This a dialogue with someone I have concerning the women who protested a homosexual group in Palm Springs by walking around the with a cross.
Was outraged that the homosexuals were yelling and even slightly aggressive with an elderly protesting women.
Would you be angry and even outraged (please be honest) if a homosexual came to your church this Sunday and walked through the crowd with a large penis in their hand protesting Christian morality?
What would you say to that homosexual?
Please take my question in love, I am just raising the question.
I don’t think this is a good analogy; there are striking differences between this example and what that woman did. I think the last question you ask is significant, but it doesn’t change the fact that such an act does not parallel what that woman did.
How doesn’t the act parallel?
First, a protest on the sidewalk is very different from a church gathering. A protest is a voicing of opinion in the public sphere, a church gathering is a private meeting that is not at all based upon making a statement (or, at least, shouldn’t be). The raising of that cross at the protest communicates (at the least), “Christianity is clearly and openly opposed to your cause.” This is a message that is not offensive. It expresses an opinion, as futile as the expression of that opinion might be. The raising of a penis at a church gathering is simply disrespectful, especially because it is in a private arena. At the least, that act communicates, I have no respect for your organization.
Christians should, nonetheless, respond gently and with love.
Thank you for your response and hear what your saying. Let me respond. Whether Christians meet in a public or private sphere the issue is that they are meeting to promote their cause. Usually to protest publicly activist organizations have to get permits to meet. Especially in large numbers. So, in a sense they have permission to speak out in a specific way. It is their protest time and not the Christians. So if the Christian interrupts their protest why wouldn’t they expect that crowd to be angry.
Secondly, most groups that have protested churches stand in front of the church on the sidewalk. The issue that I was raising was not one of specific geography, whether a person is standing on public or private property, but one of intrusion. If you intrude a gathering of Christian worshipers or gay protesters you should expect a reaction. Hopefully it will not be violent. But, if it is one should not be surprised, since their are hot headed people on both sides
Thirdly the sign of the cross is a very offensive symbol as Paul himself declared it was an “offense” to the Jews of his time to declare their Messiah died in such a shameful, criminal way. Many people see Christianity and the Cross as an oppressive religion in our contemporary times. Of course it is an extreme view, but merits some truth due to the fact we have such a bloody, hypocritical, and shameful history at times (more specifically the institutional church). The symbol of the cross evokes the same kind of anger as a penis displayed in publicly for Christians would. Why doesn’t a sign that opposes ones view such as the “cross” not be equivalent to the shame of publicly displaying a penis? You admitted that the cross symbolizes a message which is: “Christianity is clearly and openly opposed to your cause.”
Of course they are not equivalent ontologically, due to the fact that one is a religious symbol and the other is sexual\biological. But the interpretation from the opposing communities has a dynamic equivalence.
I am not saying that Christians shouldn’t protest and even display the sign of the cross in a crowd of protesters. What we should do is be surprised when they get angry and ask us to leave, because we would do the same thing to them. For them the penis is not offensive but part of their sexual culture symbolizing “freedom”. For us the cross is not offensive but symbolic of Christ love and freedom from ???.
So, I agreeably disagree with you. The acts are parallel and would evoke the same kind of reactions from both groups. The issue is not protest, but the straw manning we do as Christians towards homosexuals based on their response. The same kind of thing Danny and Karine are doing. I expect if gays protested a Christian church standing on the side walk with their iconic symbol of the “rainbow” or “penis” the reaction would be similar from those church members, “outrage” and “why are they disrespecting us by coming to the area where we meet.
Thanks for the dialogue!
I have much to say in response; I’m not certain I’ll get the time to give you one any time soon. Maybe at some point during this week.