I feel that a good question to ask of a church one is thinking of attending (I’m not thinking of switching churches, by the way!) is this: “What are your attitudes towards LGBTQI+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning and Intersex, and others) people?” Or some variation on that.
This question will reveal, all in one go, their attitudes on Biblical inerrancy and infallibility; Bible as Rulebook; their attitude to legalism; their ability to love others they may not agree with; their attitude towards judging others [they would naturally call it something more palatable]; their attitude towards ‘mercy not sacrifice’ (Hosea 6:6); and – in short – to be Jesus to the people they meet.
To me, this is a real litmus test of a church’s sincerity when they say ‘all are welcome’. Is it really ‘All are welcome’, or is it ‘All are welcome, but…’?
I have, in the past, asked such questions of various Christian organisations. I have to say that those people have achieved the pathetic result of not one answer in reply. Not even one. No acknowledgement; nothing.
So, if you are interested in joining a new church, here’s an idea of the sort of question you might ask:
Just been looking at your pages on [churchname].com
I have a question, and it’s this: How do you cope with people of ‘different’ sexualities? (LIke Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual etc.) I have contacted churches with this question in the past, and have not once received a reply! What I mean by my question is, how much do you integrate people of ‘alternative’ sexualities into your church? I’d really love to hear from you on this subject!
Thanks for your time
[Edit: I have just heard back from one church today. Well done, those people!]