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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. Secular Humanist from Ohio

    There is no integrity in stealing names. Any m0r0n can do that. What's your point? You make yourself look ridiculous.

    June 1, 2013 at 10:06 pm |
  2. BOb the Prairie Dog

    Typical Christians. Using little boys to fight their morality war... then raping them behind the altar after mass.

    June 1, 2013 at 10:05 pm |
    • Hilton Dickinson

      Your ignorance differing Christians from Catholics is profound. Two groups claiming Jesus Christ as Lord ( of which He is – you might wanna look into that) anywho, long story short, He (Jesus) already stated not everyone who calls Him Lord shall enter into heaven. He knows what's in every man's heart. And now we know what's in yours.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:09 pm |
    • jazz guitar man

      Hilton, it appears you lack faith in your own religious views. You are so arrogant you make it sound like your religious views are a FACT. Sorry they are not, since religion is based on FAITH. If you had more faith in your POV and how it relates to you, you wouldn't see the need to be so arrogant and assume your FAITH is a FACT.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:14 pm |
    • JR

      Hilton Dickinson,
      Catholics ARE Christians; if you don't know that, you need a refresher course on Christianity, and should not be spouting off about anyone else's so-called "ignorance". You, sir, are a religious bigot. Grow up.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:22 pm |
    • Hilton Dickinson

      My faith jazz has never been stronger, I'm sorry that you perceive my faith as arrogance. But it is a truth.. Case in point, if you were Moses coming down from the mount, stone tablets n all, could there be a single person on this planet to convince you personally otherwise that you had not heard, from God Almighty Himself ? I would surely hope not. So here we go back to grass roots. I strongly believe what I do (no I don't need the tablets, I found Him on my own.) it's not arrogance man, it's just truth. Or in your words "fact". But I pray that He moves on your heart as He did mine. And "jr" you need to do your homework bro. There are a lot of Catholics, Methodists, baptists, so on and so on that are not Christians. It's a personal relationship with Jesus Christ out creator that makes us so. Sadly enough a lot of them do for show.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
    • Athy

      Jesus Christ is our creator now? So until Jesus came there was no one else around? Man, this going by a little too fast for me.

      June 1, 2013 at 11:11 pm |
    • Non believer

      Moses was a myth.
      He wrote nothing.
      There was no Exodus.
      Grow up.

      June 2, 2013 at 1:29 am |
    • Non believer

      Their "relationship" is with a figment of their imagination.

      June 2, 2013 at 1:31 am |
  3. mama k

    A recent poster wrote that God hates the sin of homosexuality.

    Religions that agree with the poster's statement claim such a notion as an absolute moral truth. We know such notions are founded in ancient writings from millennia past. For many things we have learned about through science, beliefs have had to adapt to keep from looking silly and being out of date with current knowledge. This is simply another time where fundamental religions are struggling to keep up with current knowledge and throwing a hissy fit about the discomforting situation they find themselves in.

    We know that homosexuality has always been a naturally occurring feature across many species including mankind, and science is now getting closer and closer to answers on how it survives across generations. Now that the scientific research shows that homosexuality is not a choice, but formed very early via epigenetic factors (resistant to change), religions that abhor homosexuality look sillier than ever on the issue. For Christians in particular, I would also say their wildly conflicting Biblical interpretations regarding a wide array of topics including this one is just another indicator that their objective truths are anything but objective.

    June 1, 2013 at 10:04 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 1, 2013 at 10:04 pm |
    • Mark

      It would appear "you know" nothing.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:06 pm |

    • One sect calls homosexuality an abomination while the next one (over 4,000,000 members) in the same denomination is already performing gay marriage. One sect, the Westboro Baptist Church believes Americans are being killed at war because America is too kind to "fags". Many of these sects are equally divergent on the roles of women in society.

      One sect believes that Jesus and Satan were brothers and that Christ will return to Jerusalem AND Jackson County, Missouri. Some believe the Pope is the Antichrist. Some believe Obama is the Antichrist.

      Some believe that celibacy is the only option for certain people, or for people in certain positions. Many of the people from these same institutions advocate against abortion, but pretend not to understand the realistic benefit of the morning after pill or even basic contraception; their unrealistic wishful thinking is causing the death of many at the hands of disease.

