City Ordinance: Austin Churches Must Hire Homosexual, Transexual Pastors

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The "Houston Equal Rights Ordinance" (HERO) battle lasted a year in which the city was taken to court and the lengthy arguments resulted in an order for a city-wide referendum in November 2015. The measure was rejected by a 61- to 39-percent vote, killing the ordinance. (Pat Sullivan/AP photo)

After Houston rejected similar measures three years ago, churches in Austin may be forced to hire homosexual and transgender pastors and ministers due to a city ordinance.

Ground zero in the turmoil because of non-discrimination reforms that fail to protect religious and moral objections to sinful lifestyles has shifted to Austin.

The city’s leaders passed an employment discrimination ordinance much like 2015’s “HERO” measure in Houston, prohibiting decisions against hiring based on sexual orientation and gender identity in addition to other reasons.

The ordinance provides no limit to enforcement against churches that decide against hiring of homosexuals and transsexuals on moral and religious grounds.

Not even pastoral and other leadership positions at churches are excluded from possible city oversight and regulatory management in the capital of Texas.

Dozens of Texas churches that are members of the U.S. Pastor Council (USPC) are represented by a federal lawsuit filed earlier this month, following the Houston pattern of possibly a long battle in the courts.

Your next church pastor? In Austin, a city ordinance would force non-discrimination on the basis of homosexuality and transgender beliefs if the prospective hire claims to be a member of the church’s denomination. (Yahoo News photo)

“Every church in Austin that refuses to hire practicing homosexuals as clergy or church employees is violating city law and subject to civil penalties and liability,” the filing, U.S. Pastor Council v. Austin, reads.

“The City of Austin’s failure to exempt church hiring decisions . . . violates the U.S. Constitution, the Texas Constitution and the Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act.”

In Houston, a tough legal struggle ended in the ordinance being placed on a ballot for a referendum vote noted as the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance or HERO.

“Houston is ground zero on this,” Steven Hotze of Conservative Republicans of Texas said in the weeks leading up to the vote.

“If Houston falls and Texas falls to the homosexual political movement on this issue, the country is gone.”

Houston pastor Dr. Ed Young said, “This is a moral issue, and if the body of Christ does not vote and speak out, we are gone in the 21st Century.”

The voters of Democrat-Party-majority Houston rejected the ordinance 61- to 39-percent, prompting Houston’s lesbian mayor, Annise Parker, to respond with mournful accusations against the organized effort to defeat it.

God loves us all, including homosexuals and transgender people. But that does not mean sinners who celebrate their sin should lead a church

“This was a campaign of fear mongering and deliberate lies,” Parker said. “This isn’t misinformation, but a calculated campaign of lies designed to demonize a little-understood minority.”

Christian Action Network Chairman David Carroll researched the situation in Texas and responded with a detailed commentary report that exposes the case and its potential impact on religious exemptions in general.

“The secular war against Christianity continues apace,” Carroll concluded. In Austin, “unlike federal and various state non-discrimination laws, there is no exemption for churches.

“All Christians I know strongly believe in the “love-the-sinner, hate-the-sin” principle,” Carroll added.

“God loves us all, including homosexuals and transgender people. But that does not mean sinners who celebrate sinning should lead a church.”

Carroll, an attorney, said that the U.S. Constitution, the Texas Constitution and religious freedom acts at the state and federal level have an impact, but the outcome for churches in Austin is uncertain. See Carroll’s case summary here

“It is by no means a slam-dunk,” Carroll said.

UPDATE:

Forcing Churches to Hire Homosexual, Transgender Ministers Will Go National

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27 COMMENTS

  1. It is false that God sees all sin the same. There is one unforgivable sin – blaspheming the Holy Spirit. That is quite obviously the worst sin. Christ stated the Pharisees tithed mint and cumin while neglecting “weightier matters”. Weightier means more important, not precisely the same importance.

    People waxing self righteously indignant in support of wildly filthy behavior are channeling the very spirit of Sodom. The Sodomites complained of Lot judging them as well.

    This is a truly pathetic generation of Americans. Men will wax worse and worse indeed.

  2. As an atheist, I dont buy in to heresy, sin, or even morality, but this is going a bit too far. You have your moral beliefs and the city is trying to force you to go against that? What happened to freedom of religion? This isnt a McDonalds job, but something that people take seriously in their lives. Shouldnt your moral leaders at least adhere to your morality? I can only wish you guys the best of luck in your fight.

    • Larry, I appreciate that you stand with the faith community.

      However, I do ask you if you really do not but in on morality. The simple fact that you are staying you agree with the faith community shows you are moralistic to some degree.

      I’m also guessing you’re not favorable to murdering people for no reason. That is a moralistic stand.

    • Larry, appreciate you stepping up for the faith community.

      I do wonder whether you really are somewhat moralistic though. One, you agreed with a moral in staying Support and figure you’re against murder

  3. These clowns are behaving like the Ninth Circus and the Colorado “Civil Rights Commission” – which, incidentally, is going after Jack Bishop again. Eventually the SCOTUS will affirm the First Amendment but until then these intrinsically disordered deviants are empowered by their master Lucifer and they are intent on making life hell for anyone who does not embrace their sin. All must remain vigilant against these attacks whose frequency is only going to increase not abate.

  4. IDENTIFYING as a Homosexual or Tran-sexual Disqualifies one from being a Pastor according to the Bible.
    If they are FORMER Homosexuals or FORMER Tran-sexuals then can be pastors.

