Many LGBT+ people who grew up in the evangelical church ten to forty years ago are missing an evolution in the conversation that is taking place in the church today. Thus, when it comes to an issue like gay teen suicide, they believe that any evangelical attempt to care for vulnerable teens is “tampering” with their lives.
On the one hand, I still see some horrific situations. Further, the historical record reveals a gigantic blind spot – we have utterly failed to care for LGBT+ teens over the years. There are many documented cases of suicide. Despite the evolution in conversation, there is still much repentance that is needed today. Point taken.
On the other hand, I encounter many of these LGBT+ teens in the evangelical church today. For sure, some cannot wait until they are 18 so they can escape. Yet I have been surprised by the growing number of teens who say things like this: “I know my church’s position, but they welcome and love and care for me. I love Jesus and this is my church home. I am happy here.”
This may – understandably – seem outrageous to some and yet I believe these growing testimonies prove that the church is “getting real” about loving our LGBT+ teens. Lead Them Home specializes in helping churches ensure that we are nourishing our LGBT+ teens in Christ’s love – and in our love. We passionately share many of the concerns of those who have been deeply wounded by the church. Your opinions are very important.
Lead Them Home has started a One Suicide Is One Too Many campaign within the evangelical community and we are working hard to begin a weekly support group called The Lighthouse. Please help us.