Evangelist Lives As Gay Man For 1 Year In Hopes Of Changing His Mind.

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posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 09:06 AM
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Here we have a brave and courageous man.


The experiment began after a lesbian friend opened up to Kurek about being excommunicated by her family. All Kurek, an avowed evangelical Christian, could think about, he says, “was trying to convert her.”

He was quickly disgusted by his own feelings, more pious than humane.

In fact, Kurek was so disgusted by his response to his friend that he decided to do something drastic. Living in Nashville, Tennessee, he would pretend to be gay for a year. The experiment began on the first day of 2009; Kurek came out to his family, got a job as a barista at a gay café and enlisted the help of a friend to act as his boyfriend in public.


For an entire year, stopping short of actually being physical with a man, this Kurek lived and breathed the Gay community in Nashville.


His doubt about Christianity’s condemnation of homosexuality, Kurek writes, was “perfected” in 2008, when a close friend recounted the story of coming out to her family and being disowned.

“I betrayed her, then,” writes Kurek. “It was a subtle betrayal, but a cruel one: I was silent.”

His recognition of that betrayal, he writes, led him to believe that “I needed to come out of the closet as a gay man.”

“I believe in total immersion,” Kurek says in an interview. “If you are going to walk in other people’s shoes, then you are going to need to walk in your shoes.”


Story On CNN

As he states in his book ( which I will be reading this week ) he become more religious, not less religious. But he did come to an understand about organized religion and how faith without reason can certainly lead down some really dark roads.

It's no secret that I am gay. I can tell you one thing. I would not, actually could not, live as a devout Evangelist for a year. 5 minutes would probably be too much actually.

Kudos to this man, for doing what all of us should do before we attempt to judge another for the choices they've made in their lives and the circumstances they were given.


“I want to tell more stories,” he says “and humanize the people who Christians always want to look at as labels.”



For Kurek, his year as a gay man radically changed his view of faith and religion, while also teaching him “what it meant to me a second class citizen in this country.”


If a guy who was against you at one point, can turn his viewpoint around to this, I wonder what would happen if all extremists had a year in the life of those they hated.

Thoughts?

~Tenth



+11 more 
posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 09:11 AM
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I'm not a fan of leveling. I think a healthy society leaves room for stratification and intolerances. I feel like people need to hold onto the right to not approve of something regardless of how they are judged or guilted. Perhaps a person just plain doesn't like something and doesn't want it in their life in anyway. Society needs to preserve the right of self direction even if it hurts some feelings.


+8 more 
posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 09:18 AM
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reply to post by Socrato
 


Sure, Utopia doesn't exist.

There will always be those who dislike thing and who voice their opinion. It's how you do so that can become the problem.

As this man pointed out, before doing this he was convinced that all gays were HIV positive, liberal pedophiles.

We can all agree the belief written above is ignorant, intellectually dishonest and serves only to foster and solidify an un-healthy mindset regarding a group of people.

You have the right to your own opinions, but not your own facts.

~Tenth



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 09:25 AM
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Wait, I don't have a right to my own facts? I think we do actually. Nothing can be known for certain so I don't think anyone has the authority to tell anyone else how it is. Your reality is yours and only yours. You can choose to align it with the majority or not. We have to remain free to be independent at all cost. If we don't we might as well not even persist as a species.



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 09:27 AM
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I have known gay friends, and I have gay family. Quite honestly, there is very little difference between them and other people I know. It's wonderful to see that some religious minds are beginning to recognize the dark toll their beliefs have on the society they are impressed upon.

I'm sure everyone here understands the concept that hate coming from fear, fear coming from the unknown, and the unknown coming from inexperience. When someone becomes experienced in that which he hates, it's harder to hate something you understand, something where you have seen the love and the companionship and all the things you actually enjoy. Superstition and stereotypes fall away, and you actually see it for what it is.

Like they say: "The only good is knowledge, and the only evil is ignorance."

