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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. love being a mom

    I thought churches are supposed to encourage " sinners" to come to them. and I guess all the divorced Baptists week have to remarry their exes or leave the church, along with all the other sinners.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • Max

      Fitty is a hermaphodite. He actually can go fuck himself.

      June 3, 2013 at 8:47 pm |
    • love being a mom

      billfit, just curious as to why someone who doesn't know ANYTHING about a person would just randomly make an very crude and very uninformed comment about that person. surely you don't think it would bother even a person with only a basic bit of intelligence. It only makes you look really, really uneducated.

      June 3, 2013 at 9:11 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Or about 15 years old. The trouble is that billfitt's CHRONOLOGICAL age is 15; unfortunately, his mental capacity is that of a retarded monkey.

      June 3, 2013 at 9:15 pm |
    • love being a mom

      the real Tom, I think you might be giving him too much credit!

      June 3, 2013 at 9:20 pm |
    • The real Tom

      @love: 😉

      June 3, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
  2. matt

    All Baptists care about is cash. Faith. God. None of these things come into play. They are worse now than the Vatican ever was in all of history, they just don't wield the same power.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • Ken78

      I thought it was the Jews who only cared about money.

      No I'm confused.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:11 pm |
    • matt

      Just a cultural stereotype. Baptists are another story. Not the individual people but many "Baptist" organizations. Many of the people themselves are simply misguided and I can't fault people for that.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • The real Tom

      If that's the case, honey, then why are you blowing a gasket over them?

      If they don't matter, why are you so upset you're nearly cataleptic?

      June 3, 2013 at 7:44 pm |
    • so long blabtists

      a clever, accurate, concise summary. A+

      June 3, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • matt

      I really don't see why Christians don't like Iran. Based on Iran's laws alone it sounds exactly like the kind of place a Christian would love.

      Either way I don't think anyone thinks listening to Christians about how the world should work. You folks had your chance and what did you do with it? The Dark Ages.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
    • .

      "All gays care about is un nat ural se x and spotligh"

      Sociologists and psychologists hold that some of the emotionality in prejudice stems from subconscious attitudes that cause a person to ward off feelings of inadequacy by projecting them onto a target group. That's right folks homophobic people like this are just insecure and immature.

      June 4, 2013 at 9:19 am |
  3. lively and courteous discussion

    The statue is of Peter, a man.

    The infinity is eternity.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
  4. Just wondering

    I find interesting that some many people are praising the Mormons for there position but seem to have completely missed all the other Christiinas groups that took the same side.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:36 pm |
    • Ken78

      None of those groups are Christians.

      If they were actually even trying to be Christian, they might want to ask themselves why the folks who are praising their doctrine the most are atheists. LOL!

      June 3, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • Just wondering

      first the Episcopal Church, the Unitarian Church areChirstian as are the Catholics also the Jewish group agreed with the BSA. just no one seemed to notice them just the Mormons.

      Second As a Catholic I really can't agree with the baptist position. I agree they have a right to there postion and can see their point of view. However I doubt they would want to be shuned by peope becasue they disagree with them so she should treat the BSa how the want to be treated.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Just wondering

      You said, "I find interesting that some many people are praising the Mormons for there position but seem to have completely missed all the other Christiinas groups that took the same side."
      It was the big surprise. More liberal churches were expected to support the change. Quite a few are disappointed it was limited to scouts and didn't include the leaders.

      The position of the LDS was simply less clear, and many feared they would be the most vocal opponents.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:52 pm |
    • The real Tom

      So, bull, you're hoping for people to die? To suffer?

      Wow. Jeebus must be so proud of you.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:46 pm |
    • Just wondering

      @LinCA might be the first time I've heard someone call the catholic church liberal

      June 4, 2013 at 8:41 am |
    • LinCA

      @Just wondering

      You said, "might be the first time I've heard someone call the catholic church liberal"
      Compared to some, the catholic church is a breath of fresh air.

      Even so, I'm not sure if they were expected to support the change, or if it was a pleasant surprise when they did.

