A Theology of Gay And Lesbian Inclusion: Love Letters to the Church. D. G. Hanway

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Hanway, a retired Episcopal priest, wants to equip Christians to advocate on behalf of gays and lesbians, and to speak with love and respect to those who disagree. He writes as a pastor, offering 10 open letters to the church in defense of homosexuals, often using their own words and descriptions of the prejudice they have encountered. These faithful homosexual Christians, Hanway says, did not choose their orientation, but have dealt patiently and faithfully with the difficulties of being misunderstood. Hanway also discusses the Bible's teachings on homosexuality, emphasizing that the Gospel is indeed "good news" for all people. The book is strongest when Hanway is sharing the personal stories of gay people who discuss their faith and their hopes for the future. (Review by Publishers Weekly) 
 

Encourage the Church to address the gift of human sexuality—how to view it, how to deal with it, and how it relates to spirituality

A Theology of Gay and Lesbian Inclusion: Love Letters to the Church challenges traditional church teachings that brand homosexuality as immoral, using pertinent scripture from the central Gospel to promote a full acceptance of gay and lesbian Christians. This powerful book questions the assumption that gay Christians are morally inferior, presenting testimony from gay men and lesbians about prejudice they’ve experienced at the hands of the Church—and its straight members. Written as a series of ten letters, the book addresses the strengths and weaknesses of the church and appeals for a new understanding and commitment to the acceptance of its gay members.

From the author:
The purpose of this book is to equip you, Christian warrior of the Gospel of peace, to stand against those who use the Bible to resist change—even that change of which our Lord would approve. In one sense, there is nothing revolutionary about this book. It is a book that respects tradition—but only up to a point: that point where tradition has to change, to give way to what the Holy Spirit is showing us in our day of the mind of Christ. And this is not revolutionary, because tradition has had to change before; it is a developing truth, born of the corporate experience of the children of God, and open to our claiming the exercise of our God-given gift of reason.

A Theology of Gay and Lesbian Inclusion includes a series of letters that progress from establishing the purpose and credibility of the author, to developing grounding in Scripture and experience, to appealing to the reader to act as an ally of gay and lesbian Christians. The letters include:
 

  • “Dear Christian Believer,” which aims for the “bull’s-eye” of the reader’s faith
     
  • “Dear Sexual Being,” which offers a fresh look at a sensitive topic
     
  • “Dear Confused Church Member,” which discusses what gay people are “really” like
     
  • “Dear Concerned Church Member,” which discusses what gay people really want
     
  • “Dear Bible Explorer,” which discusses what the Bible really says
     
  • “Dear Person Trying to Do the Right Thing,” from “being” to “doing”
     
  • and much more

A Theology of Gay and Lesbian Inclusion provides a friendly and informal Biblical rationale for alternatives to traditional church teachings, encouraging the acceptance of gay and lesbian people as fully moral and fully Christian.