, Salem, MA


May 14, 2008

Letter: College's effort do deal with gay lifestyle more complicated than portrayed

To the editor:

I recently attended the Gordon College Student Association (GCSA) meeting at which the proposed student group "Spectrum" was denied.

I am involved in neither GCSA nor Spectrum, but was simply there to observe the meeting. I have thoughts in response to the article of May 7 headlined, "Campus club rejected: Vote against gay support group leaves some Gordon students feeling isolated."

Gordon is a Christian, Evangelical community, as was noted in your article. That does, as was also noted, at time raise hard questions for us. We are constantly working through how our Christian faith informs our interaction with those around us and with the world in which we live.

That is no easy task. Often we struggle with what it means to be Christians in today's world. One aspect of that is the question of how to best love those whose lives do not reflect the values and guidelines presented in the Bible, both within and outside of our own community. It's tough.

The conversation about how to respond to things like gay marriage or openly homosexual clergy has been one that has been going on since before I arrived at Gordon in the 2003-2004 school year. So you might begin to see that we give a lot of thought to matters like this.

At the moment, GCSA is bearing some of the brunt of the challenge we face as a community of how to best go about being Christians together. The discussion recently about how to proceed in response to the Spectrum proposal was long and deep, considering many things. A few recurring themes in this conversation were that they do not sponsor support groups, and that the clear need for support on our campus for GLBTQ students was one which deserves the utmost care and attention. Members were concerned that Spectrum would not be the best way to address students' needs, and so they didn't approve it. What they turned down was one possible way to address the needs of GLBTQ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning) students, not those students themselves.

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