Pastoral Resources

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[Pastoral Approaches->]

[Pastoral articles on the web->pastoral-articles-on-the-web]

[The meaning of same-sex attraction by Dr Joe Nicolosi->]

[Same-sex unions, personal experience and socal convention and scriptural witness->]

[A research study of gay marriage->]

[Gay Vicars on Channel 4 – A Personal Response by Dr Lisa Severine Nolland->]

[Testimony->Christ changes lives – a testimony]

[Do you do reparative therapy? – a psychologist speaks->]

[Book Reviews->]

[Civil Partnership Act – Q&A Leaflet->]

[Christian Ministries of support and/or healing->]

[Science and Homosexuality->]

[Issues around Homosexuality->]

[Sexuality – a make or break issue->]

[Am I gay? Answers to questions about same sex attraction->]

Helping women with same-sex attraction

[Read Jeffrey Satinover here discussing a sophisticated theoretical framework from which to view the various social, political and religious forms of gay advocacy active and dominant in the western world today->how-mental-health-guilds]

[Interview with Mario Bergner->interview-with-mario-bergner]

[Why We Can’t Talk: The Homosexual Rights Movement in the Church->]
A thoughtful article by a Lutheran pastor on the problems in church conversations between traditional and revisionist understandings of the inter-relationship between faith and sexual identity. Jonathan Sorum, Docent in Systematic Theology at the Evangelical Theological Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia, argues that a revisionist understanding of sexuality short-circuits the moral argument by basing its idea of sexual identity on something from inside, rather than on a Christian identity founded on Christ.

[A Biblical Reflection on Same-Sex Attraction and Christian Love->]
The text of a talk looking at the Church’s teaching about homosexuality, given by Ron Belgau of Courage in the USA, the Roman Catholic group offering support to Christians experiencing same-sex attraction. He begins by talking about the Christian meaning of human sexuality and discipleship, goes on to examine the Scripture’s teaching on homosexual acts in light of the broader meaning of human sexuality, and finally offers some practical advice for how those with same-sex attractions can live the Church’s teaching, and also some suggestions for how everyone else can offer support.

Andrew Comiskey, Strength in Weakness: Overcoming Sexual and Relational Brokenness (ISBN: 0-8303-2368-9) 2003.

Founder and director of Desert Stream Ministries, Kansas City, MO, USA, Andy Comiskey writes powerfully on issues related to brokenness and sexuality. As an ex-gay-identified and now fully hetero-functioning man, he describes the internal workings of shame, sin, woundedness and weakness with clarity and precision, and how they can and still do sometimes undermine him. More importantly, however, Andy explains how God is to be found and embraced in the midst of the battle itself, hence the title. On a deeper level, this book can be read in terms of the various and differing struggles of every man, every woman. Though the content and configurations of temptation may vary, the dynamic at work is much the same, as is the process of divine redemption, whereby God reclaims even such realms as these if one allows him access. Joseph Nicolosi commends this work: ‘It is often the wounded healers—when they are open about the frailty that often attends victory—who go on to live the boldest and most victorious lives.’ Andy is a wounded healer — hence his authenticity, appeal and profundity.

Christl Ruth Vonholdt, ed., Striving for Gender Identity: Homosexuality and Christian Counselling: A Workbook for the Church (1996/2004 (rpt); The Reichenberg Fellowship, Reichelsheim, Germany;
In this very helpful workbook, several issues are covered in some depth: Toward a Biblical Anthropology; Understanding the Homosexual Orientation; Biology and Human Behavior; The Gay and Lesbian Agenda or: Is Homosexuality Desirable?; and Coming Out of Homosexuality. Contributors come from both North American and European contexts, which bring an added depth to the collection, as does the fact that both research and pastoral care perspectives are represented. Contributors include Joseph Nicolosi, Jeffrey Satinover, Frank Worthen, Richard Cohen, Dennis Prager, Charles Socarides and Gerard van den Aardweg, as well as the editor herself.

