CA Evangelical Minister Mike Erre Says He's "Sorry" To Gay Community

Jan 15, 2013 | Posted by: Rick in Kansas | Full story: www.queerty.com

Over the weekend Erre, senior pastor at Fullerton, California's First Evangelical Free Church, posted "An Open Letter to the LGBTQ Community" on Facebook :

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Since: Oct 10

San Francisco

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#1
Jan 15, 2013
 

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What a poor excuse for an apology. He starts off fine then feels he has to qualify it with statements like "I do think transformation [to heterosexuality] is possible" and "the homosexual community isn't entirely truthful to you either," going on to discuss the repression of desires.

Most insulting is "I disagree with those who think your sexual orientation is the most important thing about you." I don't anyone who thinks that. Not one person. But there are millions of bigots who think our sexual orientation is not only the most important thing about us, but the only thing.

Apology not accepted.
david traversa

Argentina

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#2
Jan 15, 2013
 

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Though his ambivalence may strike a wrong chord you must give him credit for trying.. We must put ourselves in his shoes and remember he's not an all divining oracle but just a man trying to do what's right after making what he feels was a mistake in judgement.. For a pastor this must be doubly difficult considering he has to go against what's in black and white right there in his Bible, however absurd, wrong or downright criminal it may read to him and to intelligent, unbiased people everywhere.. This "repression of desires" suggestion is touchy stuff; it would only work with highly disciplined persons with a rich, fulfilling life and more than a touch of wisdom; and how many do we know?

“Marriage Equality”

Since: Dec 07

Lakeland, MI

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#3
Jan 15, 2013
 

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What a strange "apology."

Basically, it sounds like he's sorry that his church has been so mean to gay folks, but only because the result has been that we haven't all tried hard enough to repress who we are and become straight.

He then declares that we're not bound by our desires and that we can overcome them. I wonder how he'd feel if someone was telling him the same?? It's super-easy to tell OTHER people that they don't deserve to be happy, isn't it?

Amazing....

“Live and let live”

Since: Apr 08

New Orleans

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#4
Jan 15, 2013
 

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Considering the author, I think this is a heartfelt apology. It’s also a controversial statement made regardless of the potential theo-political backlash, and made in the interest of standing up for justice. While imperfect, I think the author espouses what being a Christian should mean, rather than taking the popular (gay bashing) approach on homosexuality that the Evangelical community is too often so fond of. However, I think it is disappointing the author stops short of recognizing the full breadth of the double standards much of Christian theology foists upon its LGBT members.
“We have railed against homosexual marriage while turning a blind eye toward concerns like quick and easy divorce, premarital and extramarital heterosexual sex, greed, gossip, and anger. Our double standards have served only to highlight our own hypocrisy.”
And…
“If my friendships are any indication, many yearn to follow Jesus fully and … yet … struggle to reconcile their faith with their desire for intimacy … with someone of the same sex.”
Of course, the author equates acting out on homosexual desires for intimacy with someone of the same sex as something akin to a venial sin, like pre-marital sex. However, unlike their heterosexual peers who may virtuously wait until marriage before having sex, such an option is not offered to same sex couples. The reverend must believe God foists more burdens upon gays and lesbians to remain celibate, than would be the case with heterosexuals. That itself is a double standard.

“saved From jesus”

Since: Jul 11

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#5
Jan 15, 2013
 

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More deceptive, disingenuous bull from a fundie. They've been exposed for their hatred and hypocrisy and are trying to change their strategy for PR purposes, yet still try to push the "you can change if you want to" message.
david traversa

Argentina

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#6
Jan 15, 2013
 
Josh in New Orleans wrote:
Considering the author, I think this is a heartfelt apology. It’s also a controversial statement made regardless of the potential theo-political backlash, and made in the interest of standing up for justice. While imperfect, I think the author espouses what being a Christian should mean, rather than taking the popular (gay bashing) approach on homosexuality that the Evangelical community is too often so fond of. However, I think it is disappointing the author stops short of recognizing the full breadth of the double standards much of Christian theology foists upon its LGBT members.
“We have railed against homosexual marriage while turning a blind eye toward concerns like quick and easy divorce, premarital and extramarital heterosexual sex, greed, gossip, and anger. Our double standards have served only to highlight our own hypocrisy.”
And…
“If my friendships are any indication, many yearn to follow Jesus fully and … yet … struggle to reconcile their faith with their desire for intimacy … with someone of the same sex.”
Of course, the author equates acting out on homosexual desires for intimacy with someone of the same sex as something akin to a venial sin, like pre-marital sex. However, unlike their heterosexual peers who may virtuously wait until marriage before having sex, such an option is not offered to same sex couples. The reverend must believe God foists more burdens upon gays and lesbians to remain celibate, than would be the case with heterosexuals. That itself is a double standard.
Beautiful!!
Jafuf

Boston, MA

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#7
Jan 15, 2013
 
Does this mean he's finally coming out of the closet and will marry his boyfriend?

Since: Mar 09

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#8
Jan 15, 2013
 

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He's just trying a different style.

The substance remains the same.

“Equality First”

Since: Jan 09

St. Louis, MO

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#9
Jan 15, 2013
 

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An apology for hatred, bigotry, and discrimination must be heartfelt, and with no qualifiers. His does not suffice.

“Together for 24, legal for 5”

Since: Sep 07

Littleton, NH

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#10
Jan 15, 2013
 

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It rather reminds me of a friend my mother once recruited into the civil rights movement in the 1960's. Before my mother started working on her, she said "I have nothing against blacks. What would we do for garbage men without them?" She went on to be an effective proponent of civil rights progress in our town.

