Conservatives brace for `marriage revolution'
Conservative Christians say their churches have been unprepared for cultural shifts on same-sex marriage.
June 28th, 2013
06:19 PM ET

Conservatives brace for `marriage revolution'

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) - With its ivy-covered entrance and Teddy Bear bouquets, Arlene’s Flowers seems an unlikely spot to trigger a culture-war skirmish.

Until recently, the Richland, Washington, shop was better known for its artistic arrangements than its stance on same-sex marriage.

But in March, Barronelle Stutzman, the shop’s 68-year-old proprietress, refused to provide wedding flowers for a longtime customer who was marrying his partner. Washington state legalized same-sex marriage in December.

An ardent evangelical, Stutzman said she agonized over the decision but couldn’t support a wedding that her faith forbids.

“I was not discriminating at all,” she said. “I never told him he couldn’t get married. I gave him recommendations for other flower shops.”

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson disagreed, and filed a consumer protection lawsuit against Arlene’s Flowers. The ACLU also sued on behalf of the customer, Robert Ingersoll, who has said Stutzman’s refusal “really hurt, because it was someone I knew.”

Among conservative Christians, Stutzman has become a byword - part cautionary tale and part cause celebre.

Websites call her a freedom fighter. Tributes fill Arlene’s Facebook page. Donations to her legal defense fund pour in from as far away as Texas and Arkansas.

“For some reason, her case has made a lot of people of faith worry,” said Stutzman’s lawyer, Dale Schowengerdt of the Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative legal group.

Those anxieties have only increased, conservative Christians say, since the Supreme Court struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act and opened the door to gay marriage in California.

Taking a line from Justice Antonin Scalia's sharp dissent, Southern Baptist scholar Albert Mohler said it’s only a matter of time "before the other shoe drops" – and the high court legalizes same-sex marriage from coast to coast.

“Christians will have to think hard — and fast — about these issues and our proper response,” Mohler wrote on Wednesday.

“We will have to learn an entire new set of missional skills as we seek to remain faithful to Christ in this fast-changing culture.”

His fellow Southern Baptist Russell Moore put the matter more succinctly.

“Same-sex marriage is coming to your community.”

`The debate is over'

Well before the Supreme Court’s rulings, many conservative Christians said they saw the writing - or the poll numbers - on the wall.

Survey after survey shows increasing support for same-sex marriage, especially among young Americans. That includes many religious believers.

Most Catholics and mainline Protestants, not to mention many Jews, support same-sex relationships, according to surveys. The bells of Washington National Cathedral pealed in celebration on Thursday.

Even among those who oppose gay marriage, many think it’s a losing battle.

Seventy percent of white evangelicals believe that legal recognition for gay nuptials is inevitable, according to a June poll by the Pew Research Center, though just 22 percent favor it.

“The gay marriage debate is over,” said Jonathan Merritt, an evangelical writer on faith and culture. “Statistically, all the numbers move in one direction.”

Young Christians have grown up in a far more diverse culture than their forebears, Merritt noted, and many have befriended gays and lesbians.

Pew found that more than 90 percent of Americans overall personally know someone who is gay or lesbian, a 30 percent increase since 1993.

“It’s far easier to wage war against an agenda than it is to battle a friend,” Merritt said.

At the same time, many conservative young Christians say they’re weary of the culture wars, and of seeing their communities labeled “judgmental.”

When Christian researchers at the Barna Group asked Americans aged 16-29 what words best describe Christianity, the top response was “anti-homosexual.” That was true of more than 90 percent of non-Christians and 80 percent of churchgoers, according to Barna.

Tired of being told the country is slouching toward Gomorrah, many young Christians have simply tuned out the angry prophets of earlier generations, evangelical leaders say.

“The shrill angry voices of retrenchment are no longer getting a broad hearing either in the culture at large or in the evangelical community,” Merritt said.

But the battle over same-sex marriage is far from over, said Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage.

“I don’t believe most Christians are going to give up the fight,” said Brown, who is Catholic. He said his movement includes many young evangelical and Orthodox Christians.

“And they are more energized than ever.”

Love thy gay neighbors

Energized or not, conservative Christians must prepare for the moral dilemmas posed by the country’s growing acceptance of same-sex marriage, said Moore, the new president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.