Good thread. s&f
edit on 2-12-2012 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 10:19 AM
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Change 'gay' (which should read as homosexual to avoid dictionary debate and confusion) in the title and we realize how little this means:

Evangelist Lives As Italian Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Evangelist Lives As (insert different colour of skin here) Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Evangelist Lives As Impoverished Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Evangelist Lives As Rich Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Evangelist Lives As Drug-Addicted Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Evangelist Lives As Alcoholic Man for 1 Year In Hopes of Changing His Mind

Did it change his mind? Of course, we all wrongly have preconceived notions when we judge others. Lesson is not to judge people (Matthew 7:1), but that doesn't mean we cannot distinguish between right and wrong behaviours (1 John 5:17) and avoid them (1 Timothy 1:9-11).

P.S. You don't have to lie about who you are in order to realize you're judgmental, though it may take a little introspection.
edit on 2-12-2012 by saint4God because: grammar



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 10:32 AM
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post removed because the user has no concept of manners

Click here for more information.



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 10:33 AM
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Originally posted by papazen
[snip]


And you would know this...how? Careful swinging that judgement hammer around, you may miss your target and hit yourself.
edit on 2-12-2012 by elevatedone because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 11:37 AM
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Good find!! Star and flag for you tenth!!

As allways, I very much enjoy your threds

I wish everybody could walk in a gay persons shoes for just a day, this hate needs to stop !!!


Be safe people



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 11:38 AM
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The Hammer of life has hit me enough times to not be so naive and not take life so seriously.
Anyways do you honestly think you can make any conclusion like this with out actually having gay sex?. I dont think going around saying you're gay and waiting for some type of discriminatory experience is enough. Because maybe the sex part is so good that it would over shadow any of that and make it worth it. I just dont really get it , it just seems like a complete waste of time and very very foolish to me



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 11:50 AM
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The OVERWHELMINGLY HUGE majority of Evangelists are so wrapped up in hate, that this type of method is the ONLY way to "cure" them of their HATE that they have.

For the REST of the hateful folks under the hateful religious-grip whom do not try to put themselves in the shoes of those whom they HATE, well, for THEM, I think the REAL PLAN involves reincarnation!! Reincarnation to which, the religious haters come back in the next life as EXACTLY THAT WHICH THEY HATED in this life!!


Heck, thats the only way to change some folks!! And I believe that is the "higher plan" for us. Thats some AWESOME JUSTICE, eh?? I believe that is whats next for the haters among us. A RUDE AWAKENING for them!!!!!!


And by the way, I am not homosexual. NOT one bit. I just happen to believe that such folks do NOT deserve to be hated on. Especially since folks do NOT choose who they are anyways, and are BORN that way. Thinking that we choose to be heterosexual or homosexual is just ASININE religious thinking. ASININE at best.



edit on 2-12-2012 by oper8zhin because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 12:07 PM
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If people only realized that God doesnt ever create anyone's body suits and that includes, sexual orientation wrong, and then get on to really understanding what this school is about. Learning to accept and understand everyone and always find ways to work out differences in ways that empower and validate and ensure win/wins for everyone. Its about being the Spirit of Peace and Love in all situations. That is what this school is about. How to set aside all the ego and contentions people fight over, and drop them like the poison they are, the traps with cheese they are, and simply be there for others, and ask God/Goodness, to direct you to helping. To serve.

This school is for you to grow up in.

And I would take Christ out of the rest of the book. He and the rest aren't on the same page. I've known that since I was a pre-teen and read the bible. Only his words, only his example.



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 12:51 PM
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Evangelicalism ia a fire and brimstone branch of Christianity. Even if he felt guilty for having empathy his faith still compels him to view his friend's acts as Hell worthy. Thus, I do not believe he was actually an evangelical.

I honeslty believe this is a propaganda story. I believe this guy is making it up as part of his activist efforts.

The moral is "if you abandone your faith you can be anything you want."

Didn't some famous preacher get bounced out of church in Colorado for cruising for men? He got picked up trying to buy a male protestitute, but at first said he was trying to score Meth (which is better?
). Even he, who later admitted to liking gay sex "because of the Devil", didn't go as a far as preach tolerance.