This pastor is still where my mother's friend started out.

“I Am No One Else”

Since: Apr 12

Seattle

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#11
Jan 15, 2013
 

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I think Charley Sheen's apology was more convincing.
jannrn

Hollywood, FL

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#12
Jan 15, 2013
 
This is the most important thing he says:
"We have highlighted homosexuality over other issues in the Christian community. We have railed against homosexual marriage while turning a blind eye toward concerns like quick and easy divorce, premarital and extramarital heterosexual sex, greed, gossip, and anger. Our double standards have served only to highlight our own hypocrisy."

I often wondered why in some eyes homosexuality was worse than anything else in the universe. Someone finally said it.

Since: Mar 09

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#13
Jan 15, 2013
 

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jannrn wrote:
This is the most important thing he says:
"We have highlighted homosexuality over other issues in the Christian community. We have railed against homosexual marriage while turning a blind eye toward concerns like quick and easy divorce, premarital and extramarital heterosexual sex, greed, gossip, and anger. Our double standards have served only to highlight our own hypocrisy."
I often wondered why in some eyes homosexuality was worse than anything else in the universe. Someone finally said it.
I'm far more concerned that this sectarian religionist twit presumed to instruct non-members, non-religious Citizens, and the Law about such things at all.

Marriage and divorce are Civil contracts. Premarital and extramarital sex are matters of personal freedom.

Wrapping such overreaching and presumption in empty moralizing just adds deceitfulness to his list of social failings.

Mike Erre(D)
Rainbow Kid

Alpharetta, GA

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#14
Jan 15, 2013
 

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Its not enough for him to 'say' he's sorry conditionally
.
He has to actually 'be' sorry unconditionally
.
Time will tell.....

“Live and let live”

Since: Apr 08

New Orleans

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#15
Jan 15, 2013
 
I think ya'll should back off a little. I think he meant the best even if not communicated in exactly the right way. One thing joining Soulforce taught me is that it's just as tough for invididuals to overcome their prejudices as it is for people who are gay overcoming their own because it becomes a matter of identity versus culture, which go hand in hand. I commend the good intention of an apology with the caveat that he still "...has some 'xplorin to do", and would rather welcome his ilk than the latter because the other disguises hate as a sincerely held religious belief. As someone who is gay, I can hardly criticize someone who at least tries, versus someone who does not. In that light, people should welcome a bit of sunshine upon a division that has been so dark. Maybe his actions will (for once) spark a serious and not-one-sided conversation among others who hold those beliefs.

“Together for 24, legal for 5”

Since: Sep 07

Littleton, NH

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Jan 15, 2013
 

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Josh in New Orleans wrote:
I think ya'll should back off a little. I think he meant the best even if not communicated in exactly the right way. One thing joining Soulforce taught me is that it's just as tough for invididuals to overcome their prejudices as it is for people who are gay overcoming their own because it becomes a matter of identity versus culture, which go hand in hand. I commend the good intention of an apology with the caveat that he still "...has some 'xplorin to do", and would rather welcome his ilk than the latter because the other disguises hate as a sincerely held religious belief. As someone who is gay, I can hardly criticize someone who at least tries, versus someone who does not. In that light, people should welcome a bit of sunshine upon a division that has been so dark. Maybe his actions will (for once) spark a serious and not-one-sided conversation among others who hold those beliefs.
If you reread his words, you will find that you were far too optimistic. While it's a step in the right direction that he considers gays no worse than adulterers, he's hardly supporting our families. While it's good that he feels the church should spend more time on charity and social justice and less on homosexuality, he still does not want our gay youth taught to be proud of themselves. In the end, he hopes to trap his prey with sweet words. But he will always consider them fodder for the ex-gay industry.

Since: Mar 09

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#17
Jan 15, 2013
 
nhjeff wrote:
<quoted text>
If you reread his words, you will find that you were far too optimistic. While it's a step in the right direction that he considers gays no worse than adulterers, he's hardly supporting our families. While it's good that he feels the church should spend more time on charity and social justice and less on homosexuality, he still does not want our gay youth taught to be proud of themselves. In the end, he hopes to trap his prey with sweet words. But he will always consider them fodder for the ex-gay industry.
Yes.

“Post-religious”

Since: Apr 08

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#18
Jan 15, 2013
 

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Basically, he's apologizing for appearing to single out gays as "sinners" for greater condemnation than other sinners and sounding too "hostile."

"Oops. Sorry. My bad"

But according to the mythology that he still clings to, gays are still sinning simply because they are gay, and other gays are lying to you about it, and you can and should change. Oh, and you're all a bunch of narcissistic self-gratifiers.

But sorry. If he'd have been a little nicer about it, maybe you would have converted and changed by now.

It hurts him more than it does you.

Gosh, I almost feel sorry for him.

Since: Mar 09

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#19
Jan 16, 2013
 

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"Jerald", you may be "post religious", but you still have the gift of discernment. Keep it polished.

“Live and let live”

Since: Apr 08

New Orleans

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nhjeff wrote:
<quoted text>
If you reread his words, you will find that you were far too optimistic. While it's a step in the right direction ... he will always consider them fodder for the ex-gay industry.
Good point... now that I read it again, I realize I mentally inserted the phrase "do not".

"Some of us have also said to you that salvation or coming to Jesus means being automatically transformed into a heterosexual. I do think transformation is possible"

Regardless, I think reasonable people can disagree over the mutability of sexual orientation. The part I disagree with is the notion that people who are gay *should* want to change, and are in need of therapy to right a wrong.

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