As anyone who’s ever been in class with me knows, I’m pretty interested in the LGBT-Fundamentalist Christian clash. Consistent with that, I thought I’d share a page from an organization I found: “Christian Healing Ministries.”
This site is dedicated to prayer-healing, which in my experience, is typical of the more fundamental branches of Protestantism. These guys have prayer sessions “by appointment,” along with group session prayers, the former of which are led by “trained volunteer prayer ministers.”
Now, I’ve seen this kind of thing before; the church I attend frequently does some kind of “pray for healing” day. Everything from headache to heartache to schizophrenia, you come, tell the minister what ails you, and he’ll spend about 10-20 minutes praying for your physical, mental, emotional, and/or spiritual health. What distinguished this group to me, however, is that have a whole page dedicated to the “healing” of homosexuality.
Now, I would argue that any attempt to heal homosexuality comes along with the connotation that it *needs* or *should* be healed in the first place, and that it’s just not ok to just be gay.
Now in all fairness, this site is more benevolent than some of the other sentiments I’ve been exposed to; they explain that they feel homosexuality isn’t a sinful choice, they use very gentle language throughout the page, and they’re offering to “help” in the first place. However, the obvious connotation remains: homosexuality is some kind of “disease” that needs healing, and if you are homosexual, you obviously must be seeking a remedy to your disorder. I can’t imagine the kind of cognitive dissonance this would cause someone who’s both Christian *and* homosexual; the choice between your religion (and by potential extension, the approval of your family and community) and your sexuality is one I just don’t think anyone should have to make.
While I wouldn’t necessarily call the mood of this page “intolerant” per se, I would definitely be inclined to call its message demeaning. What is the most distressing to me, though, is that these people don’t really seem bigoted at all; as previously mentioned, they’re gentle, and seem to sincerely want to help. I imagine that if it wasn’t for their faith, they would not give homosexuality a second thought.