“Is Your Church Ready for the Marriage Revolution?” Moore asked, while promoting a special session on homosexuality at the Southern Baptist Convention’s annual meeting in Houston in June.

Many evangelical pastors have seen homosexuality as a distant culture-war battle that’s fought far from the doors of the churches, Moore said.

Now, it’s as close as their front pews.

“I think it’s not so much that churches haven’t wanted to talk about it,” he said, “but they haven’t recognized how much the culture has changed around them.”

The first step, said Moore, is learning to defend traditional marriage without demonizing gays and lesbians.

Walking through Washington’s Union Station last Thursday, Moore said he saw several lesbian couples kissing in celebration of the Supreme Court rulings.

“If we can’t empathize with what’s going on in their hearts and minds, we’re not going to be able to love and respect them.”

Then come a host of secondary questions: How should conservative pastors minister to same-sex couples? Should Christians attend same-sex weddings? Should florists like Barronelle Stutzman's agree to work with gay couples?

`Don't give in' 

Florist Barronelle Stutzman.

In the 17 years she’s owned Arlene’s Flowers, Stutzman said, she’s worked with a number of gay colleagues.

“It really didn’t matter if they were gay, or blue or green, if they were creative and could do the job,” she said.

Stutzman suspects that some of her eight children privately don’t agree with her on homosexuality, even as they publicly support her decision.

Online, Stutzman has been called a bigot, and worse.

She said she’s lost at least two weddings because of her refusal to provide services for the same-sex marriage.

Conservative activists say her case is the first of what will surely be many more, as gay marriage spreads across the country.

As she gets ready to face a judge, the silver-haired florist offered some advice for fellow evangelicals.

“Don’t give in. If you have to go down for Christ, what better person to go down for?”

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Baptist • Belief • Christianity • Church • Culture wars • Discrimination • Faith • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Homosexuality • Politics • Religious liberty • Same-sex marriage

soundoff (5,210 Responses)
  1. Rainer Braendlein

    The broad acceptance of gay lifestyle in the Western societies is clear a indicator for the fact that many Westerners have completely forsaken their "dwelling" in God. Not the gayness or gay lifestyle in itself is the worst thing but the fact that we have forsaken the God who has made heaven and earth (this is a loving God who only seeks our well-being; he is not greedy to give us commands but only gives preserving commands).

    Let us imply that God is really the maker of heaven and earth then it is clear that he is the highest ruler of this universe, simply because it is his own universe, his property. He will not accept at least long-terms that some regions of this universe are not under his rule. Long-terms he will restore his overall rule.

    Currently every single human being can accept God's rule voluntarily. Yet, when time of grace is over, God will appear visibly, and subject everybody by use of violence (let us remember how Jesus cleaned up the Temple of Jerusalem).

    Although many people no more feel it, gayness is a confusion of se-xuality. We only don't perceive it as confusion because we have completely forsaken God's life-giving presence, and live under the control of the powers of death which give us ill thoughts.


    June 30, 2013 at 7:21 am |
    • a dose of reality

      Faith that could stand up to any form of reason is long gone. Our knowledge of the world from 2000 years ago to what we now know about the world has irrevocably changed the need for religion. We do not need God to explain things; and religion becomes obsolete as an explanation when it becomes optional or one among many different beliefs. We now see that the leap of faith is not just one leap; it is a leap repeatedly made, and a leap that becomes more difficult to take the more it is taken, reaching its pinnacle in blind allegiance and active denial and rejection of any other possibilities. At that point, the credibility of the faithful is entirely lost.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:26 am |
    • Jaggar

      The unfortunate fact is that many people don't believe in God. These people say they do but clearly, they don't. They throw around the word GOD like it means something to them, but it doesn't. Our country is no longer America that the forefathers assembled. It is a disgrace and sad. We are broke, broken, and no one cares.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:30 am |
    • sadlyperturbed

      The God that I know does not judge people for being the person he created them to be. The God that I know loves everyone regardless of who they are. The God that I know accepts others FOR their differences, not in spite of them. The God that I know loves all people, not just the ones that fit some small, perfect (I use that word very sarcastically) ideal. The God that I know does not make rules to be followed by his sheeple, but rather allows his/her people to be themselves, whatever that happens to be. The God that I know does not expect people to follow blindly a book written by MEN two thousand years ago as if it were his word and laws. The God that I know loves all, not some.