      June 4, 2013 at 9:50 am |
  5. jrbartlettjr

    it is also noteworthy that Southern Baptists and other mainstream protestant denominations continue to lose membership. the heavy-handed moralism conveyed by the quotations in this article do not meet the needs of humanity, and they do not square with the example of Christ, either.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:18 pm |
    • Ken78

      What do you think you know about Christ? Do you believe in Him as God's Son? And do you know what He said?

      "Wde is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction, and many there be who go in there. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."

      Jesus clearly taught that the vast majority of people are going to Hell. The Church is not in the popularity business. It is in the immutable truth business. Deal with it.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • Kilgore Trout

      Ken, what makes you so sure that you are the one who knows the narrow path?

      June 3, 2013 at 6:27 pm |
    • jrbartlettjr

      Ken is correct in saying that Christ had harsh words for many - but Ken misses the point of the Gospel when he doesn't recognize that it was the moralistic Church Fathers and Holier-Than-Thou Church Members for whom He had the harshest words. for the Woman at the well and Zacchaeus in the Tree, Christ has words of forgiveness and encouragement. and one side note for Ken, Christ also preached clearly that "thou shall not judge or else you will be judged." specifically, if you'll recall, He said, "forget about that little splinter in your neighbor's eye; worry more about the large plank in your own."

      June 3, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • Ken78

      jrbartlettjr, that is the most often quoted and most misunderstood of Jesus' teachings.

      I am not "judging" anyone. Certainly less than you would "judge" any murderer, pedophile, or child r apist. What do you say about those practices? That Christians should not comdemn those practices as sin?

      Yet somehow, magically, when it comes to h0m0____ity, Christians are not supposed to say THAT is sin, or else they are judging.

      It is every bit the sin that adultery, murder, theft, etc. are.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
      • jrbartlettjr

        Ken, asserting that "majority of people are going to Hell" and then asserting that you are the one to determine who will and who won't - that is by definition judging people.

        June 3, 2013 at 7:23 pm |
    • One one

      @ken, from what you said it's in the eternal torture business.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • Ken78

      You might want to point out the part where I asserted that I am one to determine who will and who won't..

      TIA!

      I said it is a sin. It says so all over the Bible, including the New Testament.

      I also suggested that you judge people all the time and asked what you think about that. Color me unsurprised that you ignored that.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:32 pm |
    • The real Tom

      If your god created everything, then how is being gay a "sin", Kenny? How silly. People who are gay aren't making a choice to be gay; they're simply attracted to others of the same gender. So what? What is it that's so terrible about it? If it was that awful then why does your god allow it to occur in the SAME PERCENTAGE OF THE POPULATION YEAR AFTER YEAR?

      June 3, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
  6. jrbartlettjr

    out of curiosity, do Southern Baptists also banish a youth from their congregation if that youth confesses, "I am gay"? it's one thing to preach against it if you believe that. and yet another to banish persons out of the organization. the Southern Baptists are going to have a hard time squaring this policy against Scout Troops with Christ's teachings in the Gospel.

    June 3, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
    • Ken78

      The New Testament explicity REQUIRES Christians to excommunicate those who refuse to abandon a sinful practice. Confession has NEVER been enough. It is all about REPENTANCE. If a youth has engaged in h0m0____lity, confesses and repents, there is no problem. But if – like some folks here want to do – that youth says "I engaged in h0m0_____ity, there is nothing wrong with it, and I plan in going home right after worship services and doing it again!" . . . well, then Houston, we have a problem.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:18 pm |
    • jrbartlettjr

      Ken, there were no Christians in the Gospel. Christ was a Jew. he said n

      June 3, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
    • jrbartlettjr

      oops, Christ said nothing about this in the Gospel.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:21 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      How many of the 700,000+ believers that have an abortion each year in the USA get excommunicated? My guess is zero.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:27 pm |
    • Ken78

      jrbartlettjr,

      Sure there were Christains. The Apostles were Christains.

