Palin's Church Promotes Gay Conversion
Frederick Clarkson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Sat Sep 06, 2008 at 12:03:24 PM EST
The Associated Press reports that the Wasilla Bible Church where Sarah Palin is a member is promoting a conference on the crackpot notion of gay conversion, sponsored by an arm of Focus on the Family, called Love Won Out.
The conference will be held at the Abbott Loop Community Church in Anchorage on September 13th

Do you know someone who struggles with homosexuality? Focus on the Family can help you respond in a Christ-like way.

"Love Won Out" is a dynamic one-day conference, that will equip you to minister in truth and compassion to a loved one who deals with same-sex attraction, respond to misinformation in our culture, and defend biblical beliefs with grace. Mostly you'll be encouraged by the power of God's love to transform lives of those impacted by homosexuality."Love Won Out" will be here at Abbott Loop on Saturday, September 13.

The conference fee is $50 in advance and $60 at the door. To register call 1-800-A-FAMILY or register online at lovewonout.com.

The AP reports:  
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Gov. Sarah Palin's church is promoting a conference that promises to convert gays into heterosexuals through the power of prayer.

"You'll be encouraged by the power of God's love and His desire to transform the lives of those impacted by homosexuality," according to the insert in the bulletin of the Wasilla Bible Church, where Palin has prayed since she was a child.

[Actually, she has only been a member of this church since 2002]

Palin's conservative Christian views have energized that part of the GOP electorate, which was lukewarm to John McCain's candidacy before he named her as his vice presidential choice. She is staunchly anti-abortion, opposing exceptions for rape and incest, and opposes gay marriage and spousal rights for gay couples.

Focus on the Family, a national Christian fundamentalist organization, has scheduled the "Love Won Out" Conference for Sept. 13 in Anchorage, about 30 miles from Wasilla.

Palin, campaigning with McCain in the Midwest on Friday, has not publicly expressed a view on the so-called "pray away the gay" movement. Larry Kroon, senior pastor at Palin's church, was not available to discuss the matter Friday, said a church worker who declined to give her name.

Ten years ago, Political Research Associates published a report on gay conversion therapy

Calculated Compassion:  How The Ex-Gay Movement Serves The Right's Attack on Democracy by Surina Khan

Based on three years of research, the report shows conclusively that:

-- The ex-gay movement provides political cover for a significant new phase in the Christian Right's long-running anti-gay campaign. For more than two decades, a coalition of "family values" organizations have used anti-homosexual propaganda to organize and mobilize conservative Christian constituents, recruit new followers, and raise money. But vitriol is no longer working the way it was, because of increasing public distaste for demonizing rhetoric, growing public tolerance of homosexuality, and an increase in the number of state, county, and city ordinances outlawing anti-gay discrimination. The Christian Right has seized the political opportunity offered by the ex-gay movement to repackage its anti-gay campaign in kinder, gentler terms. Instead of simply denouncing homosexuals as morally and socially corrupt, the Christian Right has now shifted to a strategy of emphasizing personal salvation for homosexuals-through the ex-gay movement. Behind this mask of compassion, however, the goal, remains the same: to roll back legal protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and enforce criminal laws against them. The evidence suggests that the Christian Right is pursuing this goal with renewed vigor.

-- The ex-gay movement is a potent tool for undermining the rationale for lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender rights. Ex-gay leaders and their Christian Right partners claim that homosexuals need not be "that way" since theirs is a voluntary lifestyle choice that can be abandoned through religious conversion or therapy. By this reasoning, legal protections for homosexuals are not necessary. This latest refinement of the Christian Right's "no special rights" argument has already been "field-tested" with ominous success. The "ex-gay" message was employed extensively in a referendum campaign that overturned Maine's gay rights law-the first time an existing state law of this kind had been reversed. Anti-discrimination laws in other states will undoubtedly now be targeted.

