When he was a freshman in college, Andrew Marin's three best friends "came out" to him in three consecutive months. The self-proclaimed "Bible-banging homophobe" wanted to understand his friends' experience. So he moved to Boystown, a Chicago neighborhood populated primarily by GLBT (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender) folks. He founded The Marin Foundation in 2005 to build bridges between the GLBT and Christian communities. Leadership assistant editor Brandon O'Brien asked Andrew what his experience might mean for the local church.
How can we begin to think differently about the link between the church and the GLBT community?
We are currently running the largest national scientific research study ever conducted about faith in the GLBT community. Preliminary data reveals a statistic that stands out above all the others: 86 percent of the GLBT community was raised in a denominationally based religion. This tells me that the Christian community's mindset about gays and lesbians is often ...1