      Speaking of whom, Christ said to them:

      "I will give you the keys to the kingdom from heaven. Whatever you prohibit on earth will have been prohibited in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will have been permitted in heaven."

      So the Apostles' commands – for example the Apostle Paul's commands – are Christ's commands, too.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
    • Doobs

      Ken, it's interesting that you are in full support of excommunicating those who continue in sin.

      So what about the fat fucks filling the pews every Sunday? What about the divorced/remarried? What about all the Christian women who get abortions every year?

      You don't seem nearly as interested in excommunicating the gluttons, the gossips, the divorced, the remarried, the non-virgins, or those who've aborted fetuses. Guess it's easier to pick on a minority, rather than the rest of the asses filling the seats and filling the collection baskets.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • Akira

      Yes, Hot Air Ace, 83% of women getting abortions are Christian. What should be done about those women, Ken78?
      Rhe Bible says many things.
      One thing that ISN'T in the NT is Jesus condemning gays, or indeed, saying anything about gays at all.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • Hear This

      Ken,

      ""I will give you the keys to the kingdom from heaven. Whatever you prohibit on earth will have been prohibited in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will have been permitted in heaven."

      Well now, isn't that CONVENIENT! Some guy(s), writing under the name of "Matthew" claim that the "invisible boss upstairs" has given him and his cronies such grand authority. GMAB!

      June 3, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
    • Nice Try

      jrbartlettjr… Evidentially, you don't understand how the church and God works. There is a vast difference between someone who is a sinner and is crying out for help – and someone who is in sin, knows they're in sin, and just don't care and don't want to stop sinning. How God deals with each of those people is completely different. For the person who's crying out for help and who want's out, God can be merciful to that person and will send them the help they need. But for the other person who just don't care and who hates God and loves committing sin, the only solution in most cases is to cast them into hell and the lake. And the scriptures confirm this. There has been actually cases when God has specifically told the preacher or prophet to put that person out of the church…

      June 3, 2013 at 7:10 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Nice Try blabbers: "Evidentially, you don't understand how the church and God works."

      And YOU do? Boy, your god must be in dire straits if he needs a nitwit like you around to "explain" how he works. You couldn't explain ice to Eskimos.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
    • Nice Try

      Real Tom… Boy the truth really burns you up, don't it. LOL. All you're doing is confirming that I was right on target. Lies are something Lucifer will always ignore. But when truth is spoken, he sends morons like you to try to debunk it. LOL….

      June 3, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
    • The real Tom

      A hillbilly who says "Don't it" is calling someone else stupid?

      You're a bonehead, dude. You'll never be anything else.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:38 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Evidentially? You did mean "evidently", didn't you, dumbfvck? You're just too stupid to know the difference in meaning between the two. I'll bet you say "supposably", too.

      June 3, 2013 at 7:40 pm |
    • Ken78

      Doobs – perhaps you did not notice, but this blog is about h0m0____ity. Not gluttony, gossiping, drunkenness or adultery. But if you want to start a bog about those things, then folks who persist to practice those sins, deny that it is sin, and refuse to repent and try to stop doing those things should be excommunicated, too. Does that make you feel better? Not really, huh? As an atheist . . . why you care?

      June 3, 2013 at 7:45 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Kenny, you opened up the conversation to sinful practices. Why did you not mention abortion? Why haven't you answered the questions about abortion?

      June 3, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
    • Pete

      Ken I will take you seriously when you call for a law making divorce illegal, or adultery illegal until then it just looks like you are picking on gay people.

      June 4, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
  7. Huh

    Well, I'm not surprised to see Baptists getting ready to ditch the BSA. Gotta admit though, thoroughly shocked the Mormons are on boards with the BSA resolution.

