Not Quoting Quiverfull: Retracting Harmful Words Towards Gays in Church

Not Quoting Quiverfull: Retracting Harmful Words Towards Gays in Church August 1, 2014

exgayfrom Buzz Feed -Exclusive: 9 Former Ex-Gay Leaders Join Movement to Ban Gay Conversion Therapy

Short excerpt from the letter:

Looking back, we were just believing (and sometimes teaching) what we had been taught— that our identity needed mending. We grew up being told that being LGBT was disordered, sick, mentally ill, sinful, and displeasing to God. We grew up being told that loving, same-sex relationships were shallow, lust-driven, deceived, disordered, and impossible.

We grew up with the repetitive message that LGBT people were not enough — not straight enough, not Christian enough, not manly or womanly enough, not faithful enough, not praying enough. Never, ever enough. “Toxic” probably sums it up best. That message is poison to the soul. Especially a child’s soul.

It can take a lifetime to get rid of that old programming and replace it with healthy, non-toxic views of yourself. Recovery from conversion therapy is difficult at best. Some remain forever scarred, emotionally and spiritually. Conversion therapy reinforces internalized homophobia, anxiety, guilt and depression. It leads to self-loathing and emotional and psychological harm when change doesn’t happen. Regrettably, too many will choose suicide as a result of their sense of failure.

In light of this, we now stand united in our conviction that conversion therapy is not “therapy,” but is instead both ineffective and harmful. We align ourselves with every major mainstream professional medical and mental health organization in denouncing attempts to change sexual orientation or gender identity. We admonish parents to love and accept your LGBT children as they are. We beseech the church to accept, embrace, and affirm LGBT persons with full equality and inclusion.

What do you think? Did they go far enough or should there have been some apology in that letter as well?

Comments open below

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement by Kathryn Joyce

13:24 – A Story of Faith and Obsession by M Dolon Hickmon

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • That_Susan

    I think this letter is great! It shows their tremendous regret. I DO believe in apologizing when I realize I’ve hurt someone — but I also understand that some people feel weird about that, if they feel like the sin was too great to ever really be forgiven.

  • Mel

    I can see why they separated an apology from a statement of belief.

    ““We all got together and said it’s time to produce a statement that is not a statement of apology, but a statement on our beliefs on how conversion therapy harms people,” Smid told BuzzFeed. “We felt like we needed to make that statement.””

    If you include an apology in that letter, it is too easy for homophobic pastors to simply blow off the entire letter as placating someone. By stating how their views have changed and what they have seen, they are requiring opponents to refute information.

    Apologies are important. Challenging beliefs is important, too.

  • Laura Turner

    Exodus International has issued apologies. Many of these ex-gay leaders are gay themselves and were horribly affected by the doctrine they were teaching others. This statement is intended to have a broader reach than just the LBGTQ community. As organizations who know it doesn;t work, they are trying to affect change.