'll live mine.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • elison

      So true. Religion = man made set of rules. Religion =/= spirituality.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • Lamb of dog

      Good for you. Thanks for supporting my belief bellow.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • Lamb of dog

      I need a keyboard. Touchscreens are no good for typing.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Jeff

      Why would you hate the scouts? I was never a Scout, but it "was" a great organization. It seems to me that the LGBT community has purposely damage this group. Why? BSA has produced great citizens for a long time. If you don't agree with someone please just walk or start your own group.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
  12. Lamb of dog

    It's a fact that most baptists are gay.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
    • Baptist born and raised

      Being gay myself, I can tell you that I didn't find that many other gays in my church. It was one of the biggest in our part of the state. I promise... most Baptists are not gay. And we wouldn't want them to be!

      June 3, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
  13. Brent

    Fine. The U.S. government allows gays, so Baptists can leave the country too if they want to be consistent. They can go to one of those gay-hating countries in Africa that they influence so much.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • ezra

      You are intolerant are you not?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
  14. Lamb of dog

    What a deal for the BSA. Gays in close minded idiots out.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • MarkinFL

      Yep. A classic win/win.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
  15. ll

    I'm surprised that Southern Baptists still exist. But then again, if the whole sister wife type of religion still can be sold, I guess there are people dumb enough to buy it.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
  16. Christopher

    Good riddance to ignorant bigots.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
  17. Vince

    Bye bye....don't let the door hit ya hon your way out!

    June 3, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  18. AverageJoe76

    God made everything. And he hates roughly most of what he made (because it's all 'Sin-a-sin-sinny'). Why is God bi-polar?

    June 3, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • M

      Yeah, it doesn't make sense. God destroyed over 99% of all life he created? Why?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
  19. Louie

    Good riddance.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
  20. ll

    ..Because everybody knows that the YMCA has infiltrated the Boy Scouts. In no time at all, our tractor supply stores will go to pot. And our All-U-Can Eat buffets will be overrun by the Mexicans. Then the only American organization, Walmart will become a front for Chinese imports....

    June 3, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Akira

      This made me laugh; thanks!

      June 3, 2013 at 12:07 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.