      I don't know who your hateful God is, but what I do know is that your God is not MY GOD.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:31 am |
    • Brian

      You do realize there are a growing group of Americans who don't believe in this book and are agnostic. Government should govern rules for ALL not just those that think they are right. Religion is for those who want to go to church.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:40 am |
    • One one

      "Currently every single human being can accept God's rule voluntarily. Yet, when time of grace is over, God will appear visibly, and subject everybody by use of violence (let us remember how Jesus cleaned up the Temple of Jerusalem)."

      How nice ! Your loving god will torture us for all eternity in that special torture chamber he created just for us.

      How many billions of people do you suppose god is torturing at this moment ? Certainly all the people he killed according to the bible. The bible says thou shall not kill. But all the people god killed must have been wicked so it was OK.

      But wait, didn't jesus say love your enemies ? I guess god changed his mind. Then he killed his son, which is really himself to lift the curse he put on us in the first place. He punished the innocent to absolve the "sins" of the "guilty". How's that for bible morality?

      June 30, 2013 at 7:43 am |
    • One one

      " (this is a loving God who only seeks our well-being"

      "God will appear visibly, and subject everybody by use of violence"

      You and your god seem to be confused.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:56 am |
  2. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    June 30, 2013 at 6:41 am |
    • a dose of reality

      still waiting for YOU to provide proof

      June 30, 2013 at 7:27 am |
    • Chuck

      Prayer didn't stop gay marriage did it?

      June 30, 2013 at 7:35 am |
    • drneutrino

      Tell that to the tens of thousands of children abused by priests just in the past 50 years. What if these extra special relationships have been going on in God's name for 2000 years? If you call that HEALTHY then you are a very sick human being.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:39 am |
    • Brian

      If prayer changed things, then gay marriage would have never been approved by the MAJORITY of americans.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:42 am |
  3. Saraswati

    "Stutzman suspects that some of her eight children privately don’t agree with her on hom.ose.xuality, even as they publicly support her decision."

    I think it's horrendously immoral that someone in this day and age would have 8 children, but I don't thin I should be allowed to deny her business services for a legal choice. Of course, if she sent that outrageous number of kids to public school I'd like most of my tax dollars back (unless they were adopted).

    June 30, 2013 at 6:40 am |
    • lol??

      Now you wanna tell people how many children to have. The Socie mind has no limits when it comes to bulllyin'! You marginalizing God??

      June 30, 2013 at 6:47 am |
    • a dose of reality

      lol??...please provide proof that there is a god. Or, please prove that zeus and Apollo do not exist and I'll use your method to prove your god does not exist

      June 30, 2013 at 7:29 am |
  4. lol??

    Akira sayz,
    "their marriages something else is still marginalizing them.........................."

    Poor me. I played HS futball. The PRO's marginalized me. WWWwaaaa WWWWwaaaaa

    June 30, 2013 at 6:26 am |
  5. Saraswati

    Christian groups already ban many people from marrying in their churches who can by the state laws, so it's rather odd that they make such a big deal out of this. The Catholics refuse marriage to many more people based on divorce stats than on se.xuality, yet no one goes on about this like it's the end of the world.

    June 30, 2013 at 6:15 am |
    • lol??

      Get this clear in yer brain. Churches or gubmints DON'T Marry people.

      God does the joining and the antichrist socies butted in with their regulatin'.

      June 30, 2013 at 6:29 am |
    • Science

      Morning Sara

      The Catholics...................and the couples they do marry...........have to spend big $$$$$$.for what the church requires

      in order to be married as a catholic ..................go figure ?

      Big money maker ............no god required.

      June 30, 2013 at 6:51 am |
    • a dose of reality

      lol??,,,get this through YOUR head....marriage is a LEGAL CONTRACT and NOTHING MORE. Did you get past the sixth grade?

      June 30, 2013 at 7:31 am |
    • Saraswati

      @dose, Lol??'s just trying to get a rise out of people. This is, sadly, how he gets his kicks. He's best ignored.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:35 am |
  6. lol??

    Akira sayz,
    "Therein lies the conundrum. According to these people, regardless who is the true and correct God, everyone else is deceived and will go to hell."

    This passes for thoughtful thinkin'??

