Monday, September 16, 2013

letter 40

Dear Bishop Webb,

I am writing to you in hope that God's love will rain down upon you as you make your momentous decision concerning Rev. Heiss. I believe God has used Rev. Heiss as his instrument to demonstrate to our church His love for all. Our church's position regarding homosexual marriage is not one of love. It is one of fear. It is indefensible. To speak out against it is what God requires. One shouldn't be punished for finding the spirit of God within and showering His love to all.

I am speaking as a heterosexual. I have no immediate family members that are gay. I mention this to illustrate that I don't have to personally know the pain homosexuals feel within our church to know that it is wrong. 

I spoke out at a meeting of several churches many years ago. I was ignorant of our "laws" at that time. I really thought the people in the room would agree that it was time to demonstrate God's love for homosexuals.  And, in retrospect, I believe many of them did. However, you could have heard a pin drop! The silence was deafening! 

After the meeting, a woman came up to me. She thanked me for speaking up about the injustice. She said, " It is important for heterosexuals to speak on our behalf."  While I mentally noted that she had made an assumption, I thought her words spoke a great truth. All of God's children need to find their inner God and love thy neighbor as oneself.

I love my church. I don't want to leave it. However, I am embarrassed by a church that has as it's motto: Open Minds, Open Hearts, Open Doors  and closes all to homosexual marriage. 

Please do your best to reconcile God's love with our church laws.

Cheryl Papa
Member of Vestal United Methodist Church

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