Bishop Accused of Hate Speech in “Death to Gays” Controversy

August 4, 2015

Bishop Vitus Huonder

A Swiss bishop is facing criticism for quoting a Leviticus passage used against gay people in a recent address on marriage, criticism that could result in hate speech charges.

Bishop Vitus Huonder of Chur was addressing traditionalist Catholics at the “Joy in Faith” forum in Germany last Friday when he made the controversial remarks. SwissInfo reported:

“Regarding homosexuality, the 73-year-old bishop quoted two verses from the book of Leviticus, including Leviticus 20:13: ‘If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.’

“In response to applause, he continued: ‘Both of these passages alone suffice to clarify unambiguously the church’s position on homosexuality’.”

Huonder’s address, “Marriage: A Gift, Sacrament and Order,” also attacked gender theory, divorce, sex education, and marriage equality. He claimed that “no diversity” exists in families and continued,”Even speaking of family diversity is an attack on the Creator.” The full address in German is available here.

Facing criticism, the bishop apologized in a statement on Monday, denying any contempt towards lesbian and gay people and saying he is sorry if comments were misunderstood.

Still, LGBT advocates are sustaining their public criticism of a bishop whose anti-LGBT record is notable.

Pink Cross, an LGBT group in Switzerland, is investigating whether Huonder could be prosecuted for hate speech after stating their “shock and anger” at the bishop’s remarks. 360.ch, a Swiss LGBT magazine, drew parallels to a knife attack at Jerusalem’s Pride Parade that happened only the day before, writing:

“It was in the name of these same Bible passages that a Jewish extremist stabbed six people.”

This is not Huonder’s first citation of Levitical law in relation to homosexuality, reported TheLocal.ch. He did so during a March speech to young priests in the diocese. In February, he came close to punishing a priest who had blessed a same-gender couple. In 2011, he argued against sex education because it would destroy children’s sense of shame.

Even with his record, did Bishop Huonder advocate the death penalty for gay people? Technically, he never explicitly did so, but his irresponsible language makes it very easy for others to interpret that he did.

His comments reveal a stunning fundamentalism for a Catholic bishop who should be otherwise educated. It is simplistic to suggest any single passage from Scriptures suffices to support or explain Catholic teaching, especially on a matter as complex as homosexuality.

Contemporary Scripture scholarship makes clear these passages from Leviticus and other “clobber texts” used to condemn homosexuality are not actually speaking of homosexuality as it is understood today in light of modern science and theological methods. The use of “abomination,” also applied for eating shellfish and other prohibitions since jettisoned by Christians, was a cultural marker that helped the Hebrews differentiate their people from others in the region.

The fact that Huonder’s chosen passage includes reference to the death penalty elevates his comment from ignorant to absurd and  dangerous. Whether or not Huonder’s remarks constitute hate speech in a legal setting will be determined. We can conclude his remarks are utterly deprived of mercy and respect.

I wrote several weeks ago about a post-marriage agenda for the Catholic Church that focuses on ending the shedding of Christ’s blood given that LGBT people are frequently wounded and killed, and wrote:

“No one should oppose loving youths who, while journeying to find their truest selves, often suffer deep pain and face rejection. No one should support criminalizing homosexuality, even if they consider same-sex acts morally wrong, and certainly the church has a clear voice against the death penalty. No one should think discriminating against a person on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is consistent with Christ’s inclusive witness. And no one, anywhere, should justify the murder or rape of a trans* person as consistent with God’s will or the church’s teaching. No one.”

And yet, Bishop Huonder seems opposed to these types of initiatives and instead seems to actively work against ending injustice when he irresponsibly employs Scripture and church teaching.  The pastoral implications of a bishop preaching dangerous words are severe, providing cover for those prejudiced against LGBT people who may enact discrimination and violence as a result.

What is needed now is at least one concrete act by Bishop Huonder to reconcile with LGBT people. May God provide him the wisdom and courage to do so very soon.

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


Lesbian Educator Comes Out At End of Twenty Year Career in Catholic Education

August 3, 2015

Joan Grundy with her new book, A Deepening Life

After nearly twenty years in Catholic education, Joan Grundy is coming out as a lesbian in her just released autobiography. In the book, A Deepening Life, she tells of being a lesbian employee in Canada’s Catholic schools and shares the quiet ways she helped create change.