    June 30, 2013 at 6:07 am |
    • a dose of reality

      There are many Atheists however who look down upon Christians as being inferior however because they have not made the leap of common sense and logic to understand that their God is a long perpetrated myth. In a sense it is akin to looking at a child who believes in Santa Clause. As adults we know full well he does not exist. The child hasn't grown up enough to shrug off the silly fantasy that has been fed to him/her to placate them. We see ourselves as the new grown-ups and you as the children placated by your Santa. We are urging you to grow out of that myth.

      The thing is, if you had met an Adult who still believed in Santa you would most likely treat them similarly. Think there's something fundamentally wrong with their sense of reality and wish to explain to them how ridiculous it is. The large difference here is in the fact that Christianity as a whole isn't so innocent as Santa. Christianity is guilty of so very many evil deeds in the name of God and the believers in Christianity are guilty of ignorance. Pretend for a second that the majority of people believed in Santa as a true fact and tried to force you to believe, coerce you to believe and judge you for not believing. This of course being the LEAST of what religions have done to people who don't believe them. You know Santa is a farce. You would be annoyed, angry, and feel like common sense had flown the coop.

      That is what Atheists are dealing with.

      All the logic, science, education and clear and obvious data about the world is purposefully ignored by theists and you swallow lies your whole lives, closed off to the possibility that you are wrong. We are not closed off to the possibility that we are wrong.. In fact, that's how most of us got to this stage of sanity. I was a believer who dared to question the "truth" of the gospels. When the answer to my questions were "pray about it" and "have faith" I needed to keep looking.

      We would be less angry if religions kept to themselves and stopped trying to dictate how others lived. If it stayed out of politics, we wouldn't be angry. If it stopped trying to tell people who aren't followers how to live their lives, we wouldn't care what you believed. If religions didn't cause untold millions of deaths, we would just simply giggle at your silly faith. That is not the case at all.

      You don't see us making cases against people who believe in Pagan faiths, we don't typically touch on Buddhism either. Because they don't try to control others. They do their thing and enjoy their beliefs without causing harm. You will never hear any of us speak out against Jainism for example. Never. They have a simple rule "above all, do no harm" and they follow it very closely. If your religion had that as the tenet and nothing else, we would be happy for you.

      Now please, if you don't mind, this is an Atheist page. However you arrived at this page I welcome you to leave it to go to your Theist pages that there are plenty of. OR you can stick around and learn, but keep your judgement to yourself, because we are here to have fun, learn, and laugh.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:32 am |
  7. dorothy

    You can tell a lot about a group by what they fight for in the courts. You have the religious right fighting for: 1. Power – so they can control the reproductive rights of women and who can and cannot marry. 2. Greed – so they can protect their worldly assets from lawsuits and taxes. 3. Perversion – so they can keep their pastors out of jail for illicit relations.

    On the other hand, the gays are fighting for: 1. Marriage – so they can live in legally recognized, monogamous relationships. 2. Family – so they can raise their children in a stable home as a couple. 3. Honor – so they can serve their country in the military.

    It is pretty clear which group has the more moral agenda. The religious right has lost all moral integrity and credibility.

    June 30, 2013 at 2:25 am |
    • tallulah13

      I think that history shows that religion has never been about morality. It's all about power.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:37 am |
    • Bootyfunk

      guilt, fear and ignorance are the pillars of religion.

      June 30, 2013 at 3:53 am |
    • Cuppa

      Did it ever occur to any of you that there are people with an interest in spirituality that actually support gay marriage? The words "religion" and "religious" are pretty broad terms.

      June 30, 2013 at 4:22 am |
    • Susan

      It also proves that morality stems from something universal that goes beyond religious bounds. So many think morality will be lost without religion.

      June 30, 2013 at 4:35 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      The religious can't step out of that box. Once you start questioning the belief, you are able to look at things from a different perspective. Religion offers false security.

      June 30, 2013 at 5:41 am |
    • LiarPrefails :-}

      If you really want to talk false, look at me totally unwanted in my own country, i lurk about this blog to show how important i really am . You can all recognize importance when you see it right?

      June 30, 2013 at 6:48 am |
    • sadlyperturbed

      Cuppa: Spirituality and religion are two very different things. One has nothing to do with the other. Spirituality is a quality of the character of a person while religion is the rules and laws which govern people and control people. Religion is nothing more than a tool of control and power over others, while spirituality never tries to control others.

