Christian Group Readies To Protest Gov. Rick Perry’s Big Prayer Rally

On Saturday Texas Governor Rick Perry will hold “The Response,” a massive prayer rally led by the politician, as well as members of the American Family Association and other right-wing, anti-gay Fundamentalist groups.

Not surprisingly, gay groups will be protesting the event. But so will at least one Christian group, according to the Dallas Star-Telegram.

“We’re protesting because we want to say publicly that we view the Gospel of Jesus Christ very differently from the AFA,” said the Rev. Katherine Godby, interim senior pastor at the First Congregational Church, a United Church of Christ in Fort Worth. “In the minds of so many people these days, groups like the AFA are the voice of Christianity, but we want people to know that there are alternative Christian voices out there.

“We believe that the Gospel is about inclusion, extravagant welcome and radical hospitality to all—no exceptions.”

Can we get an amen?


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  • MBear

    I sincerely hold the belief that there is no such thing as a vocal anti-hate christian. I *welcome* the opportunity to proven wrong! Please! I’ll start baking crow now…please prove me wrong…prove me wrong…prove me wrong! LOL

    Now, about that part of their holy book that calls me an abomination and says I need to be killed…

  • Patrick


    I’m glad to see not all Christians hate us. People like this give me hope that someday I won’t have to immediately react to the words “Christian values” by ducking for cover. Until then, however, I’m going to follow Anne Rice’s lead and keep my distance from all things Christian.

  • LandStander

    @MBear: “that there is no such thing as a vocal anti-hate christian. I *welcome* the opportunity to proven wrong!”

    Well here is your opportunity, as you would say, “to proven wrong”.

  • MBear

    @LandStander: LMAO

    Don’t get me started on the mental illness that is ‘gay christians’. But that’s a whole can of worms for another thread, eh?

  • MBear

    @LandStander: Oh, and further: you will note I said ‘vocal’. I don’t see these people telling their christianist brethren to shut the hell up, k? When you gots the balls, you can march next to me. Until then, step aside, child – we’re fighting for your rights

  • Ogre Magi

    @LandStander: Oh, please! That ain’t nothing

  • Daniel S

    @MBear: I find referring to someone as being mentally ill because of there choice of religion to be as hateful, as say, calling them mentally ill for choosing to express their sexuality. Please keep your hypocrisy to yourself.

  • MBear

    @Daniel S: “Please keep your hypocrisy to yourself.”


    I don’t agree with you.
    I have that right, like you have yours.
    Do you wish to censor me? Am I censoring anyone?

    The comment ended with ‘…for another thread…’. If you’d like to discuss this issue, we should take it to an appropriate thread. Until then, don’t try to censor me.

    As for you claim to ‘hypocrisy’, “I do not think that word means what you think it means”. Try a mirror first. Kisses!

  • WillBFair

    @Daniel S: It’s no use trying to talk to the anti religion crowd. They’re either trolls sent her by the GOP to divide gay atheists and gay christians, or they have emotional isssues that require them to ignore mountains of evidence. They’ll only draw you into their circular ‘logic.’

  • Daniel S

    @MBear: A very valid point, I found your comment distasteful which is no excuse to suggest it shouldn’t be expressed, I think it would have been more appropriate to just express how distasteful and hypocritical it appears and I do mean “appears”. It would appear that to suggest someone who is both gay and christian is mentally ill is suggesting it is impossible for a sane person to both accept their sexuality as gay and hold a christian belief system. This suggestion would seem to stem from your understanding of a specific section ( whether they are currently the majority or not is of no importance)of those who identify as christian who believe homosexuality to be unnatural, wrong, and a choice and who, there for, label gays as mentally ill. If you find this argument used by some christians to be distasteful and untrue then using the same argument to label any person who identifies as both gay and having a christian belief system as mentally ill would be hypocritical because in both cases the person is being labeled mentally ill for not conforming to the labeler’s personal views.

