Champions of LGBTQ life and culture in Rochester, NY since 1973.
Wednesday October 7th 2015



Evangelical hate group Liberty Council manipulated the Pope

Hate group leader Matt Staver

Hate group leader Matt Staver

The Daily Beast eviscerated the Liberty Counsel in a column by Brandon Ambrosio. An excerpt:

The most glaring irony here is that evangelicals are notorious for their negative views of Catholicism, and in particular the pope. Some evangelicals believe the Catholic Church is the Whore of Babylon described in the Book of Revelation. Those beliefs may be limited to a few denominations on the fringes, but it is absolutely the case that evangelicalism holds that Catholicism is doctrinally in error on several major points, including purgatory, prayers to saints, and its veneration of Mary.

Indeed, the Liberty Counsel even responded to a few tweets from apparent evangelicals angry that the group would even mingle with the pontiff. It’s certainly bemusing, then, to hear Davis talk about how humbled she was by Francis’ visit, and how encouraging it was to hear he was “on track” with her marriage crusade. It’s equally bemusing to hear Staver heap praise on Francis’ theological positions. The Liberty Counsel’s intentions with Francis weren’t spiritual or religious. They were merely political. Everything about that meeting was calculated to further Staver’s anti-gay agenda. (Tipped by JMG reader Robin)

RELATED: Last year Ambrosino earned the ire of JMG readers with a National Review article titled “I Wasn’t Born This Way, I Choose To Be Gay.”

Associated Press calls out Liberty Council for lies

The Associated Press today published a story which rips the Liberty Counsel’s “imaginary” Peruvian soccer stadium story and points out that the SPLC has very good reasons for categorizing them as a hate group. Nothing in the story will be a bombshell to regular JMG readers, but it’s good to see the mainstream national media report on what we have known for years. Some excerpts:

Kim Davis’ lawyer stood onstage in a Washington D.C. hotel and pointed to a photo on the screen. It showed 100,000 people packed into a Peruvian soccer stadium, Mat Staver told the crowd, all there to pray for the Kentucky clerk battling against gay marriage. The crowd erupted. It wasn’t true. The photo is old and had nothing to do with gay marriage. Staver’s firm, the Liberty Counsel, which revealed Davis’ secret meeting with Pope Francis, has been accused by advocacy groups of peddling misrepresentations in the past. Yet it has become the main source of details about the controversial pope meeting.

The Southern Poverty Law Center lists the Liberty Counsel as an anti-gay hate groups for spreading false information. “A group that regularly portrays gay people as perverse, diseased pedophiles putting Western civilization at risk are way, way over the line,” said Mark Potok, a senior fellow at the center. The Liberty Counsel has connected homosexuality to higher rates of promiscuity and incest, Potok said, despite scientific evidence to the contrary. The firm opposes laws banning hate crimes and supports discredited conversion therapies that purport to turn homosexuals into heterosexuals. Staver once declared that the Boy Scouts would become a “playground for pedophiles” once it allowed gay troop leaders.

Staver said the meeting with the pope validates his arguments about Davis’ rights to conscientious objection. He rejects even the suggestion he might wake up one day and discover himself on the wrong side of history. Last week, he showed the crowd at the Values Voter Summit the photo of the imaginary Peruvian prayer rally and declared its significance in the battle against Christian oppression. “That, my friends, is happening around the world,” he said. “When one person stands it has an impact and Kim Davis will continue to stand for her lord and savior Jesus Christ.”

Pope’s speech indicates no change to hate; gay Catholics respond

Pope_Francis_celebrates_the_opening_Mass_for_the_Ordinary_Synod_of_Bishops_on_the_Family_Oct_4_2015_Credit_Daniel_Ibaez_CNA-1200x700_cBy Jack Flanagan on

Pope Francis opened the bishop’s synod on Sunday October 4 in Vatican City to discuss the Catholic church’s approach to family issues.

It was hoped the discussion would result in the church taking a more progressive approach to LGBTI Catholics.

Those who hoped this may find themselves disappointed: in his opening speech, he dedicated much time to praising the makeup of the heterosexual family.

‘This is God’s dream for his beloved creation: to see it fulfilled in the loving union between a man and a woman, rejoicing in their shared journey, fruitful in their mutual gift of self,’ he said.

He put the importance of procreation at the center of family discussion, but Dr Richard O’Leary of Faith in Marriage Equality says this is not the approach the Catholic church should take.

‘Marriage is not primarily about procreation but about love and commitment and these qualities are also evident in same sex relationships,’ he said.

