Growing up in the church, I was taught that being “Christlike” was all about having respect and compassion for all people, regardless of their background and/or who they are. That’s why I find it odd that some church leaders utilize their pulpits to spew UNChristlike teachings about certain communities because of how they choose to live their lives.
Unless you’re living completely under a rock, you’ve heard of the controversy surrounding legendary Jazz and Gospel singer, Pastor Kim Burrell. A video of Pastor Burrell giving a homophobic sermon went viral and it sparked social media outrage. Press play below!
Let me just say that I respect EVERYONE’S opinion, including Kim’s. We all have a right to believe what we want to believe. However, since watching this cringe-worthy clip, I feel compelled to share my perspective on homosexuality in the church, particularly the black church, as well as the obvious hypocrisy that Kim helped reveal.
Let’s be mindful that the sermon is being spewed by a woman who was actually featured on an album of an openly gay secular artist, namely Frank Ocean. She has a single with Pharrell on the ‘Hidden Figures’ soundtrack; a film which stars Jim Parsons, an openly gay actor. She was also scheduled to appear on Ellen, an openly gay woman, to perform with Pharrell….until this happened.
Kim’s very harsh sermon against the LGBT community reveals two major issues involving the church; Ministries spread more judgment than divinity and church leaders are oblivious to the division their judgments causes.
Let’ dive into the whole hypocritical aspect of this….
Many of us have gay/lesbian/transgendered people in our families, so I dare anyone to say there aren’t any members of your church who doesn’t fall under those categories.
They sit next to you while you pray
They direct/sing in your choir
They play in your band
They pay their tithes
They are your ushers, your deacons, and your kitchen help.
What about the folks that make you look good for church?
Your hairdresser? Your barber? The man/woman who sold you your favorite church outfit!
I’m amazed at how much Kim and folks like her benefit from the LGBT community, yet, wants them to “be free from their homosexual spirit”, or they’ll be damned to hell.
Let’s not forget that messages like the ones in Burrell’s sermon cause more division between the communities. You ever wonder why some folks don’t want to spend their Sundays in a church home? Who wants to come to church and listen to something like this?
“Everybody in this room who’s filled with the homosexual spirit, beg God to free you. You play with it. What does that mean? You’ll die from it. You play with it in God’s house in 2017, you’ll die from it.”
If the leader isn’t talking about them, then they’re talking about their mother, their father, their child, etc.
This video reflects the ongoing problem in the black church with conservative Christians using the bible as a tool for oppression. The message that is being spread is not of inclusiveness and love, but rather with coldness and of ostracism.
No one should have to attend church and made to feel like who they are and who they choose to love is a deficit to society.
No human being is made to condone or condemn how one chooses to live.
Some of you guys may say Kim spoke “the truth” and was condemned for doing so. Well, if the truth applies to spreading messages of hate and/or exclusiveness, then she being “condemned” was justifiable.
Love ALL people as God would do. Isn’t that what being “Christlike” is all about?