The following is an email sent out by Rev. Elder Ken Martin of the Metropolitan Community Churches. It is essential reading for all Christians, as it hammers home the point that to attend any church, regardless of how "Gay friendly" it is, that is affiliated with any denomination that in any way discriminates against LGBT people, gives undeserved credibility to that denomination.
As you know, it's my firm belief that any Christian, Gay or Straight, who attends any church that in any way excludes any of God's children, is not only lending undeserved credibility to that church and its clergy person, but is involved in a situation that is toxic to one's spiritual life, and is committing a sin sufficient to be an extraordinary offense against God and against the Gospel of Christ!
The following is Rev. Martin's statement:
"This week the delegates to the General Conference of the United Methodist Church once again voted to keep the following words in their Book of Discipline, 'The United Methodist Church does not condone the practice of homosexuality, and considers this practice incompatible with Christian teaching.' Here we go again. Another season of one mainline church after the other condemning LGBT people. My heart sinks when I think of the number of our sisters and brothers who will hear this untruth and continue to live in guilt, shame and fear...or decide to end it. How do we reconcile this with the argument I frequently hear that there may be no more need for MCC because so many other churches are now "open" or "affirming" or "welcoming" to us? In almost every one of our churches I visit I hear about the number of people who have left to attend Methodist or Presbyterian or Episcopal or other churches because they now feel welcome there. I know this is a sensitive issue for some, but there is a truth that needs to be spoken and here it is: if you want to know how welcome you are in most of those churches ask them to marry you or ordain you, or you and your partner show only the exact same amount of affection publicly that heterosexual couples do, or go to the singles group and talk about what it is like to be an LGBT single person, or you and your partner go to the couples Sunday School class. I know there are a few (very few) churches where those things might be possible, but even then there is the ethical question of our presence supporting the larger denominational organization which continues to demonize our lives and demean our relationships. It is time to remember that God called MCC into existence for a purpose which is far from being accomplished. It is going to be a long hot summer or cold winter--depending on where you are in Region One. No matter what you hear, remember that you are a uniquely created and loved child of God. Why not support a church that actually believes that? At MCC we don't just welcome you, we are you!"