      Recently we learned from CNN of a child dying when their parents, members of a Christian sect in Philadelphia, as part of their faith, refused medical care. When incidents like the subject of this article come to light, many Christians are only too ready to try explain how another Christian's interpretation of ancient "scripture" is not quite right.

      Conflicted right from the start, Christianity continues to splinter, creating more and more extreme divisions, with each division trying to assert itself as some true messenger of the word of the Christian God.

      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.

      (Thomas Jefferson, from Notes on the State of Virginia, 1785)

      June 1, 2013 at 10:06 pm |
    • mama k

      Well, Mark, you have a golden opportunity to express yourself. Cat got your tongue?

      June 1, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
    • God behaves mysterious way

      God hates the sin of hom ose xuality, but not hom ose xuals.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:10 pm |
    • Austin

      Note the following: First, Christians should judge one another (1 Corinthians 5:12-13; John 7:24). Second, the Lord did not condone this woman’s sin. He commanded her to “go thy way; from henceforth sin no more” (John 8:11). Third, Jesus revealed the hypocrisy of the accusers who were more interested in ensnaring the Lord than preserving holiness in their community (cf. Mark 7:1-13). And where was the man who also was caught in “the act of adultery” (cf. Leviticus 20:10)? Fourth, Jesus respected the Mosaic law that prohibited adultery and the punishment that the law prescribed. He also regarded the laws of accusation and testimony, which may not have been satisfied in this case. Fifth, the Son of God had the right to forgive sins (cf. Mark 2:10). The response to this situation by Jesus, the Son of God, was not designed to insulate wicked and impenitent individuals from rebuke or discipline in the Christian Age.
      Some of the sayings on sin by Jesus are perplexing. He said on one occasion, “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no excuse for their sin” (John 15:22). Did Jesus mean that the Jews would not have been in sin had he not come? Would they have been better off had he not come?

      June 1, 2013 at 10:11 pm |
    • mama k

      You may have just as well quoted scripture. With the knowledge we have today, Christians need to come to the table for issues such as this prepared to discuss them rationally or face an ever increasing tide of distrust and indictment of irrelevancy.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:13 pm |
    • mama k

      ( and an indictment )

      June 1, 2013 at 10:14 pm |
    • mama k

      LOL. Austin right on cue. I guess some scripture had to find its way there eventually. lol

      June 1, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
    • Love Unconditionally

      Ah, that's where you're wrong, God behaves mysterious way, He knows tons more about it because He created them that way than the bigots who discriminate feeling they are far superior beings on Earth possessing immaculate sin. But if you actually believe what you wrote, here's something else you should also read.

      Whosoever: Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin
      http://whosoever.org/v6i6/cindy.html

      June 1, 2013 at 10:21 pm |
  4. Austin

    Note the following: First, Christians should judge one another (1 Corinthians 5:12-13; John 7:24). Second, the Lord did not condone this woman’s sin. He commanded her to “go thy way; from henceforth sin no more” (John 8:11). Third, Jesus revealed the hypocrisy of the accusers who were more interested in ensnaring the Lord than preserving holiness in their community (cf. Mark 7:1-13). And where was the man who also was caught in “the act of adultery” (cf. Leviticus 20:10)? Fourth, Jesus respected the Mosaic law that prohibited adultery and the punishment that the law prescribed. He also regarded the laws of accusation and testimony, which may not have been satisfied in this case. Fifth, the Son of God had the right to forgive sins (cf. Mark 2:10). The response to this situation by Jesus, the Son of God, was not designed to insulate wicked and impenitent individuals from rebuke or discipline in the Christian Age.
    Some of the sayings on sin by Jesus are pe.rplexing. He said on one occasion, “If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no excuse for their sin” (John 15:22). Did Jesus mean that the Jews would not have been in sin had he not come? Would they have been better off had he not come?

