http://www.advocate.com/commentary/2013/09/16/op-ed-its-time-rethink-religion

Read this article posted on advocate.com today. It’s moving. It’s inspirational. It brings hope. If you’re religious, read this article. If you are not religious, read this article.

It is about a young gay man as a reformed Jew that has dealt with hatred, cruel jokes, and the worse for his sexual orientation.

“However, when I heard the cantor laugh at a gay character on TV, I was devastated. By the time of my bar mitzvah, I realized that all was not well in my world. The all-boys Jewish high school I attended made its stance on homosexuality clear — it was wrong. Words like “abhorrent,” “disgusting,” and “repugnant” were used to describe homosexuality by the same rabbis I had looked up to. During a gap year between high school and university, I attended an Orthodox yeshiva (where students study sacred texts) in the heart of Jerusalem. I heard shocking remarks and jokes about homosexuality, often from the same teachers who preached tolerance and love of humanity. On the other hand, flirtatious homosexual behavior and activity were commonplace at the school.”

These are only some of the scarring events that Mark Goldman was faced with. Although he has been through trying times, he has found solace in his religion.

“All too often, LGBT people have similar negative childhood experiences within their own faith. “Religion” is almost a dirty word, perhaps defining one as a self-hater or, just as bad, a mindless philistine who believes in ridiculously implausible fairy tales.”

Thankfully Goldman has found a new way to look at his religion. Not only is he a believer in Judaism, but he is the president of the American Conference of Cantors, holding a position of power in the name of his faith.

If there is one misconception wrong, it is that gay people cannot be religious, believe in God, or attend church.

Separate Church and Hate!

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