Religion & Belief

 
 
Discovering that one of your loved ones is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender can be particularly traumatic for those of us who come from a faith background. It can often cause conflict with deeply held views and can lead to great soul searching and questioning of one’s fundamental beliefs.
 
Strong religious communities provide definite answers to important life questions and also stable relationship structures. Living without these can be a scary experience but many have found that they have been made stronger as a result of their questioning journey.
 
FFLAG does not presume to offer interpretation on such texts as the Bible, the Koran or Torah but does have members who have faced these issues and who are able to share their experiences with others.
 
Local groups can provide empathetic support and will be able to point to external sources for more specific help.
The following section is intended to provide helpful information on resources available on the Internet. Links here go outside the FFLAG pages.
 
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The Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement seeks to encourage fellowship, friendship, and support among individual lesbian and gay Christians through prayer, study and action, wherever possible in local groups, and especially to support those lesbian and gay Christians subjected to discrimination.
 
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Whosoever is an online magazine dedicated to the spiritual growth of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Christians.
 
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This is a web site dedicated to helping gay Christians with useful information, testimonies etc.
 
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A well­established inter­denominational social group with membership throughout most of the North West of England.
 
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Anglican
Christine is an Anglican mother who loves, accepts and affirms her gay son unconditionally, even though the Church of England rejects ‘homosexual practice’ as incompatible with scripture, advises against blessing same­sex unions and ordaining those in same­sex unions and is presently petitioning Government for exemption from proposed new legislation which will outlaw discrimination against gay people in goods and services.
Christine can be contacted on 01204 883794 Supportive Anglican organisations
 
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Changing Attitude England, founded in 1995, is a network of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and heterosexual members of the Church of England. They welcome as members everyone whose concern is to work for change in the church’s understanding of human sexuality. Their goal is to reach the day when the Anglican Church fully accepts, welcomes and offers equality of opportunity to lesbian, gay and bisexual people.
 
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Evangelical
The Evangelical Fellowship for Lesbian and Gay Christians (EFLGC) exists to support evangelical Christians who know that they are homosexual, or who are seeking to explore their sexuality and to help other evangelical Christians and churches to re­examine their understanding of sexuality ­ www.eflgc.org.uk
 
 
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Other Christian support groups
Metropolitan Community Churches ­ www.ufmcc.org
Inclusive Church ­ www.inclusivechurch.net
 
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Humanism
Humanism is a way of life based on the belief that we face our problems with our own moral and intellectual resources. Humanism places no reliance on any god or gods, ‘holy’ books or the supernatural. Its values such as honesty, accepting responsibility, co­operation and caring for others are based on a concern for human dignity and welfare that is free from dogma.
 
Humanists totally accept the validity of lesbian and gay individuals and their families and give unequivocal support to lesbian and gay rights. They have consistently backed legal reform usually in the face of highly organised and financed opposition from religious bodies. The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (GALHA) has consultative status at the United Nations and the European Parliament. It is also affiliated to Amnesty International. It is committed to opposing discrimination and prejudice of all sorts.
 
The journey to accept the sexuality of our sons and daughters is rarely smooth but humanists are free from what can be the damaging reservations of adherents to religions that consider homosexuality a ‘sin’ and oppose basic human rights for our gay children.
 
Gloria Jenkins – FFLAG Wales
(Gloria is a former Chair of FFLAG Wales and is the proud mother of a gay son and a lesbian daughter).
 
Useful organisations
GALHA (Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association) www.galha.org
British Humanism Association www.humanism.org.uk
 
 
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Charismatic background
Bruce Kent is a member of the Bristol group and has his own web site. He writes. “Janet and I would be very happy if we could help other Christian parents come to terms with their children’s sexuality (we have a gay son). We have been very involved with fundamentalist churches for forty years or so. I was an ordained minister and was a pastor of Pentecostal (AOG) churches and free evangelical churches for about twenty years.
 
To many Christians, the thought of God accepting practising homosexuals or lesbians into the church body is anathema.
My web site www.love-­amazing.com covers a lot of other areas of Christian teaching and the “Gay Christians” issue is just one page of it.
 
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The Support Group, Parents of Jewish Gays and Lesbians, was set up in May 1996 because it was felt that this is a group of people with special needs. 
 
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Imaan supports LGBT Muslim people, their families and friends, to address issues of sexual orientation within Islam. It provides a safe space and support network to address issues of common concern through sharing individual experiences and institutional resources.
Imaan promotes the Islamic values of peace, social justice and tolerance through its work, and aspires to bring about a world that is free from prejudice and discrimination against all Muslims and LGBT people.
 
 

 

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