Gay Christian teen beaten up, then saved by REAL Christians

Recently received this message on the Facebook page of the Not All Like That (NALT) Christians Project:

I’m a 16-year-old who grew up in a Christian household. I am a homosexual; I like other males.

My mother used to read me the stories of Jesus Christ. When I was young, if I heard the word “Jesus,” what always came to my mind was compassion, love, egalitarian, and harmony. So when I began to see the hatred, inequality and anger shown by Christians to LGBT people, it really discombobulated me. Jesus was nothing like these “Christians” were. These “Christians” confused me, frightened me, and made me mad.

Once my parents knew I was gay they began to treat me differently. There was a brief time when my mother tried to bring me to a gay conversion therapist. Another time I was grounded until I “stopped being a homosexual.” My friends stopped talking to me because being a homosexual is negatively stigmatized where I live, due to the predominance of Christianity here. I quickly lost my parents, friends and family. I was a 13-year-old boy being dehumanized and treated like I’m not a person.

I began to see Christianity as being “the enemy” of equality, because in my mind Christians forget the Christ in “Christian.” This was about four years ago, when I began to have a growing distaste for religion, in particularly Christianity.

Last year I was walking home from school when a bunch of kids beat me up. My neighbor, whom I have known for years, is a Christian. She came outside and helped me up after calling the police to make them leave. She asked me why they were doing that, and I told her I was gay.

She didn’t look at me with disgust or hatred; she sighed and helped me up as she told me that there is nothing wrong with being gay. She told me that I’m not a crime against humanity, and that I won’t go to hell for being gay. Then she hugged me.

For the first time I was shown the other side of Christianity. Slowly, recently within the last year, I saw a growing number of Christians being accepting, and I thought “Wow, this is great!” I began to question my distaste for Christianity. I started to ask myself if I’m being the bigger person, or if I am wrongly demonizing an entire population.

NALT Christians, you give Christians a good name, in a time where Christians are viewed as “All like that.” You not only accept me and people of the LGBT community, but you also saved me from my own ignorant hatred against Christianity.

Thank you a million times for showing the world the beautiful and loving side of Christianity.

Sincerely,

A friend

If you’re a Christian who understands that it’s no sin to be gay (and if you’re at all unsure about that, see my Taking God at His Word: The Bible and Homosexuality), I hope you’ll step forward and make a simple NALT video. It’s very easy to do. You don’t know who out there your video might help save.

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. Don't forget to sign up for his mucho-awesome newsletter.

  • http://www.enesvy.com/ Enesvy

    Once Christian lovingly being Christ to another. This is beautiful.

  • anakinmcfly

    Awesome!

  • http://www.fordswords.net/ Ford1968

    So great!!!!

  • chrissySix

    Mom of the year award for this kids mother…………..yup.

  • Darach Conneely

    It is terrible the damage being done to gays not just by homophobic bullies, but by well meaning Christians who think they are serving Christ in condemning and homosexuals and excluding them in Church. Thank God for this godly woman who reached out protected and accepted that young man.

    • R Vogel

      I think you are being quite charitable with the ‘well meaning’ bit – for the vast majority there is no ‘well meaning’ about it. They are simply bigots.

  • guest

    That’s great but you know atheists don’t need to have a project called ‘NALT’ because anti-gay atheists are a rare species and have no support in the atheist community. So, to any gay Christians reading: don’t support a faith that has a long history of persecuting people like you. Become an atheist. We don’t care if you’re gay!

    • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore

      A case can be made–and is, here–that anti-gay atheists aren’t nearly as rare a species as you think they are:

      http://freethoughtblogs.com/zinniajones/2014/05/atheist-transphobia-superstition-over-science/

      • anakinmcfly

        I love this.

        “I’ve seen atheists argue that trans women shouldn’t be allowed in women’s restrooms, public facilities, or other spaces, because we’re supposedly going to rape everyone. After all, nothing says “rapist” like testosterone blockers, suppressed libido, genital atrophy, and erectile dysfunction.”

        Win.

        • Andy

          That, my friend, is irony writ large.

    • Matt

      Even supposing they are less numerous, “rare” doesn’t mean “non-existent.” Or even “not a problem.”

    • anakinmcfly

      I know lots of anti-LGBT atheists, including the type that like to support their bigotry with evolutionary psychology, saying that homosexuality is wrong because it goes against survival of the species.

      • Andy

        Most atheists I know pride themselves on being pretty smart. And, in fairness, a lot of them are. But going with a minority position in the scientific community hardly seems smart, or scientifically preferable, so I can’t respect this idea. It may have some different foundational facts, but it’s the same fallacious argument the the fundamentalist religious bigots make.