-- Most mainstream religious leaders and religious organizations in the US do not share the views of the ex-gay movement and the Christian Right about homosexuality. Ex-gay and Christian Right leaders have routinely sought to identify their opposition to gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender rights with broader religious beliefs and traditions. But their perspectives on the issue do not correspond with the position of mainstream communities of faith, including the Roman Catholic Church, the National Council of Churches, the United Methodist Church, the American Jewish Congress, and the Union of American Hebrew Congregations. Furthermore, by asserting that homosexuality is a sin that can be overcome, the Christian Right is at odds with many mainstream faith-based communities which not only advocate equal rights for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people, but also affirm their full religious equality.

-- The ex-gay movement is part of a broader social and political movement that is authoritarian and anti-democratic. The ex-gay movement is an integral part of the Christian Right which promotes Christian nationalism, an ideology that seeks to use government laws and regulations to impose fundamentalist Christian values on the entire nation. If the Christian Right has its way, the constitutional walls separating church and state would be eliminated. The ex-gay movement is also located within the political Right's larger social change movement, which is pursuing an anti-democratic and authoritarian agenda of sweeping social, political, cultural, and economic changes.

Tolerance and pluralism are bedrock principles of American society. Yet, as this report shows, the ex-gay movement and the Christian Right are attacking these principles and furthering a divisive political agenda which offers fundamentalist Christian dogma and heterosexuality as the only acceptable norms. Challenging the leadership of the ex-gay movement is essential if equal rights for all people, regardless of sexual orientation, are to be defended. To be effective, such a challenge must take into account the broader theocratic agenda of the Christian Right which the ex-gay movement is being used to promote.




Display:

WWW Talk To Action


Resistance Is Futile: Some County Clerks Say `I Won't' To Marriage Equality
One week ago, the U.S. Supreme Court extended marriage equality nationwide. So where are we now?To no one's surprise, leaders of the Religious Right......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
Celebrating July 4th
A decade or so ago I was vacationing in Hot Springs,  Arkansas.  It was July 4th and I attended the First Baptist Church in......
By wilkyjr (1 comment)
Nine Mainline Protestant Christian Martyrs
This is a tricky time for the Christian Right. Immediately following the mass murder at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in......
By Frederick Clarkson (3 comments)
Terms, Definitions & Glossaries for Writing about the Religious Right
One of the challenges in writing about the Religious Right and what to do about it is the matter of terms and definitions. That's......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)
Top Southern Baptist Official Admits Churches Won't Be Forced To Marry Same-Sex Couples
For years now, Religious Right leaders have been whipping up hysteria by claiming that, should marriage equality become the law of the land, conservative......
By Rob Boston (3 comments)
The Pope, Climate Change and the Catholic Right.
The conservative criticism of Laudato Sii, ("Praised Be"), Pope Francis's encyclical on the environment and poverty that began even before its release, has now......
By Frank Cocozzelli (4 comments)
Simply Put -- LGBTQ rights are not a threat to religious freedom
I'd like to underscore the conclusion of this piece, which is crossposted from LGBTQ Nation.  The advance of civil rights for LGBTQ people is......
By Frederick Clarkson (2 comments)
Pluck Of The Irish: Same-Sex Marriage Vote Shows Yearning For An End To Clerical Domination
A provocative headline from Reuters news service last week caught my eye. "Irish plunge stake through Catholic Church's heart," it read.The headline is perhaps......
By Rob Boston (2 comments)
Religification as a Tool of Massive Resistance to LGBTQ Equality
So much of the contemporary religious liberty campaign being conducted by the Christian Right is demagogic fear-mongering designed to justify discrimination against other Americans,......
By Frederick Clarkson (2 comments)
Happy Birth (Control) Day!: A Golden Anniversary That Shouldn't Be Overlooked
American women today enjoy a right that for thousands of years of human civilization was virtually unheard of: The power to decide if they......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
GOP Gov. Pat McCrory Did The Right Thing
Republican Governor Pat McCrory did the right thing -- and in so doing showed the way for conservative Christian Republicans in the age of......
By Frederick Clarkson (1 comment)
Dinosaurs in South America and Other Legends
In the early seventies I made a visit to church members.  I was with Dr. Bill Hendrix, one of the most distinguished theologians in......
By wilkyjr (5 comments)
The Christian Right's Claims of Persecution by the Secular State Ring Very Hollow
Religious exemptions to various laws and regulations have been much in the news in recent years, particularly in relation to the advance of LGBTQ......
By Frederick Clarkson (2 comments)
The JFK Speech That Made Santorum Want to Throw-Up
On February 26, 2012, (when I first published this post), the heated GOP presidential primaries were getting hotter as the Christian Right sought to......
By Frederick Clarkson (9 comments)
The Religious Bigotry of Rick Santorum
Now that Rick Santorum has announced that he is running for president, again, it is worth reminding ourselves that he is a coarsely obvious......
By Frederick Clarkson (24 comments)

Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (1 comment)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (0 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (0 comments)
Evangelicals Seduced By Ayn Rand Worship Crypto-Satanism, Suggest Scholars
[update: also see my closely related stories, "Crypto-Cultists" and "Cranks": The Video Paul Ryan Hoped Would Go Away, and The Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand/Satanism Connection Made Simple] "I give people Ayn Rand with trappings" -......
Bruce Wilson (11 comments)
Ted Cruz Anointed By Pastor Who Says Jesus Opposed Minimum Wage, and Constitution Based on the Bible
In the video below, from a July 19-20th, 2013 pastor's rally at a Marriott Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa, Tea Party potentate Ted Cruz is blessed by religious right leader David Barton, who claims......
Bruce Wilson (0 comments)
Galt and God: Ayn Randians and Christian Rightists Expand Ties
Ayn Rand's followers find themselves sharing a lot of common ground with the Christian Right these days. The Tea Party, with its stress on righteous liberty and a robust form of capitalism, has been......
JSanford (3 comments)
Witchhunts in Africa and the U.S.A.
Nigerian human rights activist Leo Igwe has recently written at least two blog posts about how some African Pentecostal churches are sending missionaries to Europe and the U.S.A. in an attempt to "re-evangelize the......
Diane Vera (1 comment)
Charles Taze Russell and John Hagee
No doubt exists that Texas mega-church Pastor John Hagee would be loathe to be associated with the theology of Pastor C.T. Russell (wrongly credited with founding the Jehovah's Witnesses) but their theological orbits, while......
COinMS (0 comments)
A death among the common people ... imagination.
Or maybe my title would better fit as “Laws, Books, where to find, and the people who trust them.”What a society we've become!The wise ones tell us over and over how the more things......
Arthur Ruger (0 comments)
Deconstructing the Dominionists, Part VI
This is part 6 of a series by guest front pager Mahanoy, originally dated November 15, 2007 which I had to delete and repost for technical reasons. It is referred to in this post,......
Frederick Clarkson (1 comment)
Republican infighting in Mississippi
After a bruising GOP runoff election for U.S. Senator, current MS Senator Thad Cochran has retained his position and will face Travis Childers (Democrat) in the next senate election. The MS GOP is fractured......
COinMS (5 comments)
America's Most Convenient Bank® refuses to serve Christians
Representatives of a well known faith-based charitable organization were refused a New Jersey bank’s notarization service by an atheist employee. After inquiring about the nature of the non-profit organization and the documents requiring......
Jody Lane (5 comments)
John Benefiel takes credit for GOP takeover of Oklahoma
Many of you know that Oklahoma has turned an unrecognizable shade of red in recent years.  Yesterday, one of the leading members of the New Apostolic Reformation all but declared that he was responsible......
Christian Dem in NC (2 comments)
John Benefiel thinks America is under curse because Egyptians dedicated North America to Baal
You may remember that Rick Perry put together his "Response" prayer rallies with the help of a slew of NAR figures.  One of them was John Benefiel, an Oklahoma City-based "apostle."  He heads up......
Christian Dem in NC (5 comments)
Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Yes, that's right. We have totally lost our religious freedom in Mississippi and it must be restored by our legislators. ......
COinMS (5 comments)

More Diaries...




All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.