Pro-Gay Signs Defaced

April 23rd, 2007 • Category: Justice

Would Jesus Discriminate? Round Two

Late last week, 22 billboards went up across the Indianapolis metro area asking Hoosiers to re-examine their assumptions about what the Bible says about homosexuality. The response has been swift and violent.

Two of the billboards have already been defaced. One, located on the east side of Indianapolis (at the intersection of 10th Street and Mitthoeffer), proclaims, “Jesus affirmed a gay couple. Matthew 8:5-13.” It has been marred with bright red paint that says “lie, lie, lie.”

Defaced billboard

The other defaced billboard, located on the southwest side of town (Kentucky Ave. at Tibbs), proclaims, “The early church welcomed a gay man. Acts 8:26-40.” On Friday, vandals completely removed the word “gay,” so the message became unintelligible. That billboard has already been repaired. In order to deface the billboards, the vandals had to use extension ladders in a dangerous undertaking that constitutes a criminal offense.

The billboard campaign is being coordinated by Jesus Metropolitan Community Church of Indianapolis, with support from Faith In America and Metropolitan Community Churches worldwide. In addition to the 22 billboards, the campaign also features two thousand yard signs and hundreds of t-shirts and bumper stickers, all of which invite readers to visit a web site that provides detailed support for the Scriptural claims – www.WouldJesusDiscriminate.com

So far, Church volunteers have placed half of the two thousand yard signs. Each yard sign and billboard refers to one of five key Scripture passages that affirm gay people. In the past few days, on four different occasions, church volunteers have encountered individuals in vehicles stalking them, so as to systematically remove their yard signs. The Church itself has had trouble keeping yard signs posted on its own property.

There appears to be some kind of organized effort to suppress our message of hope,” says Rev. Jeff Miner, Senior Pastor of Jesus Metropolitan Community Church. “But that will only reinforce our determination to go forward. For too long, religious extremists have distorted what the Bible really says about homosexuality. We’re taking the Bible back, and religious extremists aren’t happy about it.”

According to Jimmy Creech, Executive Director of Faith In America, “The tactics of those who are trying to silence our message remind me of some of the worst chapters of religion-based bigotry in America.” He points out parallels with the tactics of extremists religious movements of the past, including the KKK. “It’s interesting how extremists always seem to prefer to do their work secretly, under cover of darkness. If they’re proud of what they’re doing, why don’t they declare themselves and publicly defend their message of hate?”

Rev. Dr. Cindi Love, Executive Director of MCC worldwide says, “In Indianapolis, and across the globe, Metropolitan Community Churches are devoted to tearing down walls that divide people and building up hope. We’re not looking for a fight with the religious right. This is about the truth Jesus came to reveal. As the Bible says in Galatians 3:28, ‘There is no longer Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female; for we are all one in Christ Jesus.’”

Rev. Miner repeated his invitation to engage in a public discussion of homosexuality and the Bible with any credible pastor who is willing to have a respectful dialogue. “Let’s shine a light on what the Bible says about this subject,” he said. “Let’s compare our different points of view and then let thoughtful people make up their own minds. If the religious right is so confident they’re right about this issue, then what are they so afraid of?”

The billboard campaign is scheduled to run for thirty days. The goal is to create public awareness of Bible passages that affirm gay people.

Please contact

  • Jesus Metropolitan Community Church, Indianapolis, Rev. Jeff Miner, (317) 722-0000, www.JesusMCC.org
  • Faith In America, Jimmy Creech, Executive Director, (919) 606-6736, www.FaithInAmerica.info
  • Metropolitan Community Churches Worldwide, Rev. Dr. Cindi Love, Executive Director, (972) 358-5907, www.MCCchurch.org

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