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I have seen this a couple of times and wished to repost it here.

I have edited this extensively because it is very long, but the whole thing is well worth reading. You can to to gypsykate1890's entry here to read it all.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I have made a decision. I will no longer debate the issue of homosexuality in the church with anyone. …

I will no longer listen to that pious sentimentality that certain Christian leaders continue to employ, … "we love the sinner but hate the sin." That statement is… nothing more than a self-serving lie designed to cover the fact that these people hate homosexual persons and fear homosexuality… but …know that hatred is incompatible with the Christ they claim to profess, so they adopt this face-saving and absolutely false statement.

I will no longer temper my understanding of truth in order to pretend that I have even a tiny smidgen of respect for the appalling negativity that continues to emanate from religious circles …The world has moved on, leaving these elements of the Christian Church … lost in a sea of their own irrelevance. …

I will particularly ignore those members of my own Episcopal Church who seek to break away from this body to form a "new church," claiming that this new and bigoted instrument alone now represents the Anglican Communion …Church unity can never be a virtue that is preserved by allowing injustice, oppression and psychological tyranny to go unchallenged.

In my personal life, I will no longer listen to televised debates conducted by "fair-minded" channels that seek to give "both sides" of this issue "equal time." …these stations no longer give equal time to the advocates of treating women as if they are the property of men or to the advocates of reinstating either segregation or slavery…. It is time for the media to announce that there are no longer two sides to the issue of full humanity for gay and lesbian people….

[I do not] believe that evil is somehow less evil if the Bible is quoted to justify it….

We will and we must learn that equality of citizenship is not something that should ever be submitted to a referendum…The time has come for politicians to stop hiding behind unjust laws that they themselves helped to enact, … We do not put the civil rights of a minority to the vote of a plebiscite….

Therefore, I will from this moment on refuse to dignify the continued public expression of ignorant prejudice by engaging it. I do not tolerate racism or sexism any longer. From this moment on, I will no longer tolerate our culture's various forms of homophobia….

I am tired of being embarrassed by so much of my church's participation in causes that are quite unworthy of the Christ I serve … Indeed I feel the Christian Church should not only apologize, but do public penance for the way we have treated people of color, women, adherents of other religions and those we designated heretics, as well as gay and lesbian people….

This is my manifesto and my creed. I proclaim it today. I invite others to join me in this public declaration…


Bishop John Shelby Spong is retired Episcopal Bishop of
Newark, New Jersey. Bishop Spong was a keynote
speaker and workshop presenter at DignityUSA’s
Convention 2007 at Austin, Texas. He is the author of
numerous books including Liberating the Gospels: Reading
the Bible with Jewish Eyes and Jesus for the Non-
Religious. He maintains a website “Bishop John Selby
Spong — A New Christianity for a New World” at
http://www.johnshelbyspong.com/ where you can sign
up for a newsletter Free Weekly Q&A From Bishop
Spong.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
bonnie_halfelvn
Dec. 13th, 2009 10:59 pm (UTC)
You mean the one elected as a bishop? Yes, I heard about that. Now you have two. Episcopalians ROCK!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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