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El Paso pastors' group comes out against City charter amendment that would include homosexuals in non-discrimination policy

By Staff Report
Published On: Mar 11 2013 02:56:55 PM CDT
Updated On: Jan 14 2014 10:43:24 PM CST
Gay couple, same-sex couple

Clifton Wiggins/CNN

EL PASO, Texas -

The El Paso Pastors’ Council has announced it is against the City charter amendment on the May 11 ballot that would include homosexuals in its non-discrimination policy.

The group is urging voters to vote no on the "so-called gay/lesbian/transsexual anti-discrimination amendment."

In mid-February, City Council approved several City charter amendments for the May 11 ballot, including one that would include homosexuals in its non-discrimination policy.

In 2010, City Council overturned El Paso voters’ decision to not give benefits to gay and unmarried partners of City employees.

The El Paso Pastors’ Council released the following statement on Bishop Tom Brown’s Website on its stand on the proposed City charter amendment:

We of the El Paso Pastors’ Council believe in and support the Biblical definition of marriage as being that between a man and a woman as defined in Genesis 2:23-24 and reaffirmed by Jesus in Matthew 19:3-6. We consider consensual sex between two males or two females to be an abomination before God as stated in the Bible. (See Genesis 18:20, Genesis 19:4-13, Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, Romans 1:16-32, I Corinthians 6:9). We also believe that pre-marital sex and cohabitation without marriage to be sinful. We, therefore, cannot support any governmental endorsement at any level, in any form, and in any way of homosexual sex or heterosexual sex outside of marriage. Neither do we believe that persons who practice homosexual sex need to have governmental endorsement of their sexual practices and governmental protection as a class from other people.

We believe in the love of God for all people, that we all have sinned and come short of the full measure of righteousness set by Jesus Christ, and that we all need God’s grace and forgiveness for our sins. We must stand on our beliefs and preach, teach, and live by the dictates of our conscience as we understand the Bible, the love of God through Jesus Christ, and the leading of God’s Holy Spirit.
Here are some common sense reasons why this so-called Gay/Lesbian/Transsexual Anti-discrimination Amendment is wrong for El Paso:

1. Immutability
Immutability means not subject to change. Unlike race or gender, where a person cannot change either race or gender, homosexual practices are not immutable. Persons who are hormonally and physiologically males or females can regulate and change their sexual practices. (Even if one’s hormonal makeup and physiological makeup are such that the person is conflicted in terms of sexual orientation and whose gender is truly indeterminate, the person does not have to practice certain sexual behaviors.) Such sexual behaviors are choices and not states of being. There are many examples of homosexuals that left the lifestyle and are either celibate or heterosexual. Of course, there are those who practice the heterosexual lifestyle only to go to the homosexual lifestyle. The fact that one may pass from one sexual lifestyle to another lifestyle is proof that homosexuality in general is not immutable, and thus, persons who practice homosexual sex should not be subject to special protection as an immutable class of citizens.
As ministers we believe that homosexuals, like all humans, must be treated with dignity and respect; however, homosexuality is sinful, unhealthy and against nature. Christ has come to bring change to everyone who receives Christ as Lord.

2. Free Speech
We are also concerned that this proposed Gay/Lesbian/Transsexual Anti-discrimination Amendment hinders the free speech of city employees. This amendment could be used to discipline and punish city employees if they speak out against homosexual conduct. Suppose a city employee thinks that homosexuals, trans-genders, or bisexuals are wrong in the way they live. Would their verbal opinion be considered discrimination? The amendment seems to squelch the free speech of city employees. Thus this amendment appears unconstitutional in that it limits the speech of city employees.

3. Privacy
We are also concerned that men who claim to be transsexuals, whether true or not, could use the amendment to enter the women's restrooms on city grounds. Women assume that when they enter restrooms that only other women may enter. But the amendment will give free access to transsexual men to enter the restrooms. It does not matter if the men are transsexual in their psyche or whether they pretend to be in order to invade the privacy of women, they should not be allowed to enter the women's restrooms on city grounds. Women should have the right to expect that women’s restrooms will be for women only! The same could be said for men’s rights of privacy for men’s restrooms.

