From they prayer request forum - Celibacy

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Youth Coordinator
Joined in 2008
June 21, 2008, 01:32

Hey Orfeo,

Wow I went through almost that exact same situation on Tuesday but with my Christian psychologist.

He mentioned celibacy and while I didn’t exactly roll my eyes he could tell that I didn’t really want to be celibate my whole life. Not that it’s not a good option for some. But for me I don’t think I could handle that.

I will keep praying for you orfeo. This is not an easy situation and while I am sure you’d love to stay at your current church with your friends, It can be very difficult when support is not around. All the best with future meetings or looking for a new church. 🙂


I will be praying for you. Know that in every challenge there is hope and God is with you in every step you take. 🙂

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
June 21, 2008, 12:08

its interesting isn’t it.

These people don’t really understand the wiring of sexual orientation do they. I think boy george put it so well when he said

There’s this illusion that homosexuals have sex and heterosexuals fall in love. That’s completely untrue. Everybody wants to be loved. ~Boy George

So we are being asked to completely shut down something that is a fundamental need of human beings.

Heterosexual christians don’t see their sexual orientation as being some evil that must never be acted on and asked to be celibate for the rest of thier lives. I think we are all asked to live morally though.

When I spoke recently at the conference in Phoenix AZ…..this was one of the challenges I put to the conference that we need to help our GLBT christian young people find a sense of morality. Of course I dont have the answer for that…..but we do need to talk about it. They are looking for guidance.

Celibacy is one option. I respect peoples right and conscience to choose that. I believe this is Sandy’s choice. But I dont believe that it is a heterosexual ministers right to impose it on all G&L Christians for the rest of their lives. What will they do next? Ask everyone who is not married to never masturbate because it is a sin. We used to teach that and drove some people to unhealthy, secretive, obsessive behavoiurs that tormented them so much it potentially nearly drove them to suicide.

Joined in 2007
June 21, 2008, 17:42

*looks contemplative* You know Anthony… I agree with most of that, amazing. 😆

As a general rule I am not Boy George’s biggest fan but I like that one.

While celibacy is… uh… tough 😳 😆 at times it has many advantages too. Luckily I have never really had a very strong self-hate complex so when I fail I realise that I have failed and repent but guilt and shame are not my primary emotions. Usually I just get frustrated that I am once again at square one. I recomend celibacy to anyone who is unsure one way or the other whether homosexuality is ok with God. It eliminates alot of the angst, celibacy is not sin regardless of whether homosexuality is so it gives you some breathing room to figure it all out. Maybe that is way too legalistic for alot of you, but being ‘right’ with God is a pretty important mental state and doing everything possible to do what is right in there here and now, even when you don’t know what that will be in the future, goes along way towards making the whole thing alot easier.

Joined in 2007
June 21, 2008, 21:33

Hey Sandy, I completely your understand your position and your choice. But that’s exactly the point – it’s YOUR choice.

And I’ve made my own choice, and I’m not changing it because this particular person asked me to.

I think the most frustrating part of my conversations with him have been the numerous hints that if I give it some time, I’ll come around to his way of thinking. He doesn’t seem to appreciate that I live with this every day of my life, whereas he only has to think about it when someone like me come and presents him with a ‘problem’. If anyone might change their mind with more thought, it’s likely to be him.

My mother, who’s a Christian and goes to the same church as I do, has at least understood that from the moment I first told my parents about my sexuality last year. She knows I didn’t arrive at that announcement at the age of 33 lightly, and not ONCE did she try to pull the ‘are you sure, maybe it’s just a phase’ kind of argument.

I think the minister plans on having a talk with Mum at some point… and I have no intention of warning him he’s unlikely to get a warm reception! lol

Joined in 2007
June 21, 2008, 22:38

I think I have had this argument before… On celibacy being a choice. Its not a choice in the sense that I woke up one day and said “hey I think it would be great to be sexually frustrated for the rest of my life, I’m going to be celibate”. It is a choice in the sense that I choose to believe the conservative interpertation and this is a natural consequence of that. So yes, in essence, it is my choice.

However, I did not say to you that you should be celibate. I said, that for anyone who is unsure whether homosexuality is sin or not celibacy is a good way of dealing with alot of the confusion and fall out. It can, if the person chooses, be temporary until such a time as they are convinced its ok to be in a relationship. It just tends to eliminate alot of the guilt and shame, that was my only point, I wasn’t making a judgement one way or the other.