    June 1, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
    • Austin

      Justin Jackson .....citation

      June 1, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • ericpone

      You are cherry picking verses and taking them wildly out of context. Leviticus is a series of redacted holiness codes geared toward differing groups. The book has many contradictions in it. You then quote Paul who was ok with Slavery and keeping women subjugated! Neither of these values are tolerated now but.. are you ok with bringing that back too? Do you like fabrics, hamburgers with cheese, drinking from uncovered cups, eating brats and ribs? How do you feel about sending mom out into the backyard during her period? The bible condones genocide to rid a land of enemies are you ok with that too? God is like the wind always moving, always creating. We are in no position to think that we could in any way challenge God's creation or to assume that God is on one side or another or that we have an understanding God's 'agenda'. In Isaiah alone God supports Israel, then turns against them and supports an unbelieving pagan to explain why Israel was sent away from the land. Give God some credit and love people even those who are different from you.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:16 pm |
  5. Dennis Lurvey

    Christian number are shrinking all over the world except the rice paddies of China and the illiterate natives in Africa. No one is buying what they are selling. What are they afraid of? Isnt their "job" in the world to convert people? Moreover if Christianity was so great why arent people attracted to it by choice instead of being born into it/forced to stay in it by family. No one ever reads the bible for the first time in adulthood and says "why I can see where all that could happen"?

    June 1, 2013 at 10:00 pm |
    • Mark

      Your "facts" are faulty. No one becomes a Christian via osmosis. Christianity is a choice ........ just like sin.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:04 pm |
    • BOb the Prairie Dog

      If Religion was forbidden to be taught to persons under 18 (which it should be), Christianity would be extinct within a generation.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • jazz guitar man

      Mark; It is very hard to believe that one's relgion is a choice when the vast majority of people have the same religion as their parents. e.g. if a muslim born to muslim parents in a muslim country was instead born to christian parents in a christian country, what are the odds that person would still be muslim? 1 in a million! The same is true for christians and all other religions.

      How can anyone with a basic understanding of logic say this is a choice.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:19 pm |
  6. jazz guitar man

    No organization should be tax exempt. We see the stuf the IRS was doing. This is what occurs when those in an administation (both parties), are allowed what group is or isn't legit (as it relates to the complex tax laws). So the best way to ensure fairness is to tax them all.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
  7. Rick

    To a gay person, the Truth is unsettling. Otherwise they wouldn't be arguing about it so much.

    If you don't believe in what the Bible says, then enjoy the fruits of your sin, for a season.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:54 pm |
    • jazz guitar man

      Rick, is it really the gays that are arguing? To me it looks like it is the religious that are upset that the BSA changed THEIR policy. Anyhow, that message of yours wasn't one of love, was it.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:00 pm |
    • JR

      Lol. Keep telling yourself that, and enjoy your eternity spent explaining why you were intolerant of ALL of God's creations. Emulate Jesus; he said nothing about gays.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
    • midwest rail

      To a believer, disagreement is very unsettling. Otherwise, they wouldn't argue about it so much.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • Nice Try

      JR.... Learn some truth and stop telling lies. Jesus is the Word. And the Word of God says plenty about gays...

      June 1, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
    • Nice Try

      midwest rall… Your argument is not supported by truth…

      June 1, 2013 at 10:09 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Because you say so ? Mine is no less true than the original post.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:12 pm |
    • Arthur Bryant

      The concept of "sin" was invented by the ruling classes to keep the lower classes in line. It doesn't exist. No doubt you'd be all for teaching the (somewhere around) 1500 species of animals other than humans who engage in ho.mose.xual activity how to stop sinning because surely god didn't make them that way. Let us know when you've figured out how.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:50 pm |
  8. RichardSRussell

    Remember why there's a denomination called SOUTHERN Baptists in the first place? It's because their "infallible" Bible also assured them back in the 1850s that they needed to stand up for slavery, just like God intended, so they split off from the national organization in order to be free to practice their bigotry without a discouraging word. 160 years later, same story.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
    • Mark

      Still pointing to the past? The party of Lincoln freed the slaves. The democrats supported slavery.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:57 pm |
    • Billy

      Do you also juggle apples and oranges, Mark?

      June 1, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
  9. mama k

    A recent poster wrote that God hates the sin of homosexuality.

    Religions that agree with the poster's statement claim such a notion as an absolute moral truth. We know such notions are founded in ancient writings from millennia past. For many things we have learned about through science, beliefs have had to adapt to keep from looking silly and being out of date with current knowledge. This is simply another time where fundamental religions are struggling to keep up with current knowledge and throwing a hissy fit about the discomforting situation they find themselves in.

