One mission of CBMW is to help Christians think through secular and ecclesial trends on gender and sexuality. Through this work, we pore over a lot of different news reports and articles as we attempt to wade through the ceaseless flow of information on the web. In our weekly Gender and Sexuality News Roundups, we aim to distill some of the more pertinent information for you.
The articles below are from a wide variety of sectors and publications, organized generally into three categories. They are presented in aggregate, not necessarily endorsed.
If you see an article that you think should be featured in future CBMW News Roundups, you can send it to [email protected] with the subject “News Roundup.”
Beth Moore’s ministry reignites debate over whether women can preach, Religion News Service (Yonat Shimron and Adelle M. Banks)
“Moore has called herself a “soft complementarian.” She has pointed out that the Baptist Faith & Message says “the office of pastor is limited to men as qualified by Scripture,” a view she said she agrees with. That doctrinal statement is silent on the question of women preaching.”
Southern Baptist report condemns ‘epidemic’ of abuse, looks at ways to assist victims, Religion News Service (Adelle M. Banks)
“A new Southern Baptist Convention report on sex abuse, filled with the voices of survivors, acknowledges numerous ways the denomination has failed to protect members of its churches. The “Caring Well” report also summarizes a range of next steps to address the issue, including educating congregations about abuse, preparing them to help survivors and fostering abuse prevention.”
Her Evangelical Megachurch Was Her World. Then Her Daughter Said She Was Molested by a Minister., The New York Times (Elizabeth Dias)
“At the Village, one of the most prominent Southern Baptist churches in the country and a bedrock of Texas evangelical culture, Ms. Bragg said leaders had offered prayer. And at times she was grateful, and she tried to respect their decisions. But as months passed, she came to believe their instinct to protect the institution outweighed their care for her daughter or their interest in investigating the truth.”
Vatican Rejects Notion That Gender Identity Can Be Fluid, The New York Times (Jason Horowitz and Elisabetta Povoledo)
“The Vatican on Monday flatly rejected what it cast as the notion that individuals can choose their gender, releasing its first extensive document on the issue as Western countries are increasingly wrestling with the social and legal implications of more fluid definitions of identity.”
Americans’ views flipped on gay rights. How did minds change so quickly?, The Washington Post (Samantha Schmidt)
“What’s perhaps most surprising is that support for same-sex marriage has increased among nearly all demographic groups, across different generations, partisan lines and religious faiths. Even among the most resistant religious group, white evangelical Protestants like the Augustine family, support for same-sex marriage has grown from 11 percent in 2004 to 29 percent in 2019, according to Pew.”
Pride Flags and Foreign Policy: U.S. Diplomats See Shift on Gay Rights, The New York Times (Ernesto Londoño)
“American diplomats in Brazil recently sought State Department permission to fly rainbow flags this month at the United States Embassy and a consulate, citing an increasingly hostile environment for gay Brazilians since the election of the far-right President Jair Bolsonaro last fall.”
This ‘good Christian’ prosecutor is overlooking domestic violence charges for same-sex couples, The Washington Post (Deanna Paul)
“In Tennessee, a domestic assault conviction carries enhanced punishments, like permanently forfeiting the right to own a firearm. The prosecutor’s interpretation of the statute was that the sanctions were created to “recognize and protect the sanctity of marriage.” When reached by phone, Northcott said, “There’s no marriage to protect with homosexual relationships, so I don’t prosecute them as domestic,” and refused to comment further.”
Austin ISD to fund Pride parade with church rental revenue, Austin American-Statesman (Melissa B. Taboada)
“After months of lobbying by LGBT rights activists, the Austin school district has committed to use revenue generated from the rental of the Performing Arts Center to a local church opposed to gay marriage to fund district participation in LGBT-friendly activities.”
Hong Kong Court Issues Landmark Ruling in a Victory for LGBT Rights, Time (AP)
“Hong Kong’s Court of Final Appeal said Thursday the government cannot deny spousal employment benefits to same-sex couples, in a ruling hailed as a major step forward for same-sex equality in the semi-autonomous Chinese territory.”
Book review: ‘Equality and Non-Discrimination: Catholic Roots, Acton Institute (Roger Kiska)
“Anderson makes the point that such sweeping legislation is not at all necessary where more tailored policies can achieve the same ends: preventing the mistreatment of those who identify as LGBT without depriving a large portion of Americans of their substantive freedoms.”
Where Have All the Women Gone? Abortion and Gendercide, BreakPoint (John Stonestreet and Roberto Rivera)
“The cultural preference for boys and systemic discrimination against girls is nothing new. But the radical gender imbalance in places like China and India is. Not coincidentally, that imbalance emerged just as abortion became readily available in the 1970s. To put it bluntly, legal abortion made it easier to eliminate unwanted daughters. To put it even more bluntly, gendercide isn’t the result of people having abortions for the “wrong reason”—it’s the result of abortion itself. And though a sexist act of violence halfway around the world should be just as intolerable to us as if it were happening in our own backyard, make no mistake. Elective abortion leads to sex-selective abortion. It is happening in America, too.”
An Obedient Woman, For the Church (Andrea Burke)
“Obedience is not tedium. Obedience is the gate into the fields of joy. Obedience is not slavery. Obedience is protection. The obedient grace-driven striving, the understanding that I will try 100 times to do it right and still mess it up somehow, and yet by the grace of Christ, the Spirit brushes me off and tells me to keep going — that’s a freedom that cannot be measured.”
A new book says married women are miserable. Don’t believe it., Vox (Kelsey Piper)
“The problem? That finding is the result of a grievous misunderstanding on Dolan’s part of how the American Time Use Survey works. The people conducting the survey didn’t ask married people how happy they were, shoo their spouses out of the room, and then ask again. Dolan had misinterpreted one of the categories in the survey, “spouse absent,” which refers to married people whose partner is no longer living in their household, as meaning the spouse stepped out of the room.”
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