A Colorado-based ministry has been forced to cancel summer conferences for young adults in California because of legislation there that would ban biblical views on sexual identity.
AB 2943, a measure currently working its way through the California legislature, would make it illegal, under fraud laws, to sell books or counsel someone or have a conference speaker who affirms the possibility that one can lessen or get rid of same-sex attraction. There look to be few roadblocks to keep it from becoming law – but even though it’s not even law yet, it appears to already be having an effect on a Christian ministry.
Dr. Jeff Myers, president of Summit Ministries, describes AB 2943 as “the most blatant chilling of free speech in America in my lifetime” – and says it leaves him with little to say to a young person who comes to one of their courses and is experiencing sexual confusion.
“They ask us all the time, How does my faith work with this?” he shares. “And we’d essentially have to say the state of California forbids us from allowing a biblical ethic – embraced by billions of people for thousands of years – to inform our answer to your question.”
In response to the legislation, Summit has decided to cancel its two summer conferences at Biola University near Los Angeles, over concerns that the state will forbid some of what Summit teaches. But Myers says they don’t plan to leave the attendees high and dry.
“We’re suspending our programs in California – and then [we’re] taking all of those students and flying them to our other locations to be with us this summer throughout the United States,” he informs. The two conferences were scheduled for June 10-23 and June 24-July 7.
“California state authorities are hijacking good-faith concerns about reparative therapy to deny constitutional protection to those who hold traditional views of sexuality and marriage,” Myers adds in a press release. “We cannot and will not bend God’s truth to accommodate the state of California.”
Myers says he hopes someone challenges the law, but it can’t be him because it’s not his life that could possibly be derailed. “I just can’t do that to the young staff members I have,” he explains, “and I want to be able to promise parents that when [their] child comes to us we will have a safe environment.”
OneNewsNow spoke with Pastor Manuel Gonzales of Calvary Chapel in Winnetka, near LA. He might be the one to challenge the law.
“We are going to purposely record a sermon about God’s view of homosexuality and human sexuality,” he offers. “And my plan is to send one of these CDs to the people who have sponsored this bill – and I’m also going to include a gift card to Chick-fil-A to say thank you to them.”
According to Myers, Summit is committed to purchase airplane tickets for every student who needs help to relocate to one of the other scheduled conferences.
Copyright OneNewsNow.com. Reprinted with permission.