Grundy has been a vice-principal at St. Mary’s Catholic High School in Kitchener, Ontario before retiring this year in pursuit of other interests and greater authenticity. In a CTV report, Grundy is clear that working for a Catholic school kept her fearful of being out, but decided to make the revelation at age 54:

” ‘I’d been peeking out of it for quite a while, and it was good to kick that darn door open, right off its hinges…I probably would have been a little bit more vocal earlier, it’s safe to say, had I not been in the Catholic board.’ “

Grundy said she could never been “openly gay in a public way” to students, co-workers, and even her parents for fear of losing her job, even as she privately supported LGBTQ students. In fact, Grundy is clear it took her until she was already teaching and 33 to come out to herself. This situation is tough for church workers she said:

“I talk in my book about walking a tightrope, and I think many senior administrators in Catholic boards walk those same tightropes, because, again, we’re contracted and we need to abide by the official teachings of the church, and it’s not always easy.”

Being in the closet brought shame for Grundy, shame which is “not of God” but rather is “quite suffocating for the soul.” It also “haunted” her that she was encouraging students to be themselves and not doing the same, reported the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Still, the former vice-principal decided she could not abandon the LGBTQ youth in Catholic schools according to The Hamilton Spectator:

“I went into teaching to make a difference in kids’ lives and to turn my back on them didn’t feel right…These students resonate with me. We have a shared experience of pain and hurt. . .

“I have never doubted that God loves me and created me as a gay woman. That is foundational for me…My spirituality is pivotal in how I live. And for those young people, I want them to know they are loved by God, celebrated by God and accepted by God.”

Her biggest push for these students came in 2012, after the regional government mandated all schools, including religious ones, to support LGBTQ students. Grundy came out as gay in a meeting of Catholic school administrators, emphasizing the tremendous harm, sometimes leading to suicides, happening to too many teens.

At St. Mary’s H.S., she introduced the Kindness Matters program to promote fair treatment and helped bring gay alumni back to speak to current students.  She also helped by counseling youth.

In this next step of her life, Grundy hopes to  help expand teacher training around inclusivitiy, while at the same time supporting LGBT educators, whom she describes as “wounded healers.” She hopes that by opening discussion will encourage more LGBT educators to be out and make students feel safer in schools, particularly Catholic ones where “there’s a lot of fear, a lot of vulnerability.”

Joan Grundy’s story is one that is simultaneously laudatory and similar to so many LGBT church workers who quietly come to the aid of marginalized groups in Catholic schools, parishes, and other institutions. Her fears of being fired for her sexual identity or for having a same-gender relationship exposed are as real. And perpetuating such fear is antithetical to the Gospel.

Grundy’s journey is also a reminder of Scripture’s wisdom that there is an anointed time for all things and that each of us must live our journey to authenticity on our own time, faithful to God’s call for us in each moment.

What is resoundingly clear now is that, for our church, the time has come to end these firings and for schools to say “no more” to discrimination, instead valuing more and more the contributions of church workers like Grundy. Our church is greatly indebted to them, so to Joan and to all who faithfully serve, we say thank you!

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


London Cardinal Urges Nationwide Expansion of LGBT Catholic Masses

August 1, 2015

LGBT Catholics Westminster pilgrims with New Ways Ministry pilgrims in Rome earlier this year

Masses in London which offer an intentional welcome to the LGBT community should be expanded across England, Westminster’s (London) Cardinal Vincent Nichols is recommending.

This endorsement of these welcoming Masses comes via Fr. Keith Barltrop, the Catholic official tasked with LGBTQI outreach for the Archdiocese of Westminster.   The liturgies take place twice a month at London’s Church of the Immaculate Conception, overseen by the Jesuits, and located on Farm Street, by which the parish is familiarly known. Baltrop’s comments were reported by The Tablet:

“. . .[T]he cardinal would like to see the Farm Street Masses as a model for other parishes in his archdiocese. He added that the idea could be taken up by parishes in other dioceses.”