    We know that homosexuality has always been a naturally occurring feature across many species including mankind, and science is now getting closer and closer to answers on how it survives across generations. Now that the scientific research shows that homosexuality is not a choice, but formed very early via epigenetic factors (resistant to change), religions that abhor homosexuality look sillier than ever on the issue. For Christians in particular, I would also say their wildly conflicting Biblical interpretations regarding a wide array of topics including this one is just another indicator that their objective truths are anything but objective.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
    • mama k

      Although I can't explain the fact that humans and "other species" is not the same thing. By the way, I am an older lesbian who has had numerous relationships that have all failed. My relationship with my mother was awful. That is why I decided to become a lesbian.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
    • Mark

      Spare us your pseudo-intellectual rants.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:52 pm |
    • Alias

      If you actually decided to become a lesbian, you are bisexual.
      And you lose use of words will only add to the bigots' rants.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:54 pm |
    • mama k

      @faker: Nice try name-stealer. Lol. By the way, it's "are not the same thing", dolt. You obviously don't know the first thing about me; lol.

      @Mark: Very descriptive. So exactly what was the problem?

      June 1, 2013 at 9:56 pm |
    • mama k

      Allias: "And you lose use of words "

      Hello! Can I get some English here?? lol

      June 1, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
    • kithill

      Show your research! <>

      This is a nice fantasy. Show how it works for right/left handed-ness. No real geneticist will support your claim.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:13 pm |
    • mama k

      Not my research, but real, nonetheless. See the next page up (big reply inside big post) – comes from Quarterly Review of Biology.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
  10. Zon

    Don't let the door hit you on your way out.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
  11. jimkon

    Us gays love ourselves.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
    • Nice Try

      Lucifer loves you too. He even has a homecoming partying waiting for you in hell...

      June 1, 2013 at 9:48 pm |
  12. Bayley0402

    You can always count on those Christian baptists to do the right thing. Claim to be a CHRISTIAN and then hate anyone who is different from them.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:42 pm |
    • jimkon

      Although I guess Jesus hated sin too. Ooops!

      June 1, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
    • Austin

      Thats strange............what do you mean "different"?

      June 1, 2013 at 9:45 pm |
    • oneSTARman

      The ONLY thing that Jesus ever wrote was 'something or other' in the SAND while he waited for someone without SIN to throw the first Stone

      June 1, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
    • Nice Try

      We don't hate people for being different than us. We just hate whoever God hates...

      June 1, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      NiceTry: And, by amazing coincidence, God always decides to hate exactly who you ALREADY hate. Convenient, eh?

      June 1, 2013 at 9:55 pm |
    • Alias

      Jeus told you to love you enemy and love your neighbor.
      God loves everyone, baptists hate gays.
      That is not what your bible tells you to do!

      June 1, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
    • Nice Try

      Richard… Some people will say anything to keep from recognizing the truth. And that nonsense you just stated is a perfect example of that. God was in the beginning. I wasn't. God is the one who made the rules. I didn't. So I don't know how you came up with the crazy idea that God is somehow influenced by whom I hate…

      June 1, 2013 at 10:04 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ Nice Try

      We don't hate people for being different than us. We just hate whoever God hates...

      At least you admit that your god and his sheeple are a bunch of haters.

      June 2, 2013 at 1:37 am |
  13. oneSTARman

    EXODUS – Now if we could only get the Baptist to March into the Sea which they DEMAND Part Before Them.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:41 pm |
    • Another One

      And speaking of Exodus, here is another great story! Gotta love it!

      Truth Wins Out – Exodus International: http://www.truthwinsout.org/ministry-exodus-international/

      June 1, 2013 at 10:08 pm |
  14. Ron

    Christians care about what God wants. Non believers care about what man wants, and whatever current agenda man is pushing. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. God does NOT change, men do. This behavior has been condemned by God and always will be. Repent, and receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and you will know His peace, and will not be so concerned about what others think, but you will want to do what pleases the Lord. God Bless

    June 1, 2013 at 9:40 pm |
    • bj

      Amen. Thank you & good night.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:41 pm |
    • JR

      Jesus Christ never said one word about gays. Not one.
      Emulate Jesus Christ and remember Mathew 7.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:44 pm |
    • Athy

      Ron, that's just plain bullshit.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:47 pm |
    • Ron

      JR, Jesus always pointed to the law and the prophets as having been given by God. What do they have to say about it? "It is an abomination for a man to lie with another man as he would lie with a woman" ...Leviticus And the Spirit through the Apostle Paul is clear: Those who practice such things will NOT inherit the kingdom of God. ...I Corinthians 6:9

      June 1, 2013 at 9:48 pm |
    • Austin

      He tackled about immorality and repentance for sure. And no where did hey say, it's ok be proud and embrace your sin.

