Sunday, June 22nd, 2008

Paul Pyle I found out in a rather round about way that Paul Pyle is troubled by the horrible publicity he’s had to endure as a result of my writing in 2006 about his participation in a community forum on homosexuality. He’s also distressed that I link to his son’s blog and poke fun at a video Mr. Pyle made, apparently with another of his sons (who I guess plays the rather gay Mr. Tumnus — I didn’t realize that at the time).

Hmm, I write about him in 2006 and not since, and now in 2008 he finally is aware of it? I can see how the weight of such horrible, horrible publicity is difficult to bear.

And he stars in a video that his own son posts on the Internet for the world to see, and that distresses him? No, what distresses him is that I call the video kinda gay and call his son Nathan a hottie.

And how do I find out about Mr. Pyle’s distress? By his contacting me directly? No, by his contacting my pastor to see whether my pastor will pressure me into taking this horrible stuff off my blog. As I said in an e-mail to Mr. Pyle, that was worth a shot.

Wednesday, October 25th, 2006


Mr. Pyle and a gay Mr. Tumnus?
Don’t ask me how I found (it borders on, or even completely reaches, my being obsessive) this fun video, but find it I did, and color me surprised. Our Mr. Pyle does have some friends in the gay community, one of whom is none other than Mr. Tumnus, the faun from the Chronicles of Narnia. However, somehow I can’t remember James McAvoy saying, “But please, could we do another round of Dance Dance Revolution?”

Take the time to watch the video for yourself (Mr. Pyle’s hottie son Nathan also appears). It’s fun, but I’m afraid it’s also a bit gay.

Thursday, October 19th, 2006
Welcome, Legacy Ministries International visitors!

I suppose it had to happen sooner or later, given that I'd posted a couple times things that Mr. Pyle probably shouldn't see.

Well today I had my first visitor from Legacy Ministries International, at least the first visitor with an IP address belonging to them. LMI, in case you didn't know (and I didn't), is the corporate parent of, among other things, the Legacy Ministries Foundation, the Legacy Village Retirement Community, and Dayton Christian Schools, Inc., which, of course, is Mr. Pyle's employer.

So here's a shout out to Mr. Pyle and his friends from LMI! Welcome!
Wednesday, September 27th, 2006
Yesterday evening I attended a Community Conversation put on by the Centerville Washington Diversity Council at Centerville High School on "Gay & Lesbian Issues at the Intersection of Faith & Public Policy." I would not have chosen to go to this on my own — I'm way past the point where I need to hear the same tired arguments brought out by conservatives that homosexuality is wrong and homosexuals need compassion and cures — but my friend and pastor, Mike Castle, was on the panel and asked for people to come be in the audience to support him. Another friend and Cross Creeker called me at work a few hours before the event to see if I'd be going; he was worried about going alone. As you can see from the picture, he needn't have worried. Between Cross Creek and PFLAG there were lots of supportive people there.

Tom Harry
Tom Harry
Normandy United Methodist Church

John Bradosky
John Bradosky
Ephiphany Lutheran Church
Mike Castle
Mike Castle
Cross Creek Community Church

Paul Pyle
Paul Pyle
Dayton Christian High School
I suppose it's good that Centerville and Washington Twp. have a diversity council and that they're willing to discuss gay issues. Still the diversity of the panel selected for the program was a bit ironic — four white men, all Christian, all Protestant. That last bit was unplanned; Dr. Brad Kallenberg, professor of theology at the University of Dayton was originally supposed to be a panelist (no, wait, Kallenberg may actually also be a Protestant), but his spot was filled by Mr. Paul Pyle, who teaches Bible and Yearbook at Dayton Christian High School. Rounding out the panel, in addition to Mike, were the Rev. John Bradosky of Epiphany Lutheran Church and the Rev. Tom Harry of Normandy United Methodist Church. I hadn't met any of these other panelists before. It was only upon hearing about the event that I learned that Harry is the father of a friend of mine at Cross Creek, and it was only after googling Bradosky that I learned he is Centerville's official chaplain (thank God I don't pay Centerville taxes or I'd be pissed).