Joseph Nicolosi and Linda Ames Nicolosi, A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality (ISBN: 0-8308-2379-4) 2002.
From InterVarsity Press’(the publishers) website:
‘In this groundbreaking book Joseph and Linda Ames Nicolosi uncover the most significant factors that contribute to a child’s healthy sense of self as male or female. Listening to moving recollections from ex-homosexual men and women who describe what was missing in their own childhoods, the Nicolosis provide clear insight for identifying potential developmental roadblocks and give practical advice to parents for helping their children securely identify with their gender.’ As a psychotherapist of some 25 years, Dr. Nicolosi has worked with over 1,000 men with unwanted SSA and is currently president of NARTH (National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality, CA, USA).

William Webb, Slaves, Women & Homosexuals: Exploring the Hermeneutics Of Cultural Analysis (ISBN: 0-8308-1561-9) 2001.

Using what he terms the ‘redemptive movement hermeneutic’, William Webb seeks to demonstrate that the biblical view on issues of slavery and women is fundamentally different from that used in relation to homosexual practice. He also deals with matters of complementarity versus egalitarianism in the dynamic between the sexes and opts for either ‘ultra-soft patriarchy or complementary egalitarianism and inter-dependence [and] mutuality’.

Joni Eareckson Tada, When God Weeps: Why Our Sufferings Matter to the Almighty (ISBN: 0-8027-2768-9) 1997.
This is one of the most profound books I have read on theodicy and suffering, the ways – often inscrutable – of the Almighty in relation to his broken world and his children in pain. It ventures to go where few are willing or able to go. Moreover, in that Joni has lived what she writes – and lived it for decades now – it is both plausible and persuasive. As many who struggle with homosexuality have worrying concerns on these matters, it could prove very helpful. I know that Christian disability groups who support those with heavy crosses to bear (though of types which differ from unwanted SSA) have found it so.

Sebastian Moore, Homosexuality and the End of the Journey: Reflections on ‘Alexis’ by Marguerite Yourcenar (UK; The Guild of Pastoral Psychology; Guild Lecture 258:
[Lecture Pamphlets series 1997->]
Written by Dom Sebastian Moore, a monk, educator and thinker, these ‘Reflections’ provide a fascinating window into the psyche of a SSA man who leaves his wife for the gay lifestyle. For Dom Moore, ‘it is therefore misleading to say that the homosexual, certainly Alexis, falls in love with a man as a heterosexual falls in love with a woman. A quite different dynamic is at work here. It is the dynamic of sudden self-recovery rather than self-discovery in love … It has the power of revelation, of being at last allowed to be the man he is and has been forbidden to think of himself as. It is his ‘man’ returned from exile … This permission to be really someone, when he already is, conventionally [above italics his], someone, has to be momentous, a flash of revelation. And a flash is just that. It does not last.’

R.T. France, A Slippery Slope? The Ordination of Women and Homosexual Practice- a Case Study in Biblical Interpretation Grove Biblical Series (ISBN: 1-85174-434-7) 2000.

Dick France argues that ‘in attempting to be guided by the Bible we find (even within the constraints of space of this booklet) a significantly different situation with regard to the ordination of women from that with regard to homosexuality. In the former we are confronted with a tension between two strands of biblical material which appear to lead us in different directions. …But in the case of homosexual behaviour there seems to be no such divergence in the biblical witness, and so no comparable hermeneutical decision to be made. There is instead a consistent, if limited, pattern of biblical teaching and example which indicates that homosexual activity, whoever loving and well-motivated, is not in accordance with God’s design for his human creation.’

Mark Bonnington and Bob Fyall, Homosexuality and the Bible Grove Biblical Series (ISBN: 1 85174 326 X) 1998.

Authors Mark Bonnington and Bob Fyall helpfully explore relevant biblical materials from both the Old and New Testaments in relation to same-sex issues and present practical, pastorally-sensitive ideas for handling them and those struggling with them. Included in this eirenically-written piece are the following topics: ‘Two Revisionist Strategies’, ‘Is Leviticus Relevant?’, ‘Sex and Grace’, ‘Judgment and Judgmentalism’, ‘the Link with Idolatry’ and ‘Nature and Culture’. They improve the often-quoted ‘Love the sinner, hate the sin’ to ‘Love one another as sinners, help one another not to sin’. Though simply written, it is a good base for thinking through and discussing these issues