Unlike some close-minded perspectives, members of the LGBT community also go to church. There are countless gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgenders who are religious – who believe in God, and who are still doing Christian practices. However, not all religions are welcoming of all genders and view homosexuality and transgender as sins. Among the few Christian denominations that are open to the LGBT community are Episcopal, Presbyterian, Lutheran, United Church of Christ, and United Methodist Church of Christ.
How come not all religions, not even all Christians, are the same in their acceptance of the LGBT? Which churches are welcoming and which are not? Does every denomination actually have a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender church member?
In the Abrahamic religions which consist of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, sexual relations between the same sexes are customarily taboo. One great example in the historical texts, such as the Bible, that refer to homosexual acts is the infamous Sodom and Gomorrah. God was displeased of their activities and caused the burning of the Sodomites. This explains why Christians since forever sees homosexuality as a mammoth sin. Christians usually use the argument about God’s commandment to the people to go to the earth and multiply which they believe only heterosexual couples can do. In Islam, rejection of homosexuality and transexuality is more of cultural than religious. Such genders were not mentioned or described in the Qu’ran.
People believe what they want to believe. As the LGBT community seeks the rights to freedom and recognition, their members also just lets the not-so-accepting individuals be so long as there are no rights violated. The picture about churches rejecting gay people is not that grim because in fact there are still so many religions and even Christian denominations out there that welcome, with arms wide open, the lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgenders.
First off, let’s widen our perspective about religion and not only see Christianity as the only church on earth. Judaism and Islam, being Abrahamic religions are quite similar to Christianity about homosexuality. But Hinduism and Buddhism do not seem to have so many qualms about it. In Hinduism, sexuality is not so much of an object of discussion. Sexual acts or relations between male to male and female to female are regarded simply as desires. There were even mythical narratives that included homosexual and bisexual encounters that were pleasurable and joyful. In Buddhism, intercourse with either the same or the opposite sex plays a role in one’s path to Enlightenment no matter the sexuality. All sexes and genders in Buddhism have equal place.
In Hinduism, Buddhism, and in many of the modern religions today, homosexuality, bisexuality, and transexuality are welcome to their churches or are not seen any different with heterosexuality at all. Gladly, Christianity is slowly becoming friendlier towards the members of the LGBT community as well. So many Christian churches all over America nowadays are not phobic about having gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgenders in their congregations. There are also other denominations that are especially organized for the LGBTs.
To some extent, every church is gay friendly. In each church, there are usually a few homosexuals. For Christians, as long as the person does not give in to the lures of same sex urges, he is okay. The problem it seems is the acceptance of openly gay people. They cannot stand cross-dressing, and obvious non-heterosexual relationships. But that’s alright because everywhere in the U.S. even in the Mormon state of Utah, and the Catholic Rhode Island, there is always a church or two that welcomes you warmly. There, every gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender is not prejudiced and is free to practice his or her faith.