(Photo found at Ookaboo.com)
In this installment of our series, I finally decide that the Holy Roller Church isn't the place for me. Enjoy!
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The third and final straw came when Eugene Robinson was about to be the first openly gay ordained bishop.
I wasn’t sure what to think about homosexuality at the time, so I was on the fence about Robinson’s ordination. The Holy Roller Church, on the other hand, made it perfectly clear that ordaining Robinson would be like ordaining Satan himself. It was during a Wednesday night Bible study when a discussion about Robinson suddenly started. Actually, it wasn’t really a discussion; it was more like a half-hour rant session with everyone chiming in on how the “tolerance of homosexuals” (they never once used the word “gay”) was a reflection of our culture’s corrupt nature. One woman, an African-American woman named Kasandra (who often did half of the talking during Wednesday night Bible study), even said that homosexuality “literally makes God throw up.” Even though I wasn’t gay-affirming at the time, I still could not remember anywhere in the Bible that explicitly said two men (or two women) gives God nausea.
I brushed off that night’s rant session thinking that next week things would go back to normal. I was wrong.
The next Wednesday the ranting began forty-five minutes into Bible study and was still going on an hour and a half later. Once again no one said the word “gay;” it was always “homosexual.” Once again, the general message of the evening was Eugene Robinson was going to singlehandedly destroy Christianity. I finally had to leave the building, mostly because it was almost 10 PM and there was no sign of stopping, but also because I felt like everyone was about to carry picket signs that say, “God hates fags.”
I may not have been gay-affirming at the time, but I already knew that something about the last couple of Wednesdays just wasn’t right. I emailed Pastor Dave about the anti-gay rants. “Will the church welcome a seeker just so happens to be gay?” I asked. “Or will we kick them out? Are we not supposed to love our gay neighbors? Doesn’t the Bible says we have all fallen short of God’s glory? I don’t remember anywhere in the Bible where it says, ‘For God so loved the world, except for those nasty homos.’”
“My dear Travis,” Pastor Dave replied, “God loves everyone, including homosexuals. He just hates their perverted acts. I would love to talk with you one-on-one about this, if you ever get a moment.” But I never did. I was done with the Holy Roller Church at that point. For the past three years I wrestled with the Holy Roller Church, wondering where a non-tongue-talking Christian with a lot of questions like me fit into the congregation, only to realize that it just wasn’t where I belonged. It was finally time for me to find Jesus someplace else, because I no longer saw Him at the Holy Roller Church.
3 weeks ago