Unkind words

Lately we have witnessed unkind words directed against the gay community. In particular, a recent letter to the editor compared gay relationships to cancer and used scripture to justify a position of anger and judgment. However, intolerance is not the mark of all Christian believers. The insensitive communications preferred by some does not express the voice of all people of faith.

In our opinion, Jesus’ love, compassion and acceptance compose the heart of the Christian faith and are much more representative of the gospel than harsh judgment. We are concerned for the gay members of our own community and elsewhere who are under attack by narrow-minded prejudice. Flesh and blood men, women, children, families, co-workers, neighbors and friends are being treated as less deserving of respect, civility and human dignity.

Of course there will always be many different opinions. People have the right to hold even misguided ones. But, we also have the opportunity to learn and to love and to grow. Toward that hope and in that spirit we offer one final Christian opinion:

“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace;

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

Where there is injury, pardon;

Where there is doubt, faith;

Where there is despair, hope;

Where there is darkness, light;

And where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,

Grant that I may not so much seek

To be consoled as to console;

To be understood, as to understand;

To be loved, as to love;

For it is in giving that we receive,

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,

And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.”

Francis of Assisi, Italy, 13th century

Christine Charnock and The Rev. Dr. John Charnock