WASHINGTON – The dean of the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. claimed during his weekly address this past Sunday that it is a sin to oppose homosexuality.
The message was part of a weekend tribute to the homosexual youth at the National Cathedral, and a commemoration of the death of Matthew Shepherd, whose slaying sparked the passage of the federal “hate crimes” bill signed into law by Barack Obama in 2009. During his speech, Gary Hall blamed churches across the country for influencing American beliefs about homosexuality.
“We must now have the courage to take the final step and call homophobia and heterosexism what they are. They are sin. Homophobia is a sin. Heterosexism is a sin. Shaming people for whom they love is a sin,” Hall asserted. “Only when all our churches say that clearly and boldly and courageously will our LGBT youth be free to grow up in a culture that totally embraces them fully as they are.”
He proceeded to claim that churches that oppose homosexuality produce a culture that is harmful to children.
“It’s more than tragic—in fact it’s shameful—that faith communities, especially Christian ones, continue to be complicit in putting our children at risk and abetting the attitudes that oppress them, thereby encouraging the aggressors who would subject our children to pain, humiliation, and violence,” Hall stated.
In an interview with reporters following the message, Hall said that he believes that “sexual orientation is a gift, and the religious question should be about how they responsibly use that gift.”
However, Peter LaBarbera of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality says that Hall’s comments are indicative of a nation that is exemplifying Isaiah 5:20, which rebukes those who state that evil is good, and that good is evil.
“Gary Hall of the National Cathedral is sinning when he claims that opposition to homosexuality is a sin,” he told Christian News Network. “This is counterfeit Christianity in action—transferring the guilt before God from those who are committing sins (of which homosexuality is one) to those who oppose those sins.”
“Obviously, ‘hating’ homosexuals or being so fearful that you fail to offer the hope of the Gospel to people caught up in homosexual sin is wrong, but that’s not what Hall is talking about here,” LaBarbera continued. “He is ‘redefining Christianity’ and sin itself in a way that flips the truth of the Word of God on its head. … The danger is that this new heretical ‘sin-affirming Christianity’ is spreading in the evangelical Church.”
He noted that many such as Hall do not seek to defend other sexual behaviors that they know are sinful, but single out homosexuality as being somehow exempt from God’s law.
“They are not calling porn addiction a ‘gift from God,’ or preaching against ‘adultery-phobia.’ Once again, it’s only homosexuality—one of the best marketed sins in the history of the world—that is gaining favor in the corrupt Church,” La Barbera lamented. “Genuine Christians need to stand against this heresy and champion the real work of Christ in our culture, such as the many men and women who have left homosexuality behind as born-again believers.”
As previously reported, the National Cathedral pealed its bells this past June for nearly an hour in celebration of the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a key section of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Hall also publicly participated in Washington’s homosexual pride march in 2010.