NASSAU, February 28, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – A Baptist bishop says the best way to avert the growing homosexual subculture in the Bahamas is to promote and encourage stable, natural families.
Bishop Simeon Hall, the senior pastor of New Covenant Baptist Church in Nassau and former president of the Bahamas Christian Council, said that spousal abuse, incest, and rape in families have irreversible negative effects on children and weaken families, contributing to the growth of a lesbian and homosexual community in the Bahamas.
Bishop Hall said he believes that, although some persons choose a lesbian or homosexual lifestyle, “some studies show that most practicing homosexuals come from dysfunctional families.”
“We must, in imitation of Christ, reach out with love to those persons chained to this lifestyle,” the answer to the “homosexual avalanche” lies in promoting faithful marriages of one man to one woman, strenthening and supporting natural families.
“The worldwide encroachment of lesbian and homosexual lifestyles against heterosexuality will only be curtailed or derailed by greater emphasis on strong, functional, loving family life,” said Bishop Hall.
“Strong, loving functional families,” the bishop said, “are the last bastion against the homosexual avalanche.”
He pointed out that most churches and sociologists agree that adult behavior in all areas is shaped and influenced by what happens in the family.
“Spousal abuse, incest and rape, all these have irreversible negative effects on children and unfortunately and regrettably these are on the rise, and I believe the root cause of some persons embracing the homosexual lifestyle,” Bishop Hall said in a Nassau Guardian report.
The bishop’s candid statements, while asserting that the practice of homosexuality “is a deviance from what God’s word has established,” also affirmed that “homosexuals and heterosexuals share a common humanity.”
“A homosexual is still a person” Bishop Hall said, and “the church must treat all lesbian and homosexual individuals as human beings” worthy of compassion and pastoral care.
Late last year Bishop Hall called on all Christian pastors in the country not to “demonize” homosexuals, saying pastors who portray homosexuals as wicked and threatening are the greatest hindrance to any positive dialogue or efforts the church might establish with them.
“Gay persons are among the fastest growing subculture in the country,” said Bishop Hall in a statement reported by the Nassau Guardian.
“All heterosexuals, as do all homosexuals, stand in need of God’s grace,” he said. “The Bahamian public in general, as well as pastors in particular, must be careful of what we demonize and protest.”
While Bishop Hall urged homosexuals to turn away from their “non-productive and deadly practice,” he also encouraged Christians to invite homosexuals to the church to “experience the transforming power of God.”
“If the Christian church is to reach the unchurched as our Lord commands, then, without changing our message we must change our methods and affirm our common humanity with all persons,” he said.
“Homosexuality is a deviance that stands under the judgment of God. Just as quickly, however, the rank hypocrisy which pervades the church’s leadership will in the end face God’s severest sentence.”
At the same time, Bishop Hall and the Bahamas Christian Council (BCC) have vowed to fight any measure to legalize same-sex “marriage” in the Bahamas.
BCC Vice President Reverend Victor Cooper said in a statement that the group’s position against same-sex marriage “has nothing to do with us being homophobic. It has everything to do with the idea that marriage is God’s idea and we don’t want anyone to dilute that.”
“I am convinced that the majority of the heterosexual Bahamians while they respect the individual rights of others will never accept the legalization of same-sex marriage and to this we give our full support,” Bishop Hall said.
“Same sex marriage clearly violates the divine intent, but will also cause greater deterioration of the social order as we know it today,” he concluded.