This desire for expansion comes two years after the “Soho Masses” were moved to the Farm Street Church at the cardinal’s request, a move which caused some concern at the time, but one now bearing fruit it seems. The Tablet explained:

“Key to the transition was that the Farm Street Masses are an extension of the diocese’s pastoral care for gay people. LGBT Catholics join the regular congregation at the 6.15 p.m. Mass on Sunday evenings twice a month and meet afterwards for a social gathering in the parish hall.”

The pastoral shift here is significant. Instead of fostering separate communities for LGBT and ally Catholics, this model seeks to fold them into regular parish life, while still providing a preferential welcome as well.

According to Martin Pendergast of the LGBT Catholics Westminster Pastoral Council, expansion depends on parishioners’ initiative and is one among several efforts to include all. The Council is also preparing a briefing paper that LGBT Catholics hope will appear at the 2015 Synod of Bishops by way of England’s delegates, Cardinal Nichols and Northampton Bishop Peter Doyle. Language is key to the Council’s requests:

“A major line of argument in the paper, he said, would be a move to encourage the Vatican to undertake a “serious review” of the vocabulary it used in relation to homosexuality.

” ‘Two terms which have been used by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in regard to homosexuality are ‘objective disorder’ and ‘intrinsic moral disorder. . .But these are inaccurate and theologically quite inappropriate – and the people who are most hurt by this sort of language are the parents of children who come out as gay. What does it mean to them to hear their children described in those terms?’ “

In June, LGBT Catholics Westminster participated in London Pride as a registered parade group. Cardinal Nichols called this an “opportunity for evangelization,” reports The Stream.

In February, LGBT Catholics from Farm Street celebrated Mass in Rome with New Ways Ministry’s pilgrims who were there during the same week. (See photo above.)

A recent editorial from The Tablet affirmed Nichols’ desire for expanded LGBT-focused Masses and stated “the Gospel must point the way on gay issues.” Calling same-gender marriage “something of a distraction in this debate,” it continued:

“Treating gays and lesbians with equal dignity and respect does not depend on being for or against gay marriage. Cardinal Nichols is a good example of that position, as is Pope Francis himself. Indeed, the new chief executive of the gay campaigning body Stonewall, Ruth Hunt, who is Catholic, told The Tablet that changing attitudes, not legislation, was now her prime concern.”

Hunt said Masses explicitly welcoming LGBT Catholics are necessary because of the “ever-widening chasm” between faithful Catholics and church institutions which reject them. Hunt, who is a lesbian Catholic herself, has previously said something must be done about faith communities which do “significant damage to people’s mental health” while silencing LGBT-inclusive religious leaders.

This is Fr. Barltorp’s second positive statement on LGBT issues in as many weeks, adding to Cardinal Nichols’ growing positive record on LGBT issues.

Last week, Barltrop said there was nothing doctrinal about one’s gender identity and the church would be “fully supportive” of those who transition after careful discernment. Barltrop responded to traditionalist critics, saying one website was the Catholic “equivalent of Islamic fundamentalism” and underscored that there is no teaching on transgender identities.

Cardinal Nichols’ desire for expanded LGBT-focused Masses is on point, especially when some church leaders choose to discriminate against these communities and deny Catholics participation in the sacraments based on who they are or whom they love. Such Masses should not stop at English shores, but indeed they should be expanded around the world!

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


Bishops Down Under Offer Over-the-Top Rhetoric as Marriage Equality Approaches

July 28, 2015

Australia’s marriage equality campaign logo

Australia’s political leaders are slowly moving towards marriage equality, prompted by successful developments in Ireland and the United States. The political movement has prompted aggressive action from the nation’s Catholic bishops.

Brisbane’s Archbishop Mark Coleridge attacked marriage equality proponents in a piece for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, saying there is “violence” in alleged attempts to discredit and silence those who oppose equality.

Using the language of “same-sex attracted,” Coleridge argued that civil equality already existed, and the push for marriage rights is pure ideology. He called it “a dramatic form of the Western myth of progress which the facts of history have never confirmed,” reported The Tablet.

Sydney’s Archbishop Anthony Fisher used equally harsh language during a Marriage Mass, reported The Catholic Herald. His told those in attendance that LGBT advocates:

“…are determined to silence any alternative to the politically correct position in this matter; to bully us all into accepting the deconstruction and redefinition of a fundamental institution; and to relegate questions of what marriage is and is for as secondary to an homogenising ‘equality.’ “

The Archdiocese of Sydney also criticized those responsible for a full-page pro-marriage equality ad published in June, questioning whether corporations should be involved in the debate at all. In a letter sent to the ad’s more than 150 corporate supporters, the archdiocesan business manager Michael Digges claims they “are publicly supporting a strategic, political and well-funded campaign” to change Australian marriage law.

Elsewhere, Archbishop Julian Porteous of Hobart, who distributed an anti-marriage equality pamphlet by sending it home  with students in Australia’s Catholic schools, has admitted it has not been well received.

That is an understatement given the concerns expressed by many when it was first announced that the bishops were using schoolchildren as young as 6 or 7 for the anti-equality campaign. Rodney Croome, director of Australian Marriage Equality, condemned making these children “couriers of prejudice,” urging parents to report the material to the Office of Anti-Discrimination Commissioner. One letter to the archbishop claims a formal complaint was filed, reported The Australian, and the Office does not deny this.

Still, Porteous defended the “Don’t Mess with Marriage” pamphlet as a “positive contribution” and part of his duties as bishop in teaching the faith, reports SBS.

A former teacher in Melbourne also wrote recently about Archbishop Denis Hart’s 2007 refusal to implement Jesuit Social Services’ Not So Straight report, “aimed at helping teachers respond to the needs of gay teens in Catholic schools. Michael Kelly wrote in The Age:

“I wonder how many students in Catholic schools have spent anguished hours coping with abuse and bullying, how many have secretly hated themselves, how many have attempted suicide since Hart buried that report in 2007. . .The Jesuits’ programs would not have solved everything, but they would have shown a church, and a hierarchy, that cared more for the mental, physical, spiritual and emotional health of young people than for rigid doctrinal purity.”

Bishop Geoffrey Robinson

Bishop Geoffrey Robinson

The Australian bishops should follow the lead and example of one of their own brethren, Bishop Geoffrey Robinson, retired Auxiliary from Sydney, who has spoken rationally and compassionately on the need for the hierarchy to reform Catholic sexual ethics in such a way that allows for the equality of lesbian and gay relationships.

Politically, Australian legislators will introduce a cross-party bill equalizing marriage rights in August. This has a fairly good chance of passage, though it is uncertain. Either way the bishops need to shift course towards a more pastoral and reconciliatory approach.

Australia’s bishops should start putting the best interests of young people, and all Australians, before their campaign against LGBT legal rights. The heavy-handed and hyperbolic strategies of previous papacies must be put to rest, and the only overreactions now acceptable are unconditioned displays of love to those the church has harmed.

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


Ireland’s Top Bishop Meets with Gay Advocates, Withdraws Marriage Boycott Threat

July 27, 2015

Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh

Ireland’s leading archbishop met with faith-based LGBT advocates last week, with the focus of the discussing being on his participation at the Synod of Bishops this fall, and keeping Ireland’s marriage referendum clearly as a backdrop for the conversation.

Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh, the Primate of Ireland, met with representatives from Faith in Marriage Equality (an ecumenical group) and We Are Church (a Roman Catholic church reform group) organizations at his residence last Wednesday. The meeting was requested by the groups before the May referendum in which equal marriage was approved by nearly two-thirds of Irish voters.

At the October synod in Rome, Martin will represent the Irish church alongside Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin. The LGBT advocates at the meeting with Eamon Martin asked him to raise the pastoral care of gay and lesbian persons, sharing some of their own stories which were well received.

Brendan Butler of We Are the Church, a Catholic reform organization, highlighted the harm the church’s language inflicts on LGBT people.  He singled out for particular mention, the language in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s 1986 letter, which described a homosexual orientation as “an objective disorder and ordered towards an intrinsic moral evil.”   Butler stated:

“If the Catholic Church is to regain credibility not only with the gay and lesbian community but also with the wider Catholic community then existing Catholic teaching needs to change.”

