Friday, September 02, 2005

AFA Family Values

The American Family Association's web site today gives the "family values" interpretation of the catastrophe on the Gulf Coast. Rev. Bill Shanks, pastor of New Covenant Fellowship of New Orleans, says:
"New Orleans now is abortion free. New Orleans now is Mardi Gras free. New Orleans now is free of Southern Decadence and the sodomites, the witchcraft workers, false religion -- it's free of all of those things now," Shanks says. "God simply, I believe, in His mercy purged all of that stuff out of there -- and now we're going to start over again."

The New Orleans pastor is adamant. Christians, he says, need to confront sin. "It's time for us to stand up against wickedness so that God won't have to deal with that wickedness," he says.

Believers, he says, are God's "authorized representatives on the face of the Earth" and should say they "don't want unrighteous men in office," for example. In addition, he says Christians should not hesitate to voice their opinions about such things as abortion, prayer, and homosexual marriage. "We don't want a Supreme Court that is going to say it's all right to kill little boys and girls, ... it's all right to take prayer out of schools, and it's all right to legalize sodomy, opening the door for same-sex marriage and all of that." New Orleans Residents: God's Mercy Evident in Katrina's Wake

Do not let these people make decisions that affect your child's education.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reverend Bill Shanks said, "New Orleans now is abortion free. New Orleans now is Mardi Gras free. New Orleans now is free of Southern Decadence and the sodomites, the witchcraft workers, false religion -- it's free of all of those things now," In his opinion apparently, New Orleans after Katrina is a better place than it was before.

We've all seen the pictures and read or heard the reports. The city is in chaos. Hundreds (so far) are dead, thousands are stranded with only the shirts on their backs, tens of thousands are displaced, families - like their homes - have been ripped to shreds. But it's not only New Orleans that was devastated or damaged by Katrina's might.

Great stretches of the Gulf Coast were struck -- from Texas to the panhandle of Florida, from the beaaches to miles inland, from the abortion clinics to the steepled churches. The destruction was indiscriminate and involved a lot of Christian people as well as "the sodomites." Reverend Shanks is blind to that fact. He is more concerned with expressing his hatred for gays than for ministering to the refugees.

Shame on him!

Aunt Bea

September 03, 2005 8:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Instead of Reverend Shank's hateful words, I offer the words of an anoymous Episcopal clergy member from more than a decade ago, words that ring with the true Christian spirit of love and acceptance.


A Prayer

Dear God,

I met a young man a few days ago who does not know you like I do, and I was not able to convince him of your love. He is a student, here in San Diego for a seminar, and he saw our Integrity ad in the paper so he called. He wanted, he said, to speak to someone who could answer questions about his faith and how that relates to his homosexuality.

We met and talked for several hours. He quoted me all the familiar passages of scripture used to deny us membership in your body. He told me how his Roman Catholic father and Baptist mother would never approve. He told me he dreamed of one day meeting a special guy he could spend the rest of his life with, and how happy that might be for him if he didn’t think you would punish him for it.

I felt so much of his pain, and I wanted more than anything to share my story, my journey, my faith. I thought that if I told him how knowing you and believing in your love for me has changed my life it would change his, too. I wanted him to know that you walk with us, that you hold us, that you love us, especially because we are gay or lesbian.

I had my work cut out for me. Years of spiritual oppression and abuse had taken their toll. He was afraid of you. He wanted to hide from you in a flurry of anger and denial. I just could not get him to open his heart. I’m not sure I knew how. I finally asked him to participate in a dialogue in his diocese (if it’s even available), listen to the stories of his gay brothers and sisters, and listen to his heart, since so often your spirit speaks to us there.

God, please send your grace into his heart and help him to feel the love that comes through faith. Show him that he is truly a part of your body, a full and equal and complete member. Send him your spirit to lead him in peace.

I wish I had all the right words, all the right answers. So many of my sisters and brothers have run from you, frightened by a God they think is vengeful and ready to punish them. We in Integrity must share with them the good news they knew but forgot; that the gospel is about love, not hate; inclusion, not discrimination and oppression; forgiveness, not judgment; life, not death. Teach me, Lord, teach all of us, how to bring our gay and lesbian family into your kingdom. Teach us all the right words and the best answers. Amen.

This prayer is reprinted from the “Integrity/San Diego Newsletter” June 1992

September 03, 2005 8:55 AM  
Blogger Alcuin Bramerton said...

Is a closed room.
The door is shut
And the curtains are pulled.

In the corner
Is a single book.
The book is out of date.

September 03, 2005 5:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From Sunday's New York Times, Life is not so easy these days in the French Quarter, the district of all-night bars, historic homes and voodoo traditions that is the oldest, rowdiest and, these days, driest part of storm-battered New Orleans.

Outside, the Quarter's elegant 150-year-old buildings look relatively unruffled, except for some loosened bricks, having been spared the worst of Hurricane Katrina's winds and sitting high enough to have avoided the flooding. Ceramic flowerpots on every other balcony seem not to have budged, gaslights still burn outside doors, Preservation Hall stands solidly intact, seemingly undamaged.

So the storm spared the rowdiest part of the city with its voodoo traditions, the part the generates Marti Gras, celebrates witchcraft and false religion, and welcomes gays to Southern Decadence.

What might God be trying to tell Reverend Shanks and his followers?

Try a little tolerance maybe?


September 04, 2005 7:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So when his day of judgement comes, if the afterlife is made up of what each person believes, I am pretty sure "Rev" Shanks will be burning for all eternity in the hellfire he has spent his life seeing for others. A man who rejoices in the death and destruction of so many and so much is surely doomed to the hell in which he believes.

One who believes in a loving God

September 04, 2005 6:37 PM  

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