Recently Oprah hosted a series of shows, her Soul Series. One of the more interesting was Spirituality 101. Rev. Ed Bacon, an Episcopal priest from Pasadena, California was the guest. It was an amazing interview. You can download this in two parts from the Oprah web site in a variety of formats including audio or video on your iPod via iTunes.
Rev. Bacon made an astounding remark. He said that “being gay is a gift from God.” In the video imbedded above, Oprah followed up with Rev. Bacon on his appearance. She commented that this was the first that she had heard any clergy make this particular remark. What Rev. Bacon was saying was that one’s sexuality is a gift from God. All people are born with their sexuality. He went on to say that it is our society that is unwilling to acknowledge this gift to gay people.
Rev. Bacon spoke about how we use the Bible. Many people see the Bible as a tool to condemn and punish us; a tool that forces us to see how evil we are and how evil the world is. This is a common theme as you listen to conservative evangelicals. What these people miss is the fact that God brought Jesus to the world so that he could spread the good news; love for oneself and your neighbor. Jesus’ ministry was not a ministry of condemnation but a ministry of love and compassion to all.
The congregation of All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena is fortunate to have such an intelligent and compassionate pastor as Rev. Bacon. Be sure to watch the embedded video above and the actual show clips from the Oprah web site.