A group of Not All Like That Christians support the LGBT community
Published: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 00:10
A new website launched in September called notalllikethat.org has become a new voice for LGBT accepting Christians, known as Not All Like That (NALT) Christians.
According to NALT Christians Project co-founder John Shore, the site was made to give LGBT-accepting Christians a stronger voice.
“For much too long now, anti-LGBT Christians have used the Bible and the pulpit to bully, malign and shame LGBT people,” Shore said on the website. “…not enough LGBT-affirming Christians have stood up to boldly and clearly say how terribly wrong that is—to say that’s not what Christianity is, that the Bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality.”
The site is built upon the idea of the It Gets Better Project, a worldwide movement that has inspired more than 50,000 user created videos viewed more than 50 million times, according to their website.
The NALT Christians Project uses the power of Internet videos and music to spread its message and gain support.
Supporters create a YouTube video and proclaim both their Christian faith and their affirmation of LGBT-people then submit it to the NALT website to inform them their video is ready. The video is then added to the chorus of other videos on the NALT Christians website.
Anthony Ormsbee, sophomore student and Gamma Sigma Kappa member at SHSU, said the NALT Christians Project is a great way for Christians to show their support.
“I feel like it is a wonderful program and full of resources that all Christians should take a look at,” Ormsbee said. “So much of the Christian community relies on support from each other. [It’s] how a lot of us grow spiritually, personally and it allows for us to find support for our beliefs and to be in community with like-minded individuals.”
Ormsbee also said he would love to see the movement come to Huntsville.
“When people realize that Christians are organizing to embrace LGBT people, then we begin to open up and think about the actual issues,” Ormsbee said. “When I see signs that say ‘God Hates Fags’ and all that rhetoric, it just breaks my heart that people see a hateful and vengeful God. I see a God that loves diversity, encourages free will, and has a furious longing and love for us.”
A few members from SHSU’s Chi Alpha, a branch of the college based ministries, also felt the NALT project was a great way to show that not all Christians are “like that.”
Freshman criminal justice major Sebastian Capola said that he and fellow members’ sophomore studio art major Paul Ajibolade and sophomore computer science major Kaye Rodgers would identify themselves as NALT Christians.
“I think we are,” Capola said. “We definitely don’t condemn. We just love anyone who is a follower of Jesus and non-followers as well.”
Ajibolade said that they don’t condone LGBT lifestyles but they won’t judge for it either.
“We don’t believe they should do it, but we don’t judge them based on that,” Ajibolade said. “They’re still humans and we have to love them because God loved us first.”
Capola built on what Ajibolade views of accepting others despite their lifestyle, saying that there is more to a person than their sexuality.
“Homosexuality doesn’t define you,” Capola said. “There is more to a person than just that. There’s an old saying that goes ‘hate the sin, not the sinner.’ I have friends who are lesbian and gay, but I don’t hate them for it.”
Rodgers went further on Capola’s view on sin, saying that one sin is no worse than any other.
“We believe homosexuality is a sin, but it’s no worse than any other sin,” Rodgers said. “We all see things equally, so we won’t put more emphasis on one sin than another.”
Despite Texas having a 57 percent Republican voting demographic according to uselectionatlas.org, Ormsbee has found people like himself in Huntsville that share his views.
“For the most part, I have encountered open minded and allied people in Huntsville,” Ormsbee said. “However this is still a very touchy subject and needs to be discussed in many areas of life in Huntsville. I have found a church (Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church) that loves and celebrates me and loving friends who embrace all that I am.”
Evan Hurst, co-founder of NALT Christians Project, said on the website that the uploaded videos will reach a more important audience.
“Christians who happen to be LGBT, who may be teens or young adults suffering in the closet, having been led to believe that they have to deny their true selves in order to grow in their faith, find peace and, ultimately, salvation, ” Hurst wrote. “They need to hear that there are Christians in the church down the road, and Christians on the other side of the country, who are not all like that.”