Religious leaders are not happy | Photo: Unsplash/Nikola Knezevic
A California lawmaker introduced a measure calling for ‘love, compassion, and knowledge’ regarding LGBTI matters and it has conservative religious leaders panicking.
Rep. Evan Low (D) originally introduced the measure earlier this month.
Assembly Concurrent Resolution 99 is described as being relative to LGBT civil rights.
‘This measure would call upon all Californians to embrace the individual and social benefits of family and community acceptance,’ it states.
On the people of California and the institutions with ‘great moral influence’, it asks to ‘model equitable treatment of all people of the state’.
Finally, it addresses religious leaders, specifically asking them to ‘counsel on LGBT matters from a place of love, compassion, and knowledge of the psychological and other harms of conversion therapy’.
Low posted a photo of himself with Kevin Mannoia, the former President of the National Association of Evangelicals and Chaplain at Azusa Pacific University, on Tuesday (18 June).
@Kmannoia, Former President of the National Association of Evangelicals & Chaplain at @azusapacific, speaks in support of #ACR99, to reaffirm our values of love and dignity while also acknowledging the harmful practice of #ConversionTherapy . @TrevorProject @eqca @NCLRights @HRC pic.twitter.com/NpiuWBdO9t
— Evan Low (@Evan_Low) June 18, 2019
Mannoia was there with Low to support the measure and ‘reaffirm our values of love and dignity while also acknowledging the harmful practice of conversion therapy’.
Religious leaders call the measure ‘discriminatory’
According to California Family, some religious leaders are planning to testify against the measure. Pastors Ken Williams and Elizabeth Woning are two of those people.
‘For us, walking out our faith with biblical conviction means life and hope. Our faith has saved us from suicide and given us freedom to live with clear consciences,’ said Woning.
Both Woning and Williams previously identified as LGBTI.
Woning continued, targeting activists and advocating for conversion therapy: ‘We too would like to be acknowledged and affirmed. … Instead, activists attack our efforts to care for like-minded friends by promoting dangerous counseling restrictions and stifling our free speech.’
Williams added similar thoughts, discussing his encounter with a loving God.
‘For years, I believed that even God hated me because of my behavior,’ he said. ‘But in my early 20s, I encountered a God … who loved me despite my sins and temptations. …Today, I love my life. I have been married to my beautiful wife for 13 years, and we have created four incredible children together.’
He further described the measure as ‘an unfair and direct attack’.
Other conservative leaders have called the measure discriminatory and a threat to ‘basic liberties’.