4. Democracy
Voters already spoke out on the issue of domestic health benefits. They made it clear that they do not believe unmarried and gay city employees should have their partners receive the same benefits of married employees. Although they voted for the Traditional Family ordinance, their votes were “trashed” by our city council, and now our city council is adding insult to injury by pushing their anti-traditional marriage view onto the public.

THIS AMENDMENT IS NOT RIGHT FOR EL PASO, AND WE URGE THE CITIZENS TO VOTE AGAINST THE SO-CALLED GAY/TRANSSEXUAL ANTI-DISCRIMINATION AMENDMENT.

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The Pastors’ Council is an organization to empower pastors and their congregations across racial and denominational lines to impact the culture and community through concerted prayer, to equip our congregations for effective citizenship and to provide a unified voice on spiritual, cultural, social and moral issues from a Biblical and common sense perspective. The EI Paso Pastors’ Council is a respected voice in front line cultural and political issues from a non-partisan perspective, holding elected officials of both major parties and non-partisan offices to a Biblical, moral, and common sense standard.

The following is the list of courageous pastors in EI Paso that have joined the EI Paso
Pastors’ Council and are committed to informing their congregations about the important issues of the day and encouraging civic participation.
Joe Salcido, pastor of Centro Vida/Life Center Church
J.O. Lawson, bishop of Holy Light Church of God in Christ
Tom Brown, bishop of Word of Life Church
Warren Hoyt, pastor of Jesus Chapel
Eddie Lee, pastor of Harvest Christian Center
Eduardo Vergara, pastor of Guerreros De Oracion
Jorge Layton, pastor Casa de Alabanza in Las Cruces
Mario Gonzalez, pastor of Templo La Evangelica
Marc Sanchez, pastor of Love of Christ Christian Ministries
Joshua Bencomo, pastor of Encuentro con Dios
Gil Zaragoza, pastor of Faith Bible Fellowship
Alfredo Sanchez, pastor of Iglesia de Dios Todopoderoso
David Diller, pastor Ministerio Manantiales de Vida
Hector Ferrea, pastor of Iglesia Christianio EI Pescador
Feliz Pagan, pastor of Iglesia Abundancia de Paz
Victor Franco, pastor of Templo Shalom
Hellman Avila, pastor of Mision de Gracia
Fred Grenier, pastor of First Church of the Nazarene
Rigoberto Garza, pastor of Centro Cristiano Respuestas
Miguel Barragan, pastor of Congregacion Amor de Dios
Luis Alba, pastor of Centro Cristiano Cantico Nuevo
Allen Miller, pastor of Park Hills Christian Church
Dr. L. J. Goodwin, pastor of Mt View Baptist Church
Jose A. Perez, pastor of Christian Fellowship Ministries
Ernesto Rodarte, pastor of Rose of Sharon
Samuel Barraza, pastor of Iglesia del Dios Vivo
Jorge Torres, pastor of Templo Reyele Reyes
Rogelio Ortega, pastor of Ministerios Nuevo Amanecer
Adrian Ramirez, pastor of Fountain of Water and Eternal Life Church
Gary Wilcox, pastor of Restoration Fellowship
Buddy Burkett, pastor of Word of Life
Buster Russell, pastor of Lifegate
Karl Heimer, pastor of San Pablo Lutheran
Dewayne Richardson, pastor of Chapel of the North Hills
Michael Grady, pastor of Phillips Chapel Christian Fellowship
James Jones, pastor of Montwood Church of Christ
Jose Antonio Galvan, pastor of Vision en Accion Mision Rescate
H. B. Johnson, Jr., bishop of Praise Temple FGBC
Barney Field, executive director of El Paso for Jesus

El Paso Pastors' Council is not a ministry of Word of Life Church or Tom Brown Ministries. It is a local chapter of the US Pastor's Council.

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