  • Daniel S

    @WillBFair: While I thank you for your support I don’t think it is appropriate to generalize about all people who hold a certain viewpoint. I made a mistake in suggesting MBear shouldn’t express his opinion. The only way for a debate about any issue to have vale is if all viewpoints on said issue are allowed to be expressed. You can not control how other people will respond to your arguments you can only choose to listen to others arguments and thoughtfully consider them before responding.

  • LandStander

    @MBear: “I don’t see these people telling their christianist brethren to shut the hell up, k?”

    Uhhhh…Did you miss the entire point of this article? If you do not see these people being vocally on our side, you must have skipped through this entire article, and also missed the picture that goes with it. You are saying you do not see them doing it, as a comment on an article -about- them doing it….Yeeeesh!

  • WillBFair

    @Daniel S: I’m sorry, but I have no more time to be polite to this group. And the generalizing is valid here. The very idea of being anti religion is extemist bull. There are good religious folk and bad, just like everyone else. But go look at the nutjob ‘arguments’ at Joe My God. Then you can tell me I’m being unfair. I’m actually starting to think that many of them are hired provocateurs.

  • Ambrose

    @MBear: MBear, I’m the lay organizer for the protest by Fort Worth First Congregational Church against the AFA. We’ll be standing outside Reliant Stadium Saturday morning, clearly and “vocally” proclaiming that “hate speech is not the gospel,” and handing out flyers calling out the AFA for its hate speech. Are you saying I and my fellow congregants just don’t exist? I assure you, we do, and we intend to start calling out people who falsely preach hate, sexism, homophobia, racism, religious bigotry, in the name of the gospel.

  • Ambrose

    @MBear: MBear, I’m still confused. We will be standing in the hot sun outside Perry’s prayer rally for hours Saturday morning, holding up signs that say, “hate speech is not the gospel,” “separation of church and hate,” “real Christians don’t need scapegoats,” etc., all of which pretty much adds up to telling those who proclaim hate in the name of Christianity to “shut the hell up.” Again, are you denying that we exist just because we don’t fit into an absolutist notion of what all Christians *must* be? I understand you anger and scepticism, though. Many Christians belive as we do, but we have been too silent in the public arena for far too long.

  • Daniel S

    @Ambrose: I adore you, thank you for standing up against those bigots who try to twist Christianity to suit themselves, also your comments make me giggle, I have always found any situation that uses the “shut up, you don’t exist” argument laugh out loud funny, they may as well be sticking their fingers in their ears and screaming lalalalalala

  • Armand

    @Ambrose: And I will virtually picket both groups, standing against heterosexuals and gays spouting bigotry and hate against THOSE gays who are:

    1)a minority 2)badly dressed 3)lack of education (did not pursue higher education) 4)bad table manners 5)spent time in prison 6)on welfare 7)dislikes Cher 8)believes in Jesus or in Muhammad 9) does not floss

  • Henry

    “Can we get an amen?”

    No. The Christian, whoever he or she might be, only cares about making Christianity look good. Notice how the reverend puts it. Christianity is open to everyone… but who wants in? I sure don’t. Christianity comes first for these cultists, not people.

  • Markie-Mark

    @Ambrose: Ambrose, thank you for what you’re doing. I always wondered why other Christians sat back and let people like the AFA and the Pope hijack their religion and trash it. If people don’t respect your religion it’s because of people like the AFA and the Pope. It’s about time that someone stood up to them and I applaud your actions.

  • xander

    I’m glad there will be Queer Christians protesting Perry’s prayerfest — because those of us of other faiths, or without any faith, sure can’t get those hateful fundy people to realise how much LGBT blood is on their hands.

    I see every day the horrid effects that supposedly christian people have had on LGBT students and youngg adults: the self loathing, destructive behaviours and the fears of losing their families or of going to he*L.

    So, protest well, please. We need, all of us, to help change minds and hearts of our enemies.

  • lemon-lime

    @Ambrose: Bless you and all the churches who realize that Jesus would weep at the way so many mainstream churches cast us aside like lepers.

    This Gay Chrisitian has been waiting for a long time for words to become actions. Thank you!

  • DannyB


    If you think all Christians are hate filled then the haters have won.

    If you don’t believe, I respect your right to not believe.

