By Melanie Nathan, March 22, 2014.
The Public Relations representative of Joel Osteen* sent a huge Timeline Memograph asking me to post it here on my BLOG. It was titled “The Evolution of Joel Osteen.” I read it and all it did was brag about how he has evolved into the biggest Church in America, how he has sold many millions of books and how he is impacting the rest of the world, including Africa.
But has anyone heard Osteen and his ministry speak out against the anti-Gay fervor in Africa, generated by the export of Christianity? Now one may argue that it was not Osteen’s brand of Christianity which hit the streets of Africa and that it was not his Church or denomination which caused the anti-homosexual fervor, and the current new laws that target LGBT Africans for condemnation, through arrest and persecution. However, one can argue that each and every Church, notwithstanding its brand or form, has a duty to speak out very loudly to vehemently condemn the new laws in Uganda.
People like Osteen have had five years to intervene, since we first learned of the pain caused in the name of Christianity, to Africa’s LGBT community, and yet there has been very little to zero outreach, be it quiet diplomacy or noisy protest. And now look at what is happening.
A great amount of publicity has been in mainstream press speaking to the genesis and evolution of the hate in Africa, touted in the name of Christianity. Yet people like Osteen have not only failed to speak out forcefully or at all against it, thereby failing the LGBT populace, but they have actually failed Christianity itself, allowing this type of anti-gay sentiment to prevail, and to such a fever-pitch extent – all in the name of Christianity.
Yes, I assert that Osteen’s silence hurts, not only gays, but also Christianity. Especially since Osteen is now bragging that he has the largest ministry in America, and since he now asserts its growing influence in Africa.
Since President Museveni of Uganda and President Jonathan of Nigeria signed their respective Jail the gays Bills, Osteen and other mega pastors have not been seen or heard of on the issue.
In case they do not know, here is the result: –
Tabloids are outing gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender people and others perceived as such, and people believe they have license to attack in the name of Christianity. Christian families, neighbors, employers and landlords are seeking retribution against this small minority and the wrath is palpable. People are in fear for their lives and have gone into hiding, with little to no resources. We now have hundreds of gays that we know of and possible many more, an entire country of LGBTI people, scrambling into hiding, some already lynched and beaten, and all are struggling to find shelter and food. Many want to leave their countries and have nowhere to go.
Now Osteen are you ready to talk EVOLUTION?
And all the while this so called ‘Christian Nation,’ ( as per President Yoweri Museveni, himself,) has done little more than perpetuate the persecution. And Osteen’s evolution by virtue of its silence on the issue and bragged influence, is complicit.
*And the Public Relations Office of Christian College promoting Joel Osteen has the audacity to ask my BLOG – which stands for Human Rights and advocates against the persecution – to publicize Osteen’s Evolution?
Here was my response:
What has Joel Olsteen and his Christian Ministry said or done about the export of hate by Christians to Africa against the target gay group? – Now That would be an evolution right?
Have you read my BLOG and the nature of its work?
I fight Christians and others who export hate to Africa – and now I will fight those who do not speak out vehemently against it.
Has Osteen come out and spoken against the Jail the Gays bills – the handy work of Christian Evangelicals in Africa- namely Uganda and Nigeria.
Do not speak to me about the evolution of Osteen until he has the guts to speak out very LOUDLY in the name of Christianity to thwart the anti- gay fervor in Africa.
People are dying in Africa right now – all LGBTI – in the name of Christianity and you want me to promote it further?
Osteen can brag as much as he likes about his church, but until he does something concrete to undo the harm of Christianity, albeit other denominations, as far as I am concerned he is complicit.
UPDATED Correction – the PR is for Christian College online – *Works for Christian On Line Colleges promoting Osteen Meme
Please note – I understand it is the fringe group of Evangelical extremists that have exported this form of hate. However what people need to know is that while the people in Africa have responded to that fringe notion, as exported, to promote the anti-gay laws and to persecute, to them it is simply “Christianity.” So all this persecution is being done in the name of Christianity, without any regard for the fact that it may be fringe. This places a much larger duty on the “good” Christians to come forward to counter the harm.
Lest we forget that part of the brag that speaks to money. How about Osteen hit up his membership for the much needed dollars to help Africa’s LGBT fight the harm perpetuated by Christianity, on the Continent.
We have 37 Ugandans and other Africans from Cameroon, Angola, Gambia and Kenya – persecuted, traumatized, in fear and who are in hiding who we are providing direct support to at this time. PLEASE consider making a donation. Our Indiegogo Campaign took 9% – If people donate directly via this paypal address, we can avoid a new campaign and provide 9% more to the survivors of this LGBT persecution:
DONATE through paypal VIA firstname.lastname@example.org – and READ MORE ABOUT THE RESCUE FUND HERE
55 thoughts on “The Pain to Gays in Africa through the Evolution of Joel Osteen”
Reblogged this on JerBear's Queer World News, Views & More From The City Different – Santa Fe, NM.
Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
Another look at Joel Osteen …. and Africa!!
Just a quick spelling correction – his last name should be ‘Osteen’ rather than ‘Olsteen’.
Great article though!