Jim O’Crowley, a gay Catholic, also shared stories in the meeting, following up on a booklet, “To Have and To Hold: Stories and Reflections of LGBT People, Their Families, and Friends,” the archbishop was sent. According to Irish Central, Martin said “he found it helpful to read this book and also to listen to accounts by gay Catholics.”

Faith in Marriage Equality’s Richard O’Leary affirmed the meeting as a “positive step to open dialogue,” building upon Diarmuid Martin’s call for a “reality check” by church leaders in the wake of Ireland’s referendum. O’Leary added:

“We were positively received by Archbishop Martin who said he was committed to continuing dialogue and that he was particularly concerned about the pastoral care of gay persons.”

Martin’s record is increasingly positive on LGBT issues. He publicly criticized Cardinal Raymond Burke’s characterization of the Irish as “worse than pagans” for voting for marriage equality, saying he “wouldn’t use that language.” Preceding the vote, his record was more mixed having said religious liberty was being threatened but also publicly critiquing a fellow bishop who compared homosexuality to Down’s Syndrome.

In addition, the Irish bishops had threatened that priests would no longer grant civil marriages if the referendum passed. Now, Archbishop Martin is second-guessing that stance, reported The Independent, saying church leaders would “monitor the situation to see if it’s possible for us to continue.”

The Association of Catholic Priest’s Fr. Gerry O’Connor said ending priests’ role in marriage was always a “false threat” used against voters. He noted that it would be deeply troubling to do so because it would curtail one of the church’s limited avenues with younger Catholics who comprise the majorities of weddings, while also being largely absent from churches otherwise.

After the Irish referendum in May, commentators from all quarters speculated about the impact the vote had and would continue to have on not only the Irish Church, but the Catholic Church globally.

Archbishop Martin’s meeting may be a first fruit, incarnating the culture of encounter called for repeatedly by Pope Francis but which is still too often denied to LGBT Catholics. Sharing stories and personal relationships have been instrumental in advancing equality, inside the church and out, and their importance will remain to keep shifting culture even as legal rights advance.

Let us pray that Archbishops Martin and Martin will listen attentively to the voices of Irish Catholics, bearing their desires for greater justice and inclusion to the synod in Rome for all the church to hear!

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


Historically Catholic Nations Lead on Transgender & Intersex Civil Rights

July 25, 2015

Italy’s Palace of Justice

UPDATE: Poland’s parliament passed a bill allowing easier gender identity changes, though these still require “confirmation” from two external sources. Still, it is being hailed as a positive step by advocates. It needs to pass the Senate and receive the President’s signature for it to be enacted, reports PinkNews.

Transgender Italians can now self-declare their gender identity on government records following a recent court ruling.

This progress is yet another sign of how historically Catholic nations are increasingly leading the expansion of rights for trans and intersex communities, as well as gay, lesbian and bisexual ones.

Italy’s Supreme Court ruled that a person may amend their gender identity on records without medical intervention, saying the “right to self-determination is inviolable.” The ruling recognizes the complexities in each person’s life according to Gay Star News, stating:

“The desire to align body and spirit is, even in the absence of surgical intervention, the result of a very personal journey to gender identity, supported by a range of medical and psychological treatments that will vary according to individual personality and need.”

Ireland’s parliament acted similarly in June passing a bill that affords citizens to self-determine their gender, coming only weeks after Irish voters passed marriage equality according to Buzzfeed. Momentum from the marriage referendum caused legislators to remove a clause in the bill that would have required medical permission for any gender marker changes. GLAAD reports the bill should be active by summer’s end.

Malta’s legislature unanimously passed a trans rights law this spring. The Gender Identity, Gender Expression, and Sex Characteristics law is considered a gold standard by many LGBT advocates, as it includes nondiscrimination protections and defends intersex children by allowing delayed gender identification on birth records. Dr. Helena Dalli, minister for civil liberties, said the law is “for knowledge to reign over ignorance, for justice to reign over injustice and to build a society on the respect of human rights.”

Italy, Ireland, and Malta join only Denmark, Colombia, and Argentina in allowing transgender citizens to self-determine their gender identity on government records. That five of these nations are heavily Catholics proves again what has been witnessed in the expansion of lesbian and gay civil rights, including marriage: where there are Catholics, there’s a strong likelihood for more justice for LGBT communities.