      Not complicated in realizing what immorality is .

      June 1, 2013 at 9:50 pm |
    • Nice Try

      JR… From Genesis to Revelation, the whole bible is the word of God. And Jesus is the name of that God who inspired the bible to be written. Thus, every scripture came directly from Jesus. Even more, Jesus is that Word. You cannot separate the Word from Jesus. Learn some truth…

      John 1:4 – And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
    • jazz guitar man

      Ron, why would I wish to listen to someone that believes in myths. Can't you accept that what what you are saying is based on FAITH. Ok, you believe it. I get that. Why can't you accept that others do NOT share your faith.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
  15. Cindy

    What a shame. My grandson is a Boy Scout and he loves it. I can't see him leaving Boy Scouting over this issue. Most kids don't even understand the gay issue for many years. The Boy Scouts are a very valuable organization for young boys. By the way, my daughter is heavily involved in his troop and the parents are invited to go along on the camping trips, which she does. Parents should be majorly involved in any group their child/children belong to.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:39 pm |
    • eagander

      at five years of age, I didn't know what "gay" was nor the issues were at the time, but I knew I was "different". I was aware I was gay, I just didn't have a word for it. Kids know innately.

      June 1, 2013 at 10:14 pm |
    • Nice Try

      Cindy… If the Boys Scouts officially allows gays into it, then perhaps it is time for your grandson to leave. That is, unless you care nothing about him becoming gay. You also state "Most kids don't even understand the gay issue for many years." Understanding is not a prerequisite. A gay person has no problem with molesting another gay boy whether that boy understands it or not. When he grows up, he will then realize what has happened to him, but the damage will already be done. You as a parent or grandparent can help prevent it. Pull your grandson out now, before it is too late…

      June 1, 2013 at 10:15 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ Nice Try

      What a lying sack of shit you are. Everything in that post was a lie.

      Just another arrogant, hypocritical, bigoted christian.

      June 2, 2013 at 1:50 am |
  16. jazz guitar man

    Libsrtyrants: Tried to post, but this site will not let me now. Check out Randall Stephenson. He is on the BSA board and he was a key player in this policy change. (I cannot mention his company because they might be the reason my post was blocked).

    June 1, 2013 at 9:35 pm |
    • Rick

      Benny Hinn is not a Christian.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:52 pm |
  17. Fundies Gone Wild!!

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0-04VDrCbM&w=640&h=360]

    June 1, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
    • Mark

      Nice try, using some phoney like Hinds to characterize Christianity is really pathetic.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:49 pm |
  18. humtake

    It's a shame that so many Bible verses sprinkled throughout the Old and New Testament are ignored while others are followed so vehemetetly(sp?). The number of verses regarding slaves, the subserviance of wives, the offerings that are supposed to be given, etc. FAR outnumber any that deal with a man laying with a man or woman laying with a woman, yet you don't see Christians following those verses. It all just comes down to what gives people an illusion of power. Most verses tell what Christians should do so it becomes work and labor...so they ignore those. But when it comes to things you shouldn't do, Christians follow those easy because they take no work and it does not inconvenience them.

    Then they come up with the excuse that "Oh, those rules are in the Old Testament and Christians follow the New Testament"...yet one of the first things Christians teach in church is to follow the Ten Commandments...an Old Testament proposition. All religion is just a form of crowd control when introduce to masses. Each person needs to find their own faith.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:29 pm |
    • bj

      Show me the exact verse where God says he approves of slavery. 2) Slavery in the OT era was not race-based like the modern-17th and 18th century practices. God in the OT forbid kidnapping (which is how modern slavery flourished)...God forbid it....and forbid abuse of 'indentured ' servants. So, YOU LIED...just admit it and we can move on. YOU lied and keep lying.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:36 pm |
    • jimkon

      Let us all follow God’s teachings on morality: if a man discovers on his wedding night that his bride is not a virgin, he must stone her to death on her father’s doorstep (Deuteronomy 22:13-21).

