An Easter Treat: Our Religious Allies

BY Trudy Ring

April 06 2012 12:12 PM ET

JAY MICHAELSON BOOK 390x (COURTESY) ADVOCATE.COMF. Jay Deacon
Religious fundamentalists insist that their scriptures, their
beliefs, are unchanging. But beliefs are meant to evolve, writes F.
Jay Deacon in Magnificent Journey: Religion as a Lock on the Past or an
Engine of Evolution.
Deacon has certainly
been through his own evolution: When he was “a teenager bored with the very
proper Presbyterian church,” he embraced the fundamentalist strain of
Christianity at a Billy Graham crusade, then attended an Assemblies of God
seminary. His recognition that he was gay eventually led him away from
fundamentalism to the largely gay Metropolitan Community Church and finally to
the liberal, inclusive Unitarian Universalist Church, where he has been
director of the Office of GLBT Concerns; he is now minister for a Unitarian
congregation in New Hampshire. His journey has led him to call for a new type
of spirituality, one that can help counter homophobia, sexism, war, bigotry,
class exploitation, and environmental destruction. “Regression to a primitive
past is not the answer,” he writes. “Religions must transform, must evolve,
now. They must become engines of evolution, not chains binding us to that
barbaric worst of what humanity is capable.”

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