Top Vatican and US church officials back new gay-friendly book

webRNS-JAMES-MARTIN2-040617(RNS) The Vatican’s point man on family issues and a U.S. cardinal who is close to Pope Francis have both blurbed a new book by a Jesuit priest and popular author that calls on the Catholic Church to be more respectful and compassionate toward gay people.

They called it “brave, prophetic, and inspiring” and a “much-needed book.”

Such positive language from such senior church leaders is extraordinary and another sign of how Francis is reorienting the church toward a more pastoral focus.   Continue reading

Navy Requires All Sailors to Undergo Transgender Education by July 2017

uss-bataan-fleet-week-2016-nyc-getty-640x480An all-Navy message sent out Tuesday says that all sailors will be required to undergo transgender behavioral education by July 2017.

Starting Nov. 1, the training will educate sailors about the Navy’s new transgender policy that allows transgenders to serve in the military, reported.

“This training will emphasize policies and expectations of personal behavior,” the message states.

It is unclear what exactly is in these training sessions yet, but the Navy will soon send out messages with more information.   Continue reading

Albuquerque Elementary Teachers Told to No Longer Address Students as ‘Boys and Girls’

noboys-girlsTeachers at Carlos Rey Elementary School in Albuquerque, NM are now being told they can no longer address their students as “boys and girls,” local NBC affiliate KOB reports.

This comes after the new transgender bathroom policy for Albuquerque Public Schools, but it is now leaking into the classroom.

A letter was sent to teachers at Carlos Rey this month titled “Gender Identity Procedural Directive.” It tells teachers they can no longer refer to their students as boys and girls, and they are to eliminate gender in their classrooms. Continue reading

Schools Secretly Indoctrinating Children With LGBT Agenda

reuters-turkey-gay-activistsThis week, about 38,000 pupils across the United Kingdom will be required to take part in the first ever “School Diversity Week” to combat “homophobic bullying” in the classroom.

The initiative is organized by the charity Just Like Us, whose aims are to “empower and support young LGBTQ+ people to become active agents of change in making schools LGBTQ+ friendly places.”

A special reception was hosted by the Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercrow, to mark the launch of the initiative on Tuesday, June 14. The event was attended by Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, campaigner Peter Tatchell, MPs and selected school pupils and teachers.  Continue reading…

Bishops urge Church of England to rethink Bible & homosexuality

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. © Neil HalTwo leading bishops from the Church of England say it’s “time to change the church” and reconsider interpretations of the Bible which condemn homosexuality as a sin.

Bayes says he has been “profoundly changed” by encounters with lesbian and gay Christians in recent years, including within his own family.

He says the “hard fact is that the Church has played, and still plays, no small part in bruising and breaking” LGBT Christians.  Continue reading…

Obama proclaims ‘LGBT pride month’ in America

Presidential Proclamation — LGBT Pride Month, 2016


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Since our founding, America has advanced on an unending path toward becoming a more perfect Union.  This journey, led by forward-thinking individuals who have set their sights on reaching for a brighter tomorrow, has never been easy or smooth.  The fight for dignity and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people is reflected in the tireless dedication of advocates and allies who strive to forge a more inclusive society.  They have spurred sweeping progress by changing hearts and minds and by demanding equal treatment — under our laws, from our courts, and in our politics.  This month, we recognize all they have done to bring us to this point, and we recommit to bending the arc of our Nation toward justice.  Continue reading…

Methodists not alone facing LGBT split

1005710142-oh-col-mt-religiVIDEO:  In a divide over LGBT issues that’s been called painful and destructive, some have started to lose hope that a Protestant denomination that claims “united” in its very name will remain that way.

Across the United Methodist Church, there’s a lack of faith that common ground will be found, and it comes from both sides of the aisle — from those who advocate for same-sex marriage and the ordination of openly gay clergy, and from those who are adamant that such actions fly in the face of the Scripture.

The United Methodist Church will continue its decades-old debate at its General Conference in Portland, Oregon, this week, but it’s far from the first group to struggle to navigate this massive chasm.

LGBT issues led to a split in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in 2009 and have caused dozens of congregations to break from the U.S. Episcopal Church since 2003. Some congregations have left the Southern Baptist Convention over the debate, and member-led groups have formed in an effort to advocate change in the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The most vocal conflicts have come in mainline Protestant denominations, which include the Methodist Church, because they are willing to discuss the matter, said Don Huber, professor emeritus of church history at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Bexley.  Source

Transgender politician poised for historic win in Catholic Philippines

337fde547de7676eb73a753c37fda30142bd8e89Geraldine Roman blows kisses to curious crowds and serenades them with a love song as she proudly campaigns to be the first transgender lawmaker in the mainly Catholic Philippines.

The 49-year-old member of a powerful political family has a strong chance to win a seat in the nation’s lower house in Monday’s elections, in what would be a remarkable breakthrough for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

Conservative church dogma is a dominant force in Philippine politics: divorce, abortion and same-sex marriage are illegal, while there are no openly gay politicians at the national level and an LGBT party has long struggled for influence.  Source