Regarding transgender justice, which is rapidly emerging in social consciousness in the United States and elsewhere, much work remains.

Most nations which allow gender changes require proof of gender confirmation surgery and there are still plenty of hierarchs, like San Francisco’s Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone or Bishop-Elect Robert Barron of Los Angeles, making highly prejudiced comments. Even Pope Francis’ record is unclear, though some trans advocates see more signs for hope than previously thought.

One more sign of hope are church leaders like Msgr. Keith Barltrop who come out supportively for trans identities. Barltrop, who is London Cardinal Vincent Nichols’ point person on LGBTQI outreach recently said the church should be “fully supportive” of those who decide to transition and there is nothing doctrinal involved with trans identities.

For more updates on trans Catholic issues, check out our “Transgender” category in the column to the right.  New Ways Ministry will be hosting a workshop about Catholic perspectives on trans and intersex issues in Philadelphia during the World Meeting of Families in September.  For more information, click here.

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


Kenyan Catholic Bishops Warn Obama: Stay Silent on LGBT Rights During Visit

July 17, 2015

Kenya’s bishops during their ad limina visit with Pope Francis

Keep silent on LGBT rights. This is the message Kenyan Catholic bishops have sent to U.S. President Barack Obama in the days before his planned July visit, a belief shared by their continental colleagues, and a belief increasingly at odds with Pope Francis’ vision for the church.

Bishop Philip Anyolo of Homa Bay, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops’ president, said the bishops “are not going to allow same-sex marriage” and debate should end.

Presenting a different reason for not focusing on the marriage topic was Fr. Russell Pollitt, SJ, director of the Jesuit Institute in South Africa, told the Catholic Sentinel:

” ‘There are far more pressing issues’ than same-sex marriage that the church in Africa needs to address…It will be ‘sad and a missed opportunity if the focus of Obama’s visit is narrow…’ “

Such concerns about the topic have arisen largely due to the Supreme Court’s June decision to enact equal marriage rights nationwide, celebrated by President Obama by lighting up the White House in rainbow colors on the night of the ruling.

Bishops in Nigeria weighed in on the Court’s marriage decision, which allegedly threatens Africa because of Western cultures massive influence on nations there. They called marriage equality’s global expansion:

“a sad, unjust and lamentable situation based largely upon a distorted perception of natural law, the will of God and human nature.”

Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria president, Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama, added that decriminalizing homosexuality leads to the “festering of the homosexual culture/sub-culture” as he claims is happening in Mozambique, reported Leadership. Nigerian legislators recently passed a law, supported by 87% of citizens according to GLAAD, that sentences couples to fourteen years in prison for marrying.

This resistance to Obama’s visit and the advancement of LGBT equality is a stark reminder post-Obergefell that much work remains in ensuring justice for all people. The Guardian’s Observer column writes:

“[The bishops’ warnings] serve as a chilling reminder that, globally, the war for LGBTI rights is being fought on two fronts. . .across much of the Middle East, Africa and Russia, the fight takes a crueller [sic] form: for the right not to suffer criminal punishment for exercising the right to love whomever one wishes.

“Across most of Africa, same-sex relationships remain illegal and public attitudes towards homosexuality are the most negative in the world.”

Indeed, as some countries advance, others regress. At least 34 African nations criminalize homosexuality and in places like Uganda, there has been much debate over enhancing such laws to even include the death penalty.

African bishops should better inform themselves about the realities of LGBT existence in their communities before speaking any further on the topic. While nations there face issues related to poverty, climate change, and other papal themes, they must also address as entirely inconsistent with the Gospel the violence and discrimination instigated because of victims’ sexual orientation or gender identity. All of these are “pressing” issues.

Endorsing same-gender marriage may be too much to ask, but preserving the life and the dignity of all people, especially those most marginalized, must become a core part of these bishops’ response to LGBT communities.

Kenya’s bishops were not alone in telling Obama to stay silent on LGBT rights, having been joined by other religious and political leaders. But Catholic bishops in Africa should do better. They could start by looking to Pope Francis in moderating their opposition and striking a different, indeed prophetic tone of inclusion, mercy, dialogue, encounter, and welcome instead.

–Bob Shine, New Ways Ministry


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