    June 3, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • Saraswati

      It's not like the BSA are coming out an accepting hom.ose.xuality as. healthy and moral – they'll keep on booting lesbian moms as cub scout leaders and still won't let an atheist join. The real difference is that Mormons are a much better educated group than Baptists so while have have some silly ideas the average Mormon adult has a much better grasp on human psychology. They also don't have quite the same good and evil dichotomy going and believe only a very small number of people end up in anything like "hell"... so for a Mormon if your kid turns out gay it may not be very good but it isn't eternal hellfire. Lastly, Mormons believe that the US and its inst.itutions are devinely ordained and this likely also includes that Boy Scouts so they will be much more hesitant to split themseleves from what they would see as a major US inti.tution (not a legal federal inst.itution, but a cultural one with quasi-public status).

      June 3, 2013 at 5:14 pm |
    • Martin

      I'm not surprised at all. Mormons have learned quite well, in a relatively short period of time compared to other religions, that staying behind the 8-ball with respect to civil rights and science just isn't going to cut it for very long.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
  8. Scouting Leader

    Here's a non-hating angle....

    If you pick scouts as your activity of choice, that is up to you and your son, however, you cannot select your chartered organization.

    The loss here is the possibility of the program itself.

    The SBC here is merely holding the charter, if they have strong beliefs that they no longer wish to sponsor the organization, that is certainly their choice, this is still a free America...

    Speaking for myself only when I say that if I no longer liked something, I'd certainly want to stop participating and paying for it – just think if your favorite restaurant changed cooks, no one is forcing you to keep going because you don't like it...

    Responsibilities of chartered organizations include:

    Providing adequate meeting facilities.
    Providing quality leadership for the Scouting unit.
    Appointing a chartered organization representative to coordinate all Scouting unit operations within the organization.

    Nowhere in there is "pushing the agenda of the charter organization" or "touching little boys" either.

    Perhaps there will be some nice Civic organizations that will pick up some of these charters so that these boys won't be denied the opportunities that their father's had. I'd assume that they weren't made Baptist or gay by the experiences they had – which is why they suggested it to they own sons in the first place.

    As for the Baptist alternative:
    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.

    After a visit to their website – this reads more like Sunday-school curriculum mixed with day camp then anything else – truly looks like an interesting program, however, if you wanted to be in a all-faith mission-based, all-the-time program, Scouting was not the right program in the first place.

    I joined scouting for scouting, not for church or religion – my family and I get that through going and participating in church itself.

    June 3, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
    • snowboarder

      the SBC dropped the BSA for eliminating discrimination. that is a difficult excuse to accept as reasonable.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Pretty well reasoned post, and thank you for your contribution to Scouting. I wonder if CNN will do a report in a year that shows how many religious organizations have dropped their charter versus how many non-religious have picked one up. I'd say it's time for the atheist and hom0s3xual groups to put their money and time where their mouth is and start a few troops.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Bill, Given that the BSA still bans atheists and adult hom.ose.xuals that's a pretty silly request. Do you really think people should donate money to and sponsor people who think them immoral and ban them from membership? Really?

      June 3, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • Just wondering

      well said,

      @snowboarder, Do you consistantly support (bot financially and with direct effort) people and groups you disagree with?

      June 3, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      That's funny Sara. For one thing it shows the utter hilarity of the BSA's position. The last part of your post would make a great justification for the SBA too with only a minor rework.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
    • Science

      Hey faithy/bill too seems like you have not been weaned yet sort of like chadie .............reminds me of a 5 year old ?

      Monkey Teeth Help Reveal Neanderthal Weaning

      May 24, 2013 — Most modern human mothers wean their babies much earlier than our closest primate relatives. But what about our extinct relatives, the Neanderthals?

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130524104828.htm

      June 3, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
    • Akira

      Bill, what do you think the chances of American Atheists, say, getting a charter for the BSA, when the BSA explicity forbids atheist adults to even be leaders?

      June 3, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Zero Akira. I think the Scouts have made a tactical error that will cost them the entire organization eventually. They are trying to straddle a fence that they cannot possible maintain their current stance with.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
    • Akira

      Bill Deacon, with all due respect, "I’d say it’s time for the atheist and hom0s3xual groups to put their money and time where their mouth is and start a few troops" will never happen the way things stand, so why make such a statement knowing that?