    The gospel is supposed to be good news. For unbelievers. But some so called Christians have only bad news. They ARE bad news.

    If God can save me, He can save anybody who asks.

  • Abirdwillingtobeitself

    Paul was probably the only person in the Bible to understand the feminine, and even he was disappointingly anti-gay. There’s no Bible-based reason to be pro-gay, which is why so many Christians are overwhelmingly anti-gay.

  • xander

    I should have acknowleged that there may well be LGBT-affirming people there protesting, too. I’m remiss to leave out our hetero allies.

    p.s. : Is anyone else getting 503 server errors whilst trying to post? gaaaaaaah.

  • northtexasronnie

    The Star-Telegram is Fort Worth’s paper not Dallas. Dallas’ paper is the Dallas Morning News.

    Sorry to interrupt, preach on.

  • Steve

    The great majority of Christian people have never actually read the Bible. Many of them think they know what it says, having listened to sermons in church for some number of years. Some have even read parts of an English translation of the Bible texts. But, most of the content of church sermons is not actually from the Bible. It is from “tradition” and “interpretation”. Each church, and even each preacher, emphasizes different things. Over time, traditions and interpretations change. Over time, translations of Bible texts also change. No one really knows what Jesus actually said, much less what he believed or wanted to teach.

    Modern historians do have access to some very old pages in the original languages. Copies of those old texts, made at various times, contain very few errors. So those original texts have been copied accurately since they were first written, and there is reason to believe that other texts were also copied accurately. However, of course, they were not written in English. The languages and words that were used two thousand years ago, have shifted in meaning, and the meanings of some of the words are completely unknown. So even with access to the original text, there is much uncertainty as to the actual meaning. That’s part of why there are so many different English translations.

    A good historical account of early Christian teaching regarding homosexuality exists. Read, “Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality: Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century”, by John Boswell. Boswell was a professor of history at Yale. The tradition of condemning homosexuals was not found in the early church. It started only about a thousand years ago, and really became prevalent only in the last few hundred years.

    The Catholic church during the dark ages, just about a thousand years ago, hit upon a way to become wealthy and powerful. The priests found that they could condemn “sins” and threatening people with eternal damnation, and then selling “forgiveness” for a price. The problem was, they needed to identify “sins” that people actually did. Realizing that non-priests could not read, the priests “interpreted” the texts for them. Basically, they lied about what the Bible actually says, and invented a whole bunch of new “sins”, which enabled them to sell “forgiveness” and become wealthy. Translations into modern languages were adjusted to include the new sins, of course, and over time the new teachings became traditional. That intentional misinterpretation, is a large part of why so much the original meanings have been lost.

    The teaching against homosexuality, is one of those “new” traditions. That teaching is still used to raise lots of money and power. We see it being used, again, in Texas this summer.

    Some churches, and some preachers, have rejected that approach, and have made serious efforts to learn the original meaning of the Christian scriptures. They are, of course, rejected by the churches and preachers who continue to use condemnation to gain profit and power.

  • Ambrose

    @Abirdwillingtobeitself: So, you completely buy into the fundamentalists’ way of reading the Bible? Interesting. How about the numerous, significant places in the Bible advocating for welcoming that which one defines as “the foreigner,” the numerous places where marginalized people and underdogs carry out God’s will while it is ignored by the pious, the argument for inclusivity and radical hospitality in books like Ruth (going beyond mere “charity” to a recognition that those who embrace the previously foreign and dispossessed often reap as many blessings from the transaction as anyone else), etc.? But, again, what I find most interesting is how completely and uncritically you seem to accept fundamentalists’ statements about what the Bible does and doesn’t say.

  • Ambrose

    @Henry: Henry, which Christian are you talking about? It’s true that our congregation and protestors would like to see Christians doing a better job at standing up for vulnerable people and at opposing hateful words and actions. But, that’s because of the negative effect on people. We are not the least interested in ehancing the reputation of a certain brand of Christianity–i.e., that of the AFA, Pat Robertson, homophobic leaders of the Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Methodist and Anglican churches, etc. We’d be quite happy to see the bigoted, misogynist, homophobic, xenophobic, classist, racist impulses within Christianity pass away. But, we’re convinced a significant part of Christian tradition would survivie. If not, then so be it. To paraphrase words attributed to Jesus about the relation between the law and humankind: “Humankind was not created to serve the gospel, but the gospel to serve humankind.”