    As Christians we IDENTIFY ourselves in Christ not the world and as such place our desires aside for the service of the Lord.
    ANYTHING else is perversion of the word of God and Disqualifies them Immediately as a pastor.

  5. If there is so much misunderstanding of God’s word in America today and disagreement, we should all be praying for God to return. God Himself will have the final answer. Soon I hope!

  6. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” 1st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. There is no mention of any homosexual “rights”.

  7. EASY…Don’t hire anyone.

    As The Good Shepherd sacrificed himself to bring us the law of love, so too should the worldly representation of pastoral duty be a labor of love.

  8. It helps a lot to understand that in almost all true cases of gender alteration and many cases of same sex attraction it is an endocrine disruption and/or dna mutation injury that is underlying. Ie., this is a birth defect or post birth injury that these people did not choose. Many chemicals today are endocrine disruptors and/or mutate gene’s to mix up a baby’s gender characteristics. (These statements do not include “cis” cross dressers or heterosexual people who choose for entertainment to behave such.)
    Does is not seem proper that any person’s eligibility for leadership might not be based on their injuries, but upon their moral Scriptural lifestyle choices and other relevant Biblical qualifications and call, regardless of injured/altered circumstances? For many of gendet altered persons that translates to a celibate life. This usually a huge disappointment for a young person. These people need our understanding and support, and opportunities to serve in the single capacity.

    A fine example of a same sex attracted person fulfilling a leadership role in his church appears to be Sam Allberry, a catholic priest, who chose a celibate lifestyle and also has a ministry to similarly encourage other same same sex affected persons.

    Hermaphrodite/intersex/transgender persons in nearly every true case have sustained an unasked injury and may face serious decisions regarding God’s plan for their lives. But is not the issue their morality lifestyle, gifts and Biblical calling, not their gender related injuries that are the qualifiers, as for anyone else?

    Unfortunately some of the more public sexual offenders/perpetrators in our society have turned out to be person in places of leadership in our protestant and catholic churches, the pastors, televangelists, youth leaders and priests. Surely we need to remove the log in our own eyes before we pick on those in these gender affected communities who do live commendable lifestyles and who are gifted to serve in Biblical capacities in the Church of God.

    Chemicals recognized to disrupt and mutate gender development and attraction include many pesticides and herbicides, many sunscreens, flame retardants, dry cleaning chemicals, artificial fragrances, additives found in most plastics, mercury, chlorine, and likely there are more to add to the list as time goes on. Very difficult!

    Lessons: Avoid chemicals, understand the injured, help them live lives of moral significance and honor, and pray for mercy for our children and us all.

    Historical note:
    There have always been gender bender toxins and poisonous plants in our sin cursed creation since the Fall and rare cases of gender altered persons, but the advent of disruptive chemicals in the 1940s + – such as DDT, DES, dioxins, and onward have exploded gender alteration issues, and help explain why there are so many older individuals among us with these challenges.

  9. Robert: Please think about this. What if attorneys had to do all of their work as volunteers? What if teachers had to do all of their work as volunteers? That certainly would be absurd. Just because there are a lot of people who are trying to emphasize the rights of all human beings does not mean a church should not have any legal rights as a 501c3. Just because a lot of people want to emphasize the rights of all human beings does not mean that every person has a right to be hired everywhere they apply. If a church does not believe in same sex marriages then they do not believe that way. Those who disagree should attend another church.
    I have friends & members of my family who officiate weddings. Are these same people going to punish everyone who does not do every wedding that people request? Wouldn’t that be crazy?
    All human beings have rights and this is why this should be fought against. All christians have a right to
    listen and believe what the Bible teaches. All ministers have the right to work as a paid vocation.
    If someone does not believe in the Bible then should they force everyone in Austin to be heard in churches who have stated that they are not wanted in that churches pulpit. Would you not stand for your loved one’s if someone was trying to take away there lifetime their job security in the ministry?

  10. I don’t know about all Churches, but I do know that many – particularly Baptist Churches – don’t “hire” pastors and people in other leadership positions. They CALL them. They have business meetings in which the attending membership votes on the candidates. This seems like the most straight-forward way to deal with this over-reach. What is the city government going to say about that? “No, you can’t exercise democracy!” In fact, I think this will be the test that will prove what this is really all about.
    The suspicious side of me is saying that, most likely, this is a means to another end. I suspect that the real motivation for this is NOT the establishment or preservation of the rights of an oppressed class. Rather, it is the destruction of a time-honored institution that has been, for a long time, a thorn in the side of leftists and progressives: The Christian Church. If this kind of onerous law takes hold, it will signal the end of the Church as an open public institution. The law will not increase the liberty of those who are practicing the lifestyles it is advertized as trying to protect. But it WILL decrease the liberty of Christians who merely wish to be able to openly practice the tenets of their faith. Maybe that’s OK with an actual majority of the people in some localities. Maybe it’s fine with the majority of the people who make up one or more states. It could at some point be true of the majority in the whole country. I’m sure that, in the minds of those who are pushing this agenda, the result of it all will be some sort of utopia.
    My only response can be summed up in two points: First, be ready to discover that your utopia isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Second, If you’re going to enact laws that will not increase the liberty of any, but will restrict the liberty for a class of law-abiding society that can be demonstrated as the largest single mediating social institution in the country, at least have the dignity and honesty to admit it…

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