      June 3, 2013 at 6:16 pm |
    • billfitt

      " I think the Scouts have made a tactical error that will cost them the entire organization eventually. They are trying to straddle a fence that they cannot possible maintain their current stance with."

      I think you are right about that one Deacon. It's likely that there were too many peds. voting because of the nature of the organization. This decision could very well come back to haunt them in a big way. Funny that you used the term "straddle" btw. LOL!!!!

      June 3, 2013 at 8:55 pm |
  9. Average American

    I’m not a Southern Baptist, but I am a Christian. What I see here is a group of people in a somewhat free nation choosing to not associate with another group that shares contradictory beliefs. That’s about it.

    I would like to challenge the people that read this story and feel hate for Christians welling up inside them to ask themselves a question in the privacy of their own home. Truthfully analyze your reaction and ask yourself, “Why so much hate toward Christians?” You don’t have to post a reply, although there is absolutely no reason you can’t if you wish. It’s important to understand the root and origin of one’s beliefs, emotions, reactions, and thoughts.

    I love this country and I love my God. I’m free to associate with anyone just as those that may hold different beliefs are free to associate with whomever they please. If you choose to hate me because of my beliefs, I will choose to continue to love you as my neighbor. Please keep in mind that love does not equal agreement.

    June 3, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
    • snowboarder

      of course they have the right of free association. that also affords them the responsibility of their actions and the scorn for their irrational discrimination.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
    • Average American

      I would argue that having and understanding a belief system to the point it can be applied to daily life is a very predictable, rational and logical method to use to discern which choice to make in life. If someone formulates an idea or opinion from a standpoint of no laws and no absolutes, that seems to me to be a very unsteady foundation from which to make a decision.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
  10. Doc Vestibule

    o GOD HATES LEFT HANDED PEOPLE
    You have a choice not to act on your wicked left-handedness and live a godly life!
    "A wise man's heart is at his right hand; but a fool's heart at his left."
    – Ecclesiastes 10:2
    "The right hand of the lord doeth valiantly, the right hand of the lord is exalted."
    – Psalm 118 vv15,16
    Those who know and follow the true word of Christ will be laughing from up in heaven while you lefties fry forever.
    Better start using that right hand before Judgement day or you'll be sorry!

    June 3, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
  11. Let me guess

    Robert sounds like Nice try sounds like billfitt sounds like stupidity in full bloom.

    June 3, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
  12. Mark

    Good... the less my kids are exposed to "baptists" and the "baptist agenda", the happier I will be.

    June 3, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
  13. Concerned Citizen

    Good riddance!

    June 3, 2013 at 4:11 pm |
  14. Beancounter

    Southern Baptists are cut from the same whole cloth as the Taliban. These extremists pick & choose the pieces of the scripture they wish to follow, while ignoring the rest. Hypocrites and deadenders, steadfastly on the path to irrelevance.

    June 3, 2013 at 4:05 pm |
    • Robert

      Baptists just don't want to send their sons out with people who want to sodomize them. If you don't mind people sodomizing you son then perhaps you should send your boys on camping trips with NAMBLA, another gay rights group.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      or send them to catholic school/church if you want them sodomized properly...