  • April


  • Anthony

    @WillBFair: There’s mountains of evidence opposing religion. WTH are you talking about? I was about to agree with your comment about letting people believe as they please but then you though out that somehow there is mounting evidence to support religion? Um sorry but no

  • o

    @Ambrose: Um, didn’t you prove Henry’s point? You want to protect WASPs, which is why you didn’t mention the obvious homophobic Christians, the Southern Baptist church, inerrantists, and other fundamentalists. I don’t see any proof that the denominations you mentioned are anti-gay, but the Catholic Church’s homophobia is well known so I guess that doesn’t matter. However, the Methodists and Anglicans are actually well known for being ahead of other Christian churches on gay rights – however small that is. So your claim about them is false.

  • Mark

    I grew up in a UCC church in CT. The congregation was founded in 1757 and I was taught the newly controversial value of critical thinking. I was taught to read it for myself and make up my own mind. I was taught universal love and acceptance. Today I consider myself a non-believer. The Bible is at war with itself. No amount of liberal thinking can overcome how illogical, contradictory and just plain full of BS the majority of the Bible is. There is wisdom in the Bible, the golden rule for instance. But the value of that wisdom is completely separate from a need to believe in the Biblical God.

  • Shannon1981

    I applaud this and all groups who are trying to shout down the crazy fundamentalist hater sects. However, I hold to the personal truth that religiosity is a mental illness. Furthermore, they have allowed these nutjobs to be the face of their religion for far too long, and now the few sane ones have absolutely no power to make them stop.

    The words “gay christian” make up the biggest oxymoron EVER.

  • Abirdwillingtobeitself

    @Ambrose: I think most of us know from hard experience that Christians don’t stand up for gay people. The ones that don’t will see you throwing even other Christians to the sharks and take a hint. You clearly don’t like Christians different than you, so how can you like gay people.

    I’m an ex-Christian, and I stand by what I said. The whole Bible is anti-gay. I really don’t know what charity has to do with equal rights, or how the command to love your neighbor matters when 1) that’s a universal value and 2) it rings hollow since the Bible also says to stone gay people. The horror of the gaybashing verses could only come home to you if you knew anyone gay.

  • Skeloric

    A christian group standing up to oppose the christianist fascists/homophobes?
    Why don’t I hear it on the nightly news, or read it on the cover of the local newspaper?
    Answer: Because one group is still way too damn loud while their detractors are way too damn quiet.
    Tell me all about how vocal our christian “allies” are when I can actually see it for myself — until then, they aren’t doing their best.

  • xander

    @Skeloric : The prayer rally was over the weekend. The protesters could be as loud as possible, but their protests get rather drowned out amid the chorus of the 30,000 xtianists in the stadium, and the hateful preachers and ‘apostles’ Perry brought in (John Hagee, for instance).

    Welcome to Queerty, by the way.

  • Skeloric

    You pretty much made my point.
    The feeble pittance of protesters got drowned out by 30,000 bigots.
    Mainstream news didn’t even think it newsworthy that were any protesters — which means, for all intents and purposes, that there weren’t any.

  • xander

    @Skeloric : MSM were more focused on Perry’s probable run at the presidency than the actual religious aspects of the event, so I doubt the protestors would have got much notice even if their numbers had been greater.

    I’m still glad that the protesters were there, for reasons mentioned up-thread. To add to that, I hope that anyone who was physically there because they were dragged by friends or family would be aware of the protesters… and also realise that the event wasn’t supported by all factions of Christians. Similar to how some people have picketed at conferences on ‘reparative therapy’, the target audience is the moderate midde and espec. people with wavering convictions.

    You’re right that the reportage was skimpy, from what I read—and let’s say it fell short even on who was speaking there and why.

    And not much news gets picked up at the week-end unless it’s on natural disasters!

Comments are closed.