The synod will continue until October 25, during which the delegates, who come from around the world, will discuss such family-oriented topics as family planning, divorce and LGBTI inclusion.

A similar report from June was not encouraging. It said the church should be understanding of LGBTI followers, but went no further.

The Vatican is currently reeling from the controversial coming out of a senior priest on Saturday.

The Polish priest Father Krysztof Olaf Charamsa told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera it’s time the church ‘opened its eyes’ to its gay followers.

The same day, Charamsa was sacked from his post at the Holy Office and as a teacher at church-affliated universities.

A case was made however he was fired for having a partner, though priests – gay or straight – vow to be single.

LGBT Catholics tell Pope Holy Spirit blesses them though some Christians want to kill them

By Tris Reid-Smith on

LGBTI Catholics have told the Pope and church officials that they are blessed by the Holy Spirit despite some Christians wanting to kill them.

The group has pledged to stand united in the face of hatred as Pope Francis started his Synod on the Family by praising heterosexual relationships as ‘God’s dream’ – indicating it will change little with regards LGBTIs.

The LGBTI Catholic’s letter says: ‘We need to support each other, and others more vulnerable than ourselves, at a worldwide level, especially in countries which criminalize us, and even think they are honoring God by killing us.’

The new Global Network of Rainbow Catholics has brought together groups and individuals from 30 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America and Oceania.

In the outspoken letter to the Synod on the Family, they single out bishops and the Vatican as spreading hate and lies about LGBTI people.

They say: ‘The last years have not been an easy ride! Many in our church thought that they were serving God by hating us, and some still do, especially among the hierarchy.

‘But we can tell you with joy, that we have kept alive our confession of the Catholic faith! We have kept the faith under persecution.

‘We have found that through this life as dregs among the people of God, the Holy Spirit has given us a surprising capacity to stand up and be counted.

‘Not to be frightened of those who fear us, not to be resentful of the incapacity for approval, and the bureaucratic meanness of spirit and dishonesty to which we have regularly been subjected.’

They explain how they have been meeting in Rome over the last few days and have prayed for those at the synod during their mass.

They say their new group will bring together LGBTI Catholics, their families and friends and other Christians and people ‘of good will’.

And they say they are ‘meek’, adding: ‘We have learned that it is not what the Church can do for us, but what we can do for the Church that matters.’

They go on to explain how they plan to run their group:

‘We need to be able to share information, counter falsehood, encourage each other in our needs, and strengthen our families, especially where civil law does not yet respect them.

‘We want to set up our network in such a way that we can even be useful to you, though we know from long experience how frightened many of you are of communicating with us discreetly, even less talking to us on the record!

‘Having learned, by living with Jesus, not to be dismayed by the falsehoods and calumnies concerning us to which some of you still seem wedded, and even pass off as “teaching of the Church”, you will find us resilient, because we know that we are loved.’

The letter comes after a turbulent run-up to the synod.

In the last week it emerged the Pope met with homophobic law-breaker Kim Davis in the US, although he also met with an old gay friend. And a Catholic priest who came out was immediately fired by the Vatican.


Nine of 67 Alabama judges refuse to issue any marriage licenses

map_alabamaBy Anthony Costello on

Judges in nine of Alabama’s 67 counties are using a forgotten segregation-era law to undermine the authority of the Supreme Court and deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples by refusing to issue any marriage licenses at all.

Judges are using the 54-year-old law, which made it optional for counties to issue marriage licenses to interracial couples during segregation, citing language that says probate courts “may” issue a marriage license instead of “shall,” the AP reports.

As many as 78,000 Alabama couples live in an area where they can’t obtain a license, forcing many to travel out of their way to a county that will issue them.

Currently no one has thrown a lawsuit at the judges denying licenses. Former Alabama Gov. Albert Brewer, who was a House member back in 1961 when the law in question was passed, reiterated that the law’s language is what allows the rebellious judges to apply it to same-sex marriage:

“Certainly they were talking about miscegenation at the time…There’s a big difference between ‘may’ and ‘shall.’”

Anti-gay Alabama officials have repeatedly attempted to undermine the Supreme Court’s Obergefell decision, even pursuing a bill that would’ve prevented the entire state of Alabama from issuing marriage licenses to anyone. Fortunately, the bill failed to achieve the necessary two-thirds house vote. However, Alabama probate judges, like Washington County’s Nick Williams, are refusing to budge, stating that their religious beliefs are being violated, in the vein of Rowan, Kentucky County Clerk Kim Davis.


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