Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A Different Kind of Declaration

We often forget that just as there are many relgious groups that are virulently anti-equality, there are other religious organizations that support the right of all people to be included on an equal footing in all aspects of daily life.
The Religious Institute is an umbrella group that has made LGBT equality an integral component of their mission.
Here's what they say in part:
"The courageous witness of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, along with a growing body of social and scientific research, inspire us to affirm sexual and gender diversity as a blessed part of life. Religious leaders must help to create a new understanding of sexual and gender diversity, and to promote full equality of LGBT persons in all areas of religious and public life."
And, also, in an open letter to religious leaders on sexual and gender diversity:

“Heterosexism devalues gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people just as sexism and male privilege devalue women."
Please take a moment to check out some of the various links on their site. Here are a few I found interesting.

Religious Declaration
LGBT Inclusion
Sexulaity Education
Note that the title in the last says "sexuality", not "sex" education. This group has some interesting ideas that might surprise you. For one they *do not* advocate "sexual abstinence" ~ Programs that teach abstinence exclusively and withhold information about pregnancy, contraception and disease prevention fail our young people.
Yeah, I know some might say this is a no-no, but please don't dismiss this group outright.


Jeanne said...

Well, this confirms that I did do a no-no.
Not one comment about this group.
Too bad.
They're an intersting bunch.

Anonymous said...

No, no, Jeanne, I don't think posting about this was mistake at all. I for one am thrilled to hear about this faith community. I'm not Christian, but the fact that there are Christians willing to speak out on behalf of all human beings warms my heart. I hope they keep up their important work.

Jeanne said...

Thanks for posting, Anne.
What I also liked about the group was their inclusion of other religious denominations, not just Christian, though that is their main focus.

Kathy K said...

I just found this post and I've got to say that I'm very impressed ~ with both the post and the group.

Having been raised in the Catholic Christian faith I have a very difficult time with the Christian response to other sexuality. It seems downright archaic that abstinence is the sole response to homosexuality... there they go on their high horses again.

Jeanne said...

Kathy, glad you found the post.
I liked the fact that the group recognized that abstinence was *not* the answer

K. Z. Snow said...

'Bout time a religiously identified group adopted some sensitive, and sensible, positions. How many hundreds of years has it taken?

I addressed this issue in a book I currently have under submission. Sad to say, it's the "Abrahamic" faiths--Judaism, Christianity, and Islam--that have been largely responsible for persecutive attitudes toward non-heterosexuals.

Jeanne said...

But oddly enough, the largest identifiable religious group in support of gay rights are the Jews -- in disproportionate numbers.
And guess where I found out about the group mentioned?
From my weekly Jewish Mosaic Newsletter, the newsletter from the Center for Sexual & Gender Diversity.