      June 1, 2013 at 9:38 pm |
    • bj

      " Find their own faith? ? what the heck for? I want reality (Man is sinful) not fantasy: the universe cane from nothing and cows are sacred. What good is faith ? Santa's okay for a 3 year old but if man is evil in his heartl, fallen, broken and God reached down to help us and to guide us, I want the truth and reality. You can keep your faith (in the fantasy of something out of nothing, in liberalism and socialism and Obama's honesty) My faith is the belief and confidence in a holy God who HAS revealed Himself in creation and in His word and Son. Your faith is magickal child like wishfulness.... You found your own in your own mind. You are your own god, aren't you?

      June 1, 2013 at 9:40 pm |
    • Psalms 137:9

      Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:41 pm |
    • Jabo

      The main problem would be solved with out religion if Gay males would join the girl Scouts and gay females would join the boy scouts. Then you won't have the problem of gays hitting on straights. This is the main objection. unwanted advances.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ Jabo

      Gays don't hit on straights, doofus. Keep your paranoia to yourself.

      June 2, 2013 at 1:53 am |
  19. Scott

    I'm sick and tired of pastors, priests, and other religious leaders using religion as a way to push their political and moral agenda. I'm sorry people, but the Bible, to me, is a guideline, and all guidelines, like laws, must change with the times. My God is al loving and hates no one and excludes no one. And if the REALLY want to take the Bible literally, let's go back to stoning people to death for masturbation and adultery. The Bible says that these are sins and are punishable by death, but you don't hear them trying to force that garbage down our throats.

    It kills me that here we are in the 21st century and people are still trying to use religion to keep spreading hate. This is the way that people like Hitler rose to power by using the pulpit to spread hate and fear. I thought we were more evolved than that. Sad, very sad.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
    • jimkon

      If existed, Jesus would love you.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:30 pm |
    • Kieth T. Maxwell

      It's why you always take two Baptists fishing with you.... If you just take one, he'll drink all your beer. But, if you take two, they'll just sit there watching each other.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:33 pm |
    • bluebird

      Scott – its a choice. Some faith based organizations will choose and have chosen to support this policy change while others have chosen not to support it. They have their reasons and others have your similar reasons. You perpetuate the divide when you say that you're tired of religious groups using "religion" to push their political or moral agenda. The fact is we all have beliefs/faith that we use as a moral compass and if we say all those that do not believe in my beliefs are to be hated then "hate" will continue to exist. Watching one of the so-called "religious" baptist organizations protest the death of a 9 year old child last week from the tornado shows us all that "religion" can be masked in many forms but faith is something we should all recognize as acceptable to everyone. Some have faith that there is no God, others believe there is only one true God in Heaven.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:51 pm |
  20. jimkon

    Why is religion such a potent source of violence? There is no other sphere of discourse in which human beings so fully articulate their differences from one another, or cast these differences in terms of everlasting rewards and punishments. Religion is the one endeavor in which us–them thinking achieves a transcendent significance. If you really believe that calling God by the right name can spell the difference between eternal happiness and eternal suffering, then it becomes quite reasonable to treat heretics and unbelievers rather badly. The stakes of our religious differences are immeasurably higher than those born of mere tribalism, racism, or politics.

    June 1, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
    • bj

      "Religion' is not violent. Man is and in particular Extremist Muslims. Stop the spread of ignorant hate against Christians. it is truly ugly and intolerant.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
    • jazz guitar man

      BJ, you need to accept that there are Christians that are full of hate. They openly hate many groups. I don't hate religious people expect when they try to pass laws that restrict freedom.

      Freedom was enhanced by the BSA policy (a decision made by a private organization). Those that don't agree are FREE to form their own group. I say a Win \ Win for all.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
    • JR

      Religious bigots such as bj are the abomination, not gay people. You are ugly and intolerant yourself, hypocrite.

      June 1, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
    • Doobs

      @ bj

      Here's a lovely quote from a christian on this page:

      Nice Try

      We don't hate people for being different than us. We just hate whoever God hates...

      June 1, 2013 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |

      And you have the gall to accuse another religion of hate? You all hate anyone who isn't just like you.

      June 2, 2013 at 2:00 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.