      June 30, 2013 at 7:38 am |

    What if it was written in the Bible that BLACKS are not to be greeted as whites in our society? Would this stupid women do the same for Jesus? All these religious zealots get all wrapped up in their freaking religion that they can't even think and make sense of anything. It's no wonder young people are totally turning away from religion. As far as I'm concerned, these pastor are only into this for the money. It's all about the money, yea I'm sure Jesus would be so proud of this stupid woman. Yea do it for Jesus and you will be saved.

    June 30, 2013 at 2:01 am |
    • Saraswati

      The 10 commandments tell her not to put any other god before God, and yet I bet she serves people of other religions. Just another knee jerk bigot defending her biases with a religious book.

      June 30, 2013 at 5:32 am |
  9. LinCA

    Here is a script for Notepad++ to circumvent the filters.

    To install it:
    – Get Notepad++ (it's a free download, just google it).
    – Go to: Plugins – Plugin Manager – Show Plugin Manager – add the plugin Python Script.
    – Go to: Plugins – Python Script – New Script.
    – Give the new script a name and save.
    – Copy everything between the # signs below into the new script.
    – Save the script.
    – Go to: Plugins – Python Script – Configuration – Add script to Toolbar icons.

    To use it:
    – Compose comment in Notepad++.
    – Select entire comment.
    – Run script by clicking the toolbar icon.
    – Copy and post.

    If you need to add new words, just add lines to te script in the "banlist" variable (mind the quotes and comma).

    Script below:

    banlist = ( 'arse',
                'wonderful us' )

    selStr = editor.getSelText()

    startAnchor = editor.getSelectionStart()
    endPos = editor.getSelectionEnd()
    if( endPos > startAnchor ):
        startAnchor = editor.positionFromLine( editor.lineFromPosition( startAnchor ) )
        tmp = startAnchor
        startAnchor = endPos
        endPos = tmp
    selectionLength = endPos - startAnchor
    addedCharachters = 0

    for index in range(len(banlist)):
        findString = banlist[index]

        if ( findString != 'wonderful us' ) :
            isWU = 0
            replacePos = 3
        else :
            isWU = 1
            replacePos = 10

        l = len( selStr )
        f = len( findString )

        if ( l >= f ) :
            c = (l - f)
            lastTagIsOpen = 1

            while ( c >= 0 ) :
                clip = str.lower( selStr[ c : c + f ] )
                if ( ( l - c ) > 2 ) :
                    if ( str.lower( selStr[ c : c + 3 ] ) == '<b>' ) :
                        lastTagIsOpen = 1
                if ( ( l - c ) > 3 ) :
                    if ( str.lower( selStr[ c : c + 4 ] ) == '</b>' ) :
                        lastTagIsOpen = 0
                if ( clip == findString ) :
                    if isWU :
                        selStr = selStr[ 0 : ( c + replacePos - 1 )] + '&nbsp;' + selStr[ ( c + replacePos ) : len( selStr ) ]
                        addedCharachters += 5
                    else :
                        if lastTagIsOpen :
                            selStr = selStr[ 0 : ( c + replacePos - 1 ) ] + '<b></b>' + selStr[ (c + replacePos - 1) : len( selStr ) ]
                            addedCharachters += 7
                        else :
                            selStr = selStr[ 0 : ( c + replacePos - 1 ) ] + '</b><b>' + selStr[ (c + replacePos - 1) : len( selStr ) ]
                            addedCharachters += 7
                c -= 1

    editor.replaceSel( selStr )

    endPos = editor.getLineEndPosition( editor.lineFromPosition( endPos ) )
    editor.setSel( startAnchor, selectionLength + addedCharachters )


    June 30, 2013 at 1:59 am |
    • mama k

      wow – good job, LinCA!

      June 30, 2013 at 2:07 am |
    • LinCA

      @mama k

      I got my regular handle banned for the effort, though. Oh well.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:09 am |
    • mama k

      Oh geez. I use a mac, and I will consider it a challenge for me to find something that might take a Python plug-in – I'm sure there must be. But if not, I think I can convert it into Javascript and use it by pasting into a predefined web page source with a button or similar. I'll let you know what I find.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:12 am |
    • mama k

      (I meant, thanks for your efforts, Lin, and Oh geez, sorry you were penalized.)