      June 3, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
    • Roger

      That Robert doesn't know the different between gays, NAMBLA, etc. is quite helpful in illuminating why others of his ilk are stuck in time – as in a cave.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Robert
      What about lesbians?
      And I hope you realize that the pathology of a pedophile is different than that of a ho/mose.xual.
      Child molesters cannot be meaningfully described as hom.ose.xuals, heterose.xuals, or bise.xuals (in the usual sense of those terms) because they are not really capable of a relationship with an adult man or woman. Instead of gender, their se.xual attractions are based primarily on age. These individuals – who are often characterized as fixated – are attracted to children, not to men or women.
      Perpetrators with a more or less exclusive interest in children are labeled fixated. Fixation means "a temporary or permanent arrestment of psychological maturation resulting from unresolved formative issues which persist and underlie the organization of subsequent phases of development".
      By contrast, other molesters are described as regressed. Regression is "a temporary or permanent appearance of primitive behavior after more mature forms of expression had been attained, regardless of whether the immature behavior was actually manifested earlier in the individual's development".
      Doctors Groth and Birnbaum studied 175 adult males who were convicted in Massachusetts of se.xual assault against a child. None of the men had an exclusively ho.mos.exual adult se.xual orientation. 83 (47%) were classified as "fixated;" 70 others (40%) were classified as regressed adult heterose.xuals; the remaining 22 (13%) were classified as regressed adult bise.xuals. Of the last group, Groth and Birnbaum observed that "in their adult relationships they engaged in s.ex on occasion with men as well as with women. However, in no case did this attraction to men exceed their preference for women....There were no men who were primarily se.xually attracted to other adult males..."

      June 3, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
    • Robert (the smart one)

      Robert, you realize that these are, for the most part, children? And you are clueless as to the differences between "gay" and "pedophile", but I see you are well versed in what NAMBLA is, you asshat.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
  15. Ed

    Let the Baptists leave I for one won't miss them!

    June 3, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • Nice Try

      The only people who won't miss God is the Devil. Have fun with Lucifer...

      June 3, 2013 at 4:05 pm |
    • Beancounter

      Sounds good ... Lucifer is a lot more fun than stick-in-mud Southern Baptists.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Lucifer is not the name of their fictional devil... christians should know that, but they don't... their book has been rewritten, mistranslated, cheesy movied and so on for so long... but it's "god's" word.... hahaha...

      June 3, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Nice Try: If by the VERY slightest of chances we are wrong and you are right, I wouldn't want to be anywhere near people who think the way you do...what a boring sadistic fantasy world you live in...I can't imagine being so hateful.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Nice Try, did I miss your conclusive proof that your imaginary friend actually exists?

      June 3, 2013 at 7:39 pm |
  16. 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 3:51 pm |
    • Casey

      Mama – Well said!

      June 3, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
    • Thomas Jefferson

      Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, imprisoned; yet we have not advanced one inch towards uniformity. What has been the effect of coercion? To make one half the world fools, and the other half hypocrites. To support roguery and error all over the earth.

      (from Notes on the State of Virginia, 1785)

      June 3, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      faithy: How many times do we need to explain this to you?? We are not Nazi's and we are not god haters. We can't hate something that we don't believe exists.
      Do you hate Santa?
      And yes, most of us who are not bigoted and hateful, support same sex marriage because we understand that it doesn't harm society and we understand that they too pay taxes and thus are deserving of equal rights.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Robert

      You make no sense, like every anti-theist who has ever opened his mouth preaching his hatred of religion.

      The Bible, both Old and New Testament say sodomy is sin. And, contrary to your false claims, there is no evidence the desire to sodomize is genetic. NO fet-ish is genetic. There would have to be many thousands of fet_ish genes and they simply don't exist.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      robert
      Eating shellfish is a sin, working on the sabbath is a sin, a woman speaking in church is a sin, on and on and on and on and on and on and on.

      The bible is full of crap. Science has shown how false the bible is, still believing in it is to ignore everything that we have learned since it was CREATED by men along with your god.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
    • Thatguy100

      ROBERT:

      No, you don't get to do that. It's like hitting me with your dad's baseball bat, and when i take it and throw it in the woods, you get mad and say "Hey, be respectful, that was my dad's!". Religion bludgeon's people with it's faith claims and preaches that we, not just gays, but everyone, are sad evil little monsters who deserve hell and can only be saved by (Insert prophet/savior here. in many cases, Jesus).

