The Common Good
July-August 1996

Deserving of Justice

by John Cepek, Charleen Cepek | July-August 1996

AS BELIEVERS IN justice for those who face
discrimination in our society, we applaud the Sojourners
mission.

AS BELIEVERS IN justice for those who face discrimination in our society, we applaud the Sojourners mission. But as parents of a gay son, we sometimes question our support of that mission, since Sojourners doesn’t always seem comfortable with viewing gays and lesbians as deserving of the same justice as African Americans, Latinos, women, and the poor. For example, in the May-June 1996 issue, Jim Wallis refers to “honest differences between Christians on what the Bible says about homosexuality” (“Hearts & Minds”); and Danny Duncan Collum, in the same issue, accuses the Democratic Party of becoming “identified with the promotion of...homosexuality” (“Eyes & Ears”).

Gay and lesbian people are not some abstract concept to be debated or promoted; they are real people who face the real problems of bigotry and prejudice on a daily basis, partly because the church is unwilling to examine its biases and educate itself about what homosexuality really is. Does Sojourners have any openly gay or lesbian staff? Has it ever considered interviewing gay and lesbian Christians about how it must feel to be forced into creating their own denomination, the Metropolitan Community Church, because other churches do not welcome them? Has Sojourners ever thought about how very un-Christian comments like Wallis’ and Collum’s sound to gays, lesbians, and their friends and families?

If Sojourners would like to help stop the hatred, then it must live up to its motto of “compassion, community, and commitment” toward all of God’s children, not just those who are “religiously correct.” If thoughtful Christians were able to leave the literal interpretations of biblical passages concerning slavery, women’s proper role in the church, and a host of other now-discredited issues behind, then we pray that they can also look into their hearts and come to see gays and lesbians as part of God’s plan for this world.

John and Charleen Cepek
La Grange Park, Illinois

Sojourners relies on the support of readers like you to sustain our message and ministry.

Like what you're reading? Get Sojourners E-Mail updates!

Sojourners Comment Community Covenant

I will express myself with civility, courtesy, and respect for every member of the Sojourners online community, especially toward those with whom I disagree, even if I feel disrespected by them. (Romans 12:17-21)

I will express my disagreements with other community members' ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

I will not exaggerate others' beliefs nor make unfounded prejudicial assumptions based on labels, categories, or stereotypes. I will always extend the benefit of the doubt. (Ephesians 4:29)

I will hold others accountable by clicking "report" on comments that violate these principles, based not on what ideas are expressed but on how they're expressed. (2 Thessalonians 3:13-15)

I understand that comments reported as abusive are reviewed by Sojourners staff and are subject to removal. Repeat offenders will be blocked from making further comments. (Proverbs 18:7)