      June 30, 2013 at 2:19 am |
    • LinCA

      @mama k

      You said, "(I meant, thanks for your efforts, Lin, and Oh geez, sorry you were penalized.)"
      LOL. I figured as much.

      I hope you can use it.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:25 am |
  10. Julie

    And to those who say christianity is about hate and bigotry – you have to answer to your Lord and SAvior Jesus – will you tell HIM he is a bigot? I don't think so – hate sin and love the sinner – and even if they hate you – they hated Jesus and we are to expect the same –

    June 30, 2013 at 1:31 am |
    • dorothy

      If you look at the historical Jesus, he too was offended by the conservative religious of His time who thought they had the market on the "mind of God." If Jesus were here today he would be the first in line to defend gay marriage.

      June 30, 2013 at 1:36 am |
    • Michael

      @dorothy – that's not the way I interpret what Jesus said:
      Matt19:4 And he answered and said to them, Have you not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 5And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall join to his wife: and they two shall be one flesh?

      June 30, 2013 at 1:53 am |
    • dorothy

      @Michael – many things in the Bible reflected the cultural norms of the time.....Jesus, however, became counter-cultural and encouraged people not to simply embrace the culture and religious norms of the time, but rather to move forward. His message was one of love and acceptance, not one that became consumed by the cultural norms of a given period. He set the ball in motion for us to grow in our acceptance of one another – so long as the fundamental message was one of love, commitment, and sincerity towards our fellow men and women. Those who limit the message of God by the cultural norms of a given time drain the life out of the Word of God in the same way that that they did in the time of Jesus when they crucified Him.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:03 am |
    • tallulah13

      Bigotry is bigotry and your empty threats don't frighten me. If your god does indeed exist and if he does indeed discriminate against people for being exactly who they were born to be, then your god is immoral and evil and a bully. Only a coward would worship a bully, and only a selfish, immoral weakling would worship a bully for their own benefit.

      Fortunately, there is no evidence that your god, or indeed any god actually exists. There no reason to fear, and there is no rational reason to discriminate.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:08 am |
    • mama k

      And of course there are ~40,000 different Xtian sects, so this thread could get quite lengthy!

      June 30, 2013 at 2:09 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Bigot? Hell, he's a pr!ck too!

      June 30, 2013 at 2:47 am |
    • iRex

      I don't think God is a bigot, based on the teachings,of Jesus, its just his supposed followers, that don't actually do a dang thing he told him too, that are the bigots.

      Have fun in hell, hypocrite.

      June 30, 2013 at 4:56 am |
    • Saraswati

      I guess it depends how you interpret Jesus' use the "dog" epithet in the Canaanite woman story.

      June 30, 2013 at 5:46 am |
  11. dorothy

    I trust she also does not provide flowers for Jews, Muslims, Hindu, and other people who's beliefs are contrary to hers.

    June 30, 2013 at 1:22 am |
    • Dippy

      You mean she doesn't discriminate among those she discriminates against?

      June 30, 2013 at 1:27 am |
    • dorothy

      Yea, Dippy. That is a very nice summary of what I mean.

      June 30, 2013 at 1:34 am |
  12. ssachida

    Christianity in this country loots 10% of earnings all the believers and use it to run missionaries across the world to bring in more converts to their fold until there is no more non-christian. Sounds similar to their sister religion Islam which uses their believers to commit suicide to kill non-believers until the whole world comes under their fold. Jews and Hindus at least don't run around converting others into their fold.

    When will Americans ever understand that morality in life does not need to come to oneself from fear of God and neither does spirituality need God,.

    June 30, 2013 at 1:13 am |
    • Saraswati

      In the US people actually give far less than that to churches. It's about 2.38 for mainline protestants and 4% for evangelicals (Chronicle of Philanthropy). The numbers are higher for some groups such as Mormons, but these are rare and also grant examptions based on income.

      June 30, 2013 at 5:15 am |
  13. Cheyla

    Religion is about hate and bigotry – just one more way religion harms us all but especially women.

    June 30, 2013 at 12:42 am |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Interesting when on the same forum they post article after article about Gay clergy leading churches and entire districts. To say that Religion is all about hate and bigotry is the same as when the Black Power people in the African American community and the White Power folks in the White community use blanket statements about an entire group.

