First off, this is of course a welcome change from all the religion-sponsored homophobia we are used to seeing. Secondly, who cares? But thirdly, the pastor's arguments are actually pretty strong. The strongest one in my opinion is that as a rabbi, he was unmarried. That just does not happen. The good pastor is probably going to get pelted with hateful comments, although he is in New Zealand and they may be less homophobic over there than in America.
Preaching on Good Friday on the last words of Jesus as he was being executed makes great spiritual demands on the preacher. The Jesuits began this tradition. Many Anglican churches adopted it. Faced with this privilege in New Zealand's capital city, Wellington, my second home, I was painfully aware of the context, a church deeply divided worldwide over issues of gender and sexuality. Suffering was my theme. I felt I could not escape the suffering of gay and lesbian people at the hands of the church, over many centuries. Was that divisive issue a subject for Good Friday? For the first time in my ministry I felt it had to be. Those last words of Jesus would not let me escape. "When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, 'Woman behold your son!' Then he said to the disciple. 'Behold your mother!' And from that hour the
disciple took her to his own home." That disciple was John whom Jesus, the gospels affirm, loved in a special way. All the other disciples had fled in fear. Three women but only one man had the courage to go with Jesus to his execution. That man clearly had a unique place in the affection of Jesus. In all classic depictions of the Last Supper, a favourite subject of Christian art, John is next to Jesus, very often his head resting on Jesus's breast. Dying, Jesus asks John to look after his mother and asks his mother to accept John as her son. John takes Mary home. John becomes unmistakably part of Jesus's family.
Jesus was a Hebrew rabbi. Unusually, he was unmarried. The idea that he had a romantic relationship with Mary Magdalene is the stuff of fiction, based on no biblical evidence. The evidence, on the other hand, that he may have been what we today call gay is very strong. But even gay rights campaigners in the church have been reluctant to suggest it. A significant exception was Hugh Montefiore, bishop of Birmingham and a convert from a prominent Jewish family. He dared to suggest that possibility and was met with disdain, as though he were simply out to shock.
Read the rest here.
The wholet hing is crazy but it's kind of a nice change in craziness in my opinion....
New Zealand's general public seems to be open to the ridiculing of Christianity same as their Christians ridicule anyone or idea that doesn't please them. Also, NZ's second-largest city is named Christchurch; think of the possibilities for jokes.
I guess we can now add Jesus to the list of possible secret gays, right after Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, and Richard Nixon and Bebe Rebozo.
That is a strange list....But maybe Jesus was not closeted at all, maybe that's the way they wrote his story, assuming that there was actually one person and not a collage of different preachy rabbis with a Messianic complex going around at that time.