      Gays have every right that straight people have in this country, as per the declaration of equality that any rational person endorses. If you truly believe you can deny someone this based on your personal religious beliefs, go to the Middle East and see how well theocratic rule works for you.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • mama k

      There is no evidence that left-handedness is genetic, either Robert – get a clue. Try looking at the latest research on epi-genetics factors (very early in development and change-resistant) that are published in the Quarterly Review of Biology). Ignoring science while expressing conflicted Christian beliefs is getting you nowhere fast.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      Robert: See the buybull does not have any bearing in the real world or the making of any laws and we have scientific evidence to show how horribly wrong it is. Sodomy occurs between men and women also. The buybull says that a raped girl must marry her rapist-do you agree with this also? It also speaks of stoning children-how about this one? How you toss away the OT when the commandments you swear you follow are in that?

      June 3, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Saraswati

      I don't know that you can really expect some of these people to understand the ongoing research. Anyone who is going on about silly things like the fact there are no "gay genes" is so many years behind modern scientific understanding that nothing you say here is going to catch them up. We probably shouldnt be handing out high school diplomas to people who don't have even a basic understanding of epigenetics and polygenic determinism, but that's a whole other issue.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
  17. Jamie

    Praise God.

    June 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • sam stone

      or he will fry you forever

      June 3, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
    • Nice Try

      Athy... Proverbs 10:18 – He that uttereth a slander, is a fool.

      Matthew 12:26 – But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      LET's Religiosity Law #3 – If you habitually spout off verses from your "holy" book to make whatever inane point you're trying to make, and not once does it occur to you to question whether your book is accurate in the first place, then you are definitely mentally retarded. (See Law #4 & #5)

      June 3, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
  18. kenny

    its so funny how religious people pick and choose which rules to follow in the bible when it's COMPLETELY FULL OF CONTRADICTIONS... there's 1 line about being gay and a 100 that contradict it yet you fools all seem obsessed over that one line... makes me wonder...

    June 3, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
    • Jesus

      I always preferred the company of the guys.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
    • faith

      liar

      June 3, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      They don't call it the Giant Book of Multiple Choice for no reason. 🙂

      June 3, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
  19. Ol' Yeller

    I have read these posts and am amazed at the ignorance of some of the folks on here. Not really, I guess... but it never ceases to amaze me that the utter delusion of some of these people who rely on faith and faith alone. They do not study anything outside the realms of what they have been told and indoctrinated to. Then they expect someone with obvious education, knowledge, and intellectual curiosity to drop the argument because the book they've never read (but has been read to them... parts anyway) says something; which obviously makes it true... therefore they win the argument!
    Can anyone name one instance... just one, where science has butted up against religion (i.e. the Bible) which resulted in science ultimatley being proven wrong? I can name several where religion had to change their core message due to overwhelming evidence being discovered... And not once did religion acknowledge the decades of defense (including prison and the torturing 'of heretics') of their beliefs (and that is ALL they are.... beliefs)

    June 3, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
  20. scieng1

    I wonder. If a liberal choses to have an abortion, is she bigoted? If an atheist choses not to go to a church, is he bigoted? If you have a wedding and only invite certain guests, are you bigoted? If you fill a job with a qualified person, are you bigoted against an unqualified one? If not, then why is a church deciding what organizations it allows to meet inside it an act of bigotry? Making choices to support your beliefs is not bigotry. Bigotry involves hatred, which is not in question here.

    June 3, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • Saraswati

      the way the term bigoted is usually used is well stated in the OED:

      "having or revealing an obstinate belief in the superiority of one’s own opinions and a prejudiced intolerance of the opinions of others:
      a bigoted group of reactionaries
      a thoughtless and bigoted article"

      In order to be "bigoted" your hold opinions that are obstinate, prejudiced and intolerant. Actions are not in and of themselves opinions, though they may reflect them. But an opinion is not in itself bigoted. One might hold an opinion but with a mind open to change, with knowledge acquired through open, unprejudiced investigation and with an acceptance of the difference of opinion so long as those opinions are not in themselves dangerous or biased and closed minded. So no, you cases do not generally contain any examples that could be identified as "bigoted". Bigotry is a lot more than holding an opinion.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • Jeff

      A group of people are being excluded based on their orientation. It most certainly is bigotry. Next, you're going to try and sell me that "separate but equal" wasn't bigotry.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:12 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.