I recently attended a workshop where this excerpt from Tony Campolo was shared. It touched me deeply for a variety of reasons. I wanted to share it with my readers. -Wib
“MISSING THE POINT: HOMOSEXUALITY”
by Tony Campolo*
What critics of my beliefs about homosexuality do not understand is that I’m trying to make up for a horrendous failure during high school.
Roger was gay, we all knew it, and we all make his life miserable. When we passed him in the hall, we called out his name effeminately, we made the crude gestures, and we made him the brunt of cheap jokes. He never took showers in PE, because he knew we’d whip him with wet towels.
I wasn’t there, though, the day they dragged Roger into the shower room, and shoved him into the corner. Curled up there, he cried and begged for mercy as five guys urinated on him.
The reports said that Roger went to bed that night as usual, and that sometime around two in the morning he got up, went down to the basement of his house, and hanged himself.
On that day I realized that I wasn’t a Christian. I was a theologically sound evangelical, believed all points of the Apostle’s Creed, declared Jesus to be my Savior. But if the Holy Spirit had actually been in me, I would have stood up for Roger. When the guys came to make fun of him, I would have put one arm around Roger’s shoulders, waved the guys off with the other and told them to leave him alone, to not mess with him, because he was my friend.
But I was afraid to be Roger’s friend. I knew that if I stood up for a homosexual, people say cruel things about you, too. So I kept my distance. If I hadn’t, who knows if Roger might be alive today.
I’m not asking that Christians gloss over biblical teachings, nor we justify same-gender eroticism. I am simply reminding Christians that we are supposed to love people- even those we have been socially conditioned to despise. I am calling Christians to reach out and show kindness and affection toward their homosexual neighbors…
* From McLaren, Brian D & Tony Campolo. Adventures in Missing the Point:
How the Culture-Controlled Church Neutered the Gospel. Grand Rapids:
Zondervan, 2003, pp. 177-78.