      Cheyla, you are attempting to fight bigotry but do you even realize that there are many LGBT Christians, Jews and even Muslims?

      June 30, 2013 at 12:47 am |
    • jed

      Try Buddhism.

      June 30, 2013 at 1:20 am |
  14. asygifvasi

    She has every bit as much right to not provide service to gays as she would, oh, say jews or blacks!

    June 29, 2013 at 11:55 pm |
    • Tychi

      She should put a sign outside her store ... "Will not serve gays/lesbians"

      June 30, 2013 at 12:29 am |
  15. TheTruth

    Christians were not instructed to change a society. Like Noah, they were instructed only to advertise the things to come by God and hopefully some would respond to it. The only one that will change the society will be God...its not of a Christian to do what God will do!

    June 29, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
    • Nicodemus Grumpschmidt

      Did you forget to take your medication again? Are you really unable to see how only HUMANS have changed society? What does it feel like to be a godbot? But keep on commenting. Intelligent, insightful people love to point out to you and those like you where your perceptions are 180 degrees away from reality. We're here to help! 😉

      June 30, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Michael

      What do you think was meant by "go baptize all nations?"

      June 30, 2013 at 1:50 am |
  16. paliachi

    Freedom fighters? thats hilarious. Its over goodnight old way of thinking

    June 29, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
  17. Candiano

    Oh, man...BB is playing around with their format again.

    June 29, 2013 at 11:40 pm |
  18. Reality

    Yes indeed, rational thinking on the part of the majority of heterose-xuals won but:

    Revolution? The gay population in the USA is estimated to be 4%. As-suming 50% of these are in the unionization age, that is 2 % of the population. So "riddle me this" where is the revolution?

    And considering that many of these unions are already established, where is the revolution in weddings, markets etc.?

    ("The Williams Inst-itute at UCLA School of Law, a gay and lesbian think tank, released a study in April 2011[24] estimating based on its research that just 1.7 percent of Americans between 18 and 44 identify as gay or lesbian, while another 1.8 percent – predominantly women – identify as bise-xual. Far from underestimating the ranks of gay people because of h-om-ophobia, these figures included a substantial number of people who remained deeply closeted, such as a quarter of the bise-xuals. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey of women between 22 and 44 that questioned more than 13,500 respondents between 2006 and 2008 found very similar numbers: Only 1 percent of the women identified themselves as gay, while 4 percent identified as bis[exual.)

    June 29, 2013 at 11:33 pm |
    • Liz

      (Sorry, I just clicked on "report abuse" accidentally and I can't "un-report" it!

      June 29, 2013 at 11:40 pm |
    • Scholar

      That's nice to get statistics, but those are not the salient ones.
      The ones that count are those in the general population who accept gays getting married, no matter how many gays want to get married.

      June 30, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • maximo

      depends how the information is disseminated and how the survey questions are asked

      US population, when surveyed, state that they think the gay population is 20-25%.

      Why is that? Why do we so overestimate the reality?

      Because of LBGT groups have successfully coopted the media to push their agenda.
      It has worked.

      June 30, 2013 at 1:47 am |
    • tallulah13

      Oh that horrible agenda of equal rights and fair treatment. Poor maximo. It must be painful to live in a constant state of hate.

      June 30, 2013 at 2:14 am |
    • iRex

      Yeah Maximo, the slave owners and segregationists had the same thing happen to them. Its so terribly sad. But not really.

      June 30, 2013 at 5:01 am |
  19. Science


    Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure – The Future Council


    June 29, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
    • lol??

      Who is B&T?? No I won't play video games with you.

      June 30, 2013 at 6:09 am |
  20. bill

    I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.
    Mahatma Gandhi

    June 29, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
    • Mark from Middle River

      Is this the same Ghandi who wrote :

      "We believe as much in the purity of race as we think they do, only we believe that they would best serve these interests, which are as dear to us as to them, by advocating the purity of all races, and not one alone. We believe also that the white race of South Africa should be the predominating race."

      Seems maybe he only liked the White blond and blue eyed Christ, because he sure hated ones as dark as him or darker.

      June 30, 2013 at 12:51 am |
    • lol??

      If Gandhi was alive here and now in ye ol' USA you'd have him under the control of the state for S*E*X* crimes. Spue yer hate elsewhere.

      June 30, 2013 at 6:12 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44
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.