The format of the evening was that the moderator, WDTN's Marsha Bonhart, posed six questions (presumably written by the Diversity Council), each of which was answered by two panelists (one from each side). Then after a break there was a very brief time during which she read selected written questions from the audience for various panelists to answer. I liked how Bonhart started her duties as moderator; she said she had to be impartial but implied (especially later) that she personally supported the pro-gay side. Rather than echo the questions and responses, I'll highlight some points that caught my attention.

Homosexuality
is an
abomination
but
incest is not!
(You still
shouldn't
fuck kids!)
Bradosky talked about the holiness code found in Leviticus and pointed out that although lots of sexual behaviors are banned, such as adultery and incest, it is only homosexuality to which the term "to'ebah" or abomination is applied. Since Bradosky took such care to point that out, I suppose he feels that homosexuality is worse than incest. I guess it's refreshing that unlike most conservatives he sees a difference between incest and homosexuality.

Bradosky also went multiple times to the creation story in Genesis (surely he realizes there are two creation stories in Genesis) and said that since the story's all about God creating Man and Woman for each other, homosexuality must be wrong. Sex, he said, is about the reunion of two parts. Penises and vaginas fit together. Poor guy doesn't seem to realize that penises and rectums fit together too, as do penises and mouths.

Bradosky certainly knows the party line on homosexuality. Other old faithful points he trotted out include:
  • love the sinner and reject the sin
  • marriage has always been defined as heterosexual (hmm, well marriage hasn't always been defined as one man, one woman, though, has it?)
  • that the majority decides issues is the American way (too bad the majority in the South couldn't vote to continue slavery or Jim Crow laws?)
  • Scripture doesn't promise that life will be fair (hmm, I guess there's no need to work for justice here on Earth; just believe in Jesus and you'll get your rewards in heaven)
  • research on long-term same-sex marriage says such relationships last only 7 years, while the average heterosexual marriages last 21 years — pressed later for a source he said the Institute for Sex Research, which I couldn't find online (does he mean the old Institut für Sexualwissenschaft from Berlin? does he mean the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction?)
    What I did find online says that marriages last an average of 9.4 years, not 21.

Pyle did pretty good for his team too. He kept insisting on two things, that we have to live our lives by Biblical authority and that homosexual behavior leads to destructive behavior. Pyle does acknowledge that the Bible is silent on some "disputable matters" on which people may disagree, but lest we think that Jesus was silent about homosexuality, we need to remember that Jesus went back to Genesis to answer a question about divorce and Genesis is, as Pyle's teammate Bradosky already pointed out, all about Man and Woman fitting together, so actually Jesus said homosexuality is wrong without having to resort to so many words. In the words of the Church Lady, how convenient! that we have Pyle to interpret the Bible for us.

Responding to a later followup question about what he would do if a child of his came out as gay to him, Pyle told us about his daughter who suffers from mental illness and how he struggles to help her find counseling that will help her avoid destructive behaviors. It's obvious that Pyle didn't get the memo that the American Psychiatric Association doesn't consider homosexuality to be a mental illness and that he doesn't know a whole lot of gay people. After the forum, I went up to Pyle to invite him to come to Cross Creek where he can get to know some gay people whose lives aren't all about destructive behavior. (I suppose I should hope Pyle never finds the pics I took at Folsom, though he can find plenty of pics of heterosexuals engaged in destructive behavior too if he cares to look.)

Harry did an okay job explaining what he saw the purposes of marriage to be (procreation, faithfulness, sacrament which points to God's loving nature, and support/companionship) and explaining that procreation was more than fertilization but also nurturing and caring for children. I'm sure he came across as wildly secular humanistic though to the conservative members of the audience because when asked in a followup question what the authority for his beliefs was, he said he'd sort of come up with his views on his own (an honest answer which probably mirrors my own thoughts but not appealing to people who like Biblical Authority).

Mike personalized the issue, talking about his partner Dan and their children Gideon and Jamie, about how Dan wouldn't receive Social Security spousal benefits if Mike died and about the difficulty in providing legal protections for their non-heterosexual family. Oh well, in the words of Pastor Bradosky, "Scripture doesn't promise that life will be fair."
 
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