Eric was a good kid. He was raised in a Christian home, but he always felt a little different than the rest. As is too often the case, his family and peers turned on him when he came out as gay.
They called him “faggot” instead of “Eric.” It became his identity and dehumanized him. As though being a homosexual makes you any less worthy of love, his parents called him “disgusting,” “unnatural” and “perverted.” They told him he was “damned to hell” and practically disowned him as a son.
Eric tried to maintain a positive attitude and even reached out to support other teens struggling with homosexuality, encouraging them to hang in there because “it gets better.”
Just a month later, Eric killed himself.
While this may only be one case, it’s a tragic story that’s been told way too many times. It seems that the topic of how the church handles homosexuality has been dissected so much that we often forget the humans involved. Have we forgotten the marginalized outcasts, the sinners, whom Jesus called his friends?