Hey! Leave the Year 12 Student Alone! Pick On Someone Your Own Theological Size!
A post by Neil Hart on Homosexuality, LGBT, lesbian and gay stuff and the Lutheran Church of Australia
Over the last few months people have been sending me stuff that focusses on gay issues in the church. People send cartoons, youtube clips even disturbing statements they heard preached by their pastor that Sunday (It would be a bit rude to post those.) If you have seen or heard anything worth highlighting…let me know ok?
This post comes from a newspaper article. Strap yourselves in for THIS ride.
Reader, you know that I always quote my sources if I can… but this time I wont. It involves a year 12 Student in a Lutheran College in a Queensland town with more O’s than they know what to do with. I think that both the student and the College have received quite enough unwanted publicity and stress over this issue and I do not wish to add to the noise. I do however want to talk about some of the issues surrounding this incident as it relates to the pastors and congregations of our church.
I was notified over a week ago about an article in a Qld newspaper. The article spoke of a Year 12 Lutheran College student who had been asked a question on a radio program leading up to the Qld state election. The question was to do with gay marriage. The student said he couldn’t see anything wrong with it.
Ok. Cool. Intelligent, articulate student expresses point of view. End of story…
Well, maybe in a reasonable world that would be true, But remember, we ARE talking about the Lutheran Church and its attitude to homosexuality. Did you really expect reason and common sense?
There is a breakaway group from the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA). They are called the Australian Evangelical Lutheran Church (AELC). From what I understand they are a very small group of only a few congregations. Some people refer to them as the “Chapter One” group because of their fundamentalist and literalist views on the first chapter of the Bible. God created the world in 6, 24 hour days, evolution is a lie, all women should be submissive to men and stone axes and flint arrowheads can be sharpened by crouching down and rubbing them on rocks.
(This blog’s legal department has just advised me that I should clarify that the last sentence is meant as a joke)
Anyway…they are a pretty conservative group.
On hearing the year 12 student’s shocking statement, it is reported from a most unreliable source, that most of them fainted and one of them died.
Those who remained conscious immediately placed an ad in the paper damning this disgraceful expression of independent thought.
Reader, I’ve been describing these events in a facetious manner. No one actually died…or fainted…And I wish that the last bit was a joke too. But, sadly…that’s exactly what they did.
A pastor of the AELC told me that a member of the church who was also a past student of the College, demanded that the College disavow what the student had said. The AELC member is said to have advised the principal that unless he took action, they would go to the press.
Reader, can you see how silly this whole thing is? Just imagine what kind of statement the College might have made if they had given in to the demand.
The Board, principal and staff of (name) college wish to advise that they distance themselves from the independent articulate and intelligent thoughts expressed by our year 12 student. This is in no way encouraged by our college. I wish to assure the community that most of the students are well practised in the simple, unquestioning regurgitation of religious formula. We apologise that our indoctrination process has failed in this instance. Through a process of sleep deprivation, monotone non-stop reading of scripture and a series of exorcisms we are sure that the student involved will quickly repent of his expression of compassion and justice for the gay members in the community. We apologise for any distress we may have caused.
Thank goodness the College appears to have acted with simple common sense in not bowing to the demand. So, as threatened, the AELC members went to the press.This is the wording of the ad that they placed in the paper.
“While the Evangelical Lutheran Church is not affiliated with (name) College, it nevertheless emphatically states that on the basis of Holy Scripture, homosexuality is to be opposed, and warns that any who continue in this practice are in danger of losing salvation,”
The newspaper found all of this interesting enought to lift the ad out of the obscurity of the ads section and put into the body of an article explaining the whole sorry state of affairs under the heading…
“Church makes anti gay stand.”
Wow! You cant buy advertising like that!
What was that curch’s name again? Oh yeh… these guys are the EVANGELICAL Lutherans. Interesting word that. EVANGELICAL. It is made up of two bits from the Greek language. There is the angelos bit which means “messenger”. Then there is the eu (ev) bit in front which means “good”. Being “evangelical” is all about being a messenger who brings good news. Usually it refers to the good news about God’s love shown to the world in Jesus.
So, what “good news” is being preached here?
Hey Gays! You’re going to hell!
Woops, Sorry. that’s not quite right. The AELC ad. “emphatically states”…
HEY GAYS! YOU ARE ALL GOING TO HELL!
Sure sounds like good news to me! And , no doubt, the whole episode has been motivated by the AELC’s loving concern for the year 12 student and the hope that he is not distracted from achieving the very best results possible in his final year at the College.
(Hmmmmm. I think i like the Simpson’s Sarcasm Detector better. What about you, reader?)
Anyway, as if all this wasn’t bad enough…let me for-warn you. You aint heard nothin’ yet. Yes, believe it or not, it gets worse. Stay tuned later in the week for instalment 2.
BTW,,,if you want some genuine examples of good news proclamations…look here…