If you're a true evangelical you don't do tolerance.
edit on 2-12-2012 by GreenGlassDoor because: (no reason given)


+2 more 
posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 02:10 PM
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reply to post by Socrato
 


No I'm sorry.

You may choose to live in another reality but there's only 1 reality. There is only one plane of existence that we all operate on. So no. You don't get to say the sky is red because you want to. I should say you can, but people are going to tell you that you're wrong.

And they would not be wrong In saying that.

your opinions are your own and facts aren't reliant on our belief of them.

An error does not become truth by reason of.multiplied propagstion nor does.truth bevome error because nobody sees it.

-Tenth
edit on 12/2/2012 by tothetenthpower because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 02:36 PM
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Treating others the way you wish to be treated is in reality much more difficult than it would seem. Kudos to this man for practicing what he preaches, and even more kudos for being open minded enough to change his views.

Christianity teaches that every single person is a sinner, and that there are not degrees of sin. All sin is sin. Given this, how is it that these kinds of attitudes continue within so much of the Christian world view? Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. So throw stones, or deal with your own sin. Which is the more difficult path? The narrow path...

Three things remain, faith, hope and love. The greatest of these is love. How can love ever be a sin?

Love your neighbor as yourself. It doesn't say except if... it just says love your neighbor as yourself.

edit on 2-12-2012 by MsAphrodite because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 03:10 PM
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reply to post by tothetenthpower
 
Interesting idea and pretty admirable too. His approach reminds me of the author John Howard Griffin in the late 50s.


In the fall of 1959, Griffin determined to investigate the plight of African-Americans in the South first hand. He consulted a New Orleans dermatologist, who prescribed a course of drugs, sunlamp treatments, and skin creams. Griffin also shaved his head so as not to reveal his straight hair. He spent weeks travelling as a black man in New Orleans and parts of Mississippi (with side trips to South Carolina and Georgia), getting around mainly by bus and by hitch-hiking.

His resulting memoir, Black Like Me, became a best seller in 1961. The book described in detail the problems an African American encountered in the Deep South meeting such simple needs as finding food, shelter, and toilet facilities. Griffin also described the hatred he often felt from white Southerners he encountered in his daily life — shop clerks, ticket sellers, bus drivers, and others. He was particularly shocked by the curiosity white men displayed about his sexual life. His account was tempered with some anecdotes about white Southerners who were friendly and helpful.[


I read the book years ago and it certainly left an impression. Even the great George Orwell walked the walk when he travelled as a homeless man in Paris and London.

The challenge for this evangelist is in trying to create a positive impression on other evangelists when it comes to tolerance, walking the walk and being reflective.

Sadly, as we see in this thread, many will ignore the value of the message and mischaracterise him into being a closet gay guy. It's easier to carry on with the prejudice if he's treated that way. I wonder if Griffin was ever accused of being a wannabe black guy? Probably! The same innuendoes were levelled at feminists over the past decades and men supporting feminism were often questioned about their own sexuality.

All BS in my opinion. If we take away the evangelical framing of his beliefs, it has to be said he was a brave man and risked a lot to find out for himself.



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 03:28 PM
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That is a courageous thing to do. He may have been ignorant before but he wanted to change and learn.To be a better person and friend.
And i think everyone on ATS should be able to respect that.
"Deny Ignorance"



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 03:38 PM
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I am not in any way religious but anyone who goes out of their way to challenge their own inherent views deserves a big S&F.



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 03:42 PM
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I don't think that this Evangelist has actually 'lived' as a gay man. He is straight therefore he would not have had any feelings towards his friend who was the same sex. He did not have any intercourse or sexual activity with this person either so I don't think it is fair of him to say he has lived a gay persons persona. I totally respect what he done and how he has managed to understand that we are all different and very unique and we should not be put into groups of people. We are all one.
edit on 2-12-2012 by ProfessorT because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 2 2012 @ 03:44 PM
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reply to post by ProfessorT
 


But to everyone on the outside he was gay and had gay sex with his gay boyfriend. We only found out afterwards that he didn't do that stuff.





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