I know I don’t often come across as sympathetic to peoples plights, but I really am. Before I left for the US the church I was at had a group of people that filed a petition to kick me out. I am a conservative Christian who agreed with the churchs stance but it still, apparently, wasn’t good enough. They had no reason to excommunicate me so they didn’t and the pastor didn’t want to have an opinion one way or the other. I know what its like to be talking to someone and know that they are so clouded by their opinion on the issue that they don’t even hear what you are saying.

I respect your decision not to be celibate… sorry I havn’t had time to read the whole thread, was that your decision? If I believed homosexuality was ok I would still be in a relationship so I can fully appreciate where you are coming from. All the best.

Joined in 2007
June 22, 2008, 10:26

Sandy, dearest… I think you’re too used to being defensive around here! I know you weren’t telling me what to do, I didn’t think you were. Neither am I telling you what to do.


– Trevor

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
June 22, 2008, 11:05

Nice respectful tone on this discussion don’t you think. It shows we are progressing.

that was pretty heavy Sandy people trying to throw you out ot the church. Church life can be very cruel and insensitve at times…..which is unfortunate considering its meant to be a group of poeple who are the expression of Jesus Christs love and forgiveness.

I find that my lack of sexual activity also stands me in good stead when speaking with people who have the equation in their heads homosexuality=promiscuity and therefore have pre-judged me.

Considering the enormous differences between the male and female sexual make up…..I wonder if it is easier for a woman to be celibate than for a man.

Joined in 2007
June 22, 2008, 11:07

Thanks for the prayers, people. I just had the second conversation with the minister at my church, which went pretty well – given that he was telling me he can only support me in a leadership position if I commit to celibacy.

I’ve pretty much told him that my decision will be to leave and look for a church elsewhere, but he’s asked me to hold off at least a few days before officially telling him that.

He also advised me to hold my position on homosexuality ‘lightly’ and not paint myself into a corner… 😯 lol, he knew that I was probably going to roll my eyes on that one, so said that I could – and I duly did! If he only knew how many years of wrestling were behind my current position.

Anthony Venn-Brown
Joined in 2005
June 22, 2008, 11:08

hope you dont mind that I split this conversation and made it a separate topic. i’m feeling quite chuffed actually…..first time I’ve done that. Aren’t I clever.

Joined in 2007
June 22, 2008, 11:36

Since Anthony was sooo smart to split the thread I thought I’d better reply in this one 😆

Possibly I am too used to being defensive 😆 I actually loose the witches hat and broom in person and am much more laid back, I rarely even talk about homosexuality since to do so is to set off an atomic bomb in our family. I guess I just like to make sure the other perspective gets some air time and since there are alot of other supportive people here I usually end up defensive and not supportive. *shrugs* thats ok, but every now and then I like to show I have a heart and anoying Chruches make my heart cringe… can hearts cringe? 😆

It was a weird situation for sure Anthony. As a new Christian it was the first church I had been too and I just figured that, well that was what Christians were like. It had more to do with them not liking my more liberal views on homosexuality (yes, I do have a few) not wanting to change was a big one. I couldn’t seem to get across that marriage and children seemed like a fate worse than death for some reason, esepically since about 90% of the church population was in the family way. 😆 Kind of funny now.

Also, I’m not backward in coming forward about most things and I had been though so much as a Christian already that I wasn’t this nervous, shy kid and I stood up for whaat I believed, because well, the worst was over, no matter what they said it was only up from there. I don’t think the people at the church knew what hit them. They were wrong but I was a bit of a new phenomenon as well 😆 and it got people talking about homosexuality which is a good thing, what is acceptable and what isn’t. Someone totally wise once told me, its all about creating dialouge 😆 😆 I have no hard feelings towards anyone, there were alot of really lovely people there too and I wasn’t totally isolated or anything, alot of people went out on a limb for me. It makes me gateful that no one tried to say homosexuality was ok if this is the way they reacted to me! I guess it also makes you wonder how many people there were that were too afraid to come out at all…

I have no idea whether celibacy is easier for a woman than a man, to state the glaringly obvious I am not a man so my perspective is skewed. I think there is validity in the idea that the longer you are celibate the easier it is.

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