      • Psycho Gecko

        Unfortunately, we get our share of embarrassments as well. I don’t know how someone who has had more than a basic idea of evolution could conclude that homosexuality would be wrong for that reason.

    • Andy

      Not everyone wants to just abandon their faith because of some misguided followers. I would rather simply align myself with another belief system than try to give it up just because I didn’t agree with some other members. But that’s just me. Whether or not you believe is one thing, but not agreeing with a particular religion’s dogma doesn’t have to be a reason to abandon one’s beliefs, particularly if they are otherwise well-examined. Be whatever you want, and surround yourself with people who do care that you are who you are, and are cool with it.

    • BT

      It wasn’t all that long ago that anti gay atheists were a dime a dozen.

      Christians are getting there – we are just a bit slow. :)

  • lrfcowper

    OP, your mom grounding you till you stop being a homosexual would be like me grounding my 16-year-old till he stopped being autistic. God created you the way you are for a reason, to bless you and those your life touches. Don’t give up!

    • Andy

      You are awesome.

  • Pavitrasarala

    Dang onion cutting ninjas…

  • Olayinka Akorede Ayobolu

    Guy, you can either be a gay or a Christian but not a gay Christian…there is nothing like that! Whoever gave you that idea or accepted you the way you are, and is not telling you the kind truth is misleading you.

    • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore
      • Olayinka Akorede Ayobolu

        The Christians use the Bible as their manual guide, the only place where your gay stuff was mentioned in the Bible was in Sodom and Gomorrah, and guess what happened to them…God rained fire upon them from heaven and they were completely destroyed. Unless you don’t believe the Bible, and that makes you a non-Christian.

        • BarbaraR

          You didn’t read any of the links John provided, did you?

          • Olayinka Akorede Ayobolu

            Any born again, Holy-Spirit filled Christian knows how to discern what is right and what the Most High God requires of our lifestyle and daily living. If you go against the Biblical teachings of God and His Christ, no matter the title or position or level of acceptance people give you, it wouldn’t matter. The fact that some church folks accept you doesn’t mean that you have finally gained God’s acceptance and recognition. God will not shift His standard of Holiness and purity even if the Majority of the world go against His doctrine.

          • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore

            Of course he didn’t. I don’t even know why I bother …

          • BarbaraR

            *Nods* I knew he didn’t but I had hopes… until I saw the fundie nonsense.

        • http://johnshore.com/ John Shore

          I’m not gay, you fool.

          • Andy

            That’s how you know he didn’t do the assignment.

        • Sharla Hulsey

          Even the Bible says that the sin of Sodom and Gomorrah wasn’t homosexuality. See Ezekiel 16:49.

    • anakinmcfly

      “but not a gay Christian…there is nothing like that!”

      Many examples to the contrary -> http://www.gaychristian.net

    • Psycho Gecko

      Of course you can be Christian and gay. It’s more reasonable than being Christian and a bigot.

  • Olayinka Ayobolu

    You guys are so afraid of the truth to the extent that you deleted all my comments and blocked me. Being gay is a chronic disease that only the flames of hell can cure. No two ways about it.

    • Andy

      We’ll have none of this shit.

  • Dandhman

    Mr. Ayobolu you can either be a bigot or love your neighbor as Christ loves you and be a Christian. “Whoever gave you that idea or accepted you the way you are, and is not telling you the kind truth is misleading you.” Your words, go remove the beam from your eyes.

  • Dale Little

    Wow! God appears to be so unfair based on what I have read so far, and this young man’s mother must have special standing before God. Why do I say that? Because it is implied that this young man is a Christian because he had a Godly mother, while myself and millions of others had to repent and be born again, just as Jesus said. Does God practice a double standard?

    • James Walker

      it is implied that this young man is a Christian because he had a Godly mother

      nowhere in the letter is that implied. the writer clearly states he developed a distaste for the Christian faith due to the unfair treatment he received from his parents and from people in the churches where he grew up. his attitude began to change when his neighbor helped him after he was beaten up.

  • Robert McHenry

    The problem with christianity is that there is no “one way” to be a christian… just alot of people saying that they have “the way” of being a christian… and all of them use the bible to support their claims and discount the claims of others…. so there is no quality control to the term… essentially the term is pretty meaningless as an indicator of moral or ethical standards.

    For those of us that are not christians…. it is safer and easier to assume that anyone using the term is a bigoted… because as the letter indicates there was only one decent christian out of a town of bigots.


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