Journal of Religious Ethics 41 (4):601-625 (2013)

John Anderson
University of Johannesburg
Many Protestant denominations have or recently had policies that prohibit “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” from being ordained. By only prohibiting “practicing” homosexuals, proponents of these policies claim that they do not discriminate against homosexuals as a group since, technically, a homosexual can still be ordained as long as she is “non-practicing.” In other words, a condemnation of homosexual practice is not the same as a condemnation of homosexual persons. I argue that this is not the case; the rhetoric of homosexual practice does, in fact, amount to a condemnation of gays and lesbians. It does so by conflating the two things it claims to keep separate—homosexual conduct and homosexual identity. I demonstrate this conflation by analyzing the history of this rhetoric and how it has been adjudicated in church court decisions from the United Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church (USA)
Keywords Presbyterian Church (USA)  Protestantism  United Methodist Church  homosexuality  ordination
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/jore.12034
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 65,581
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Eschatology, Anthropology, and Sexuality.James M. Childs - 2010 - Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics 30 (1):3-20.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
28 ( #396,455 of 2,461,762 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #448,599 of 2,461,762 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes