Rev. Mel White at the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) GLAD Banquet General Assembly 2011





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Published on Feb 27, 2012

The GLAD Alliance (www.gladalliance.org) invited Rev. Dr. Mel White to speak at the banquet at the 2011 July General Assembly. White is a nationally recognized speaker and the author of several books on the relationship between the gay community and the church, including Stranger at the Gate: To Be Gay and Christian in America. White and his partner, Gary Nixon, are leaders of the movement to create "open and affirming" churches across America, that is, churches which not only accept gays and lesbians into membership, but leadership as well.

White told the gathering he welcomed the dialogue among Disciples about the relationship between the church and gay members, but he said the time for prayerful consideration of whether its okay to be gay and a Christian is over.

"Disciples are aware of us, but they don't really know what to do with us," said White. "I appreciate Disciples are really into discernment, but you've been chewing on that bone for 34 years. Discernment without deciding is just really postponement."

"Not to decide is to decide," he said. "By default, the Christian Church has decided homosexuality is a sin and our love for each other is not worthy of recognition."

"Jesus never spent time worrying about being around outcasts," White said. "He simply loved the outcasts unconditionally and that, Disciples, is what we're called to do. Instead, we're making outcasts of gays and lesbians and turning them away."

White told his audience he's received criticism within the gay community for being a member of a Christian church, but has decided the church is where he belongs and can be a positive force in the lives of gays and straights alike. "We know who created us. It was our loving Creator and She loves us exactly as we were created. The church gave me Jesus and even they can't take that away from me."

"The solution for us as Christians is to meet Jesus at the table. Really meet Him. Amen."


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