OY vey thanks let me fix….eek
Not only did you misspell his name when you replied to his PR person, but you must have misspelled the PR person’s name as well. I called and there is no “Aniya” on Olsteen’s staff. hmmmm… you wouldn’t be making this stuff up would you?
SEE MY UPDATE IT WAS PR FOR CHRISTIAN COLLEGE PROMOTING OSTEEN – Nonetheless it does not change anything – regardless of who sent the Meme to me, OSTEEN has done nothing to speak out against the KILL THE GAYS and JAIL THE GAYS BILLS and so what does it matter who asked to promote the meme. The POINT is Osteen is a dud when it comes to Christianity until he speaks out againsthe hate perpetuated against LGBT Africa by Christians- and he owes this as the BRAG of the biggest Church in America. See upadte and a screen shot of the email I received with the LINK to the meme…
What have the liberal democrats done about the persecution and killing of Christians all over the world at the hands of muslims? NOTHING! Heck, obama ran his first term as president as an anti gay president in favor of DOMA!
AND YOUR POINT PLEASE? What have conservative Republicans done about the Hate Christianity has spread around the world? Is your answer to the worlds problems always a quesiton about anothe rproblem. please get a grip. We can all play the same game.
Wow, a lot of mean-spiritedness here… I don’t agree with Joel’s opulent lifestyle and his idealistically conservative ideas, but my sense is that he actually lives and believes what he preaches. He clearly inspires a lot of people, and his message has always been one of tolerance and consideration for others. I cannot imagine him writing a nasty letter like this. As for Africa, he is responsible for a ton of aid relief. How many of us can say that? But you want to vilify him for not speaking out on every particular issue of the day? Guess what: There’s nothing new under the sun. Attacks on the LGBT community are just one more manifestation of hatred. While you all spew hateful comments about him, Osteen is speaking out against hatred — and, as I see it, that means he is speaking out against its particular manifestations, as well. Let’s try to be a little less self-righteous and a little more tolerant of someone who, though imperfect, is likely accomplishing a lot more good in the world than any of us.
Clearly you did not get the point of the piece. So what you saying is that it is mean spirited of me to ask Osteen to speak out against the BASH THE GAYS KILL THE GAYS bill introduced by American Christians into Uganda and Africa? Or are you complicit too? Scott Lively – Engle- Warren – Skinner – all went to Uganda and held anti-gay rallies- spewing lies about GAYS . Lively helped write the KILL THE GAYS BILL – and it was all done in the name of Christianity. Do yo not think that good Christians like Osteen should be speaking out against this to defend Christianity? OR do you think Christianity should stand on the record in Africa as the mechanism that persecuted gays?
He has actually said it’s a sin, so no he isn’t speaking against that hate, he is speaking for it.
He said he believes homosexuality is a sun but as Christians we love the sinner and hate the sin. We are here to love one another. If you are going to quite my pastor, please get it right. He does not preach hate but tolerance.
OH PLUUUUUEASE! Preaching tolerance is endorsing hate. How about preaching ACCEPTANCE. Tolerance is an apron to hide one’s hate behind. Its like saying “I dont hate Jews some of my best friends are Jews” – which is known as the classic line for real anti-semites. This I has the sin but not the sinner is the biggest load of horse poop excuse for real hate that I ever heard. So dont give me that nonsense. All gays know that that is a way of excusing oneself from bigotry. Except us clever people see through it. Not to mention that TOLERANCE is not good enough. So you mean if your child was a lesbian you would tolerate her? Disgusting . G-d requires that you do not judge which means acceptance not tolerance. And please -re-read your Bible and put the so called sin in context and perspective,
I agree. And, who’s “Aniya?” There doesn’t seem to be an Aniya on his staff. I think someone is pulling our leg here.
I did bnot say she was on his staff… I said it was a PR representative and as it happens this PR is coming from Christian Church. Are you saying the mem is lying about Osteen?
Check the LINK yourself – SO how do you defend the fact that OSTEEN is complicit through his silence in the Christian persecution of gays in Africa? Especially because he is the BIGGEST CHURCH IN AMERICA?
“Aniya Granato aniya.XXXXXXXXXX
Mar 22 (1 day ago)
I hope this e-mail finds you well. My name is Aniya and I work for Onlinechristiancolleges.com. We recently finished working on a graphic “The Evolution of Joel Osteen” which I thought I would share it with you in the hopes you find it useful for your blog. Here’s the link: http://www.onlinechristiancolleges.com/joel-osteen/
Feel free to pass the graphic along if you think they’d like it. Either way, I found your blog very revealing with a bunch of smart commentary. Thanks for your time!
Valus – you’re 100% on target! Seems like there are not only militant anti-gays but militant gays. There is hate on both sides. Their attempts at obligations forced down his throat are evidence of this.
I dont think you can attribute HATE to victims who defend themselves from attacks via Christianity – If the Christian extremists would ignore and leave gays alone there would NOT be this situation. So look at what comes first before you attribute hate to both sides.
I agree more
Venom. And that makes it painful for us Christians who are more tolerant. Love answers back with love, and you seem pretty intolerant yourself, Ms. Nathan. Have a good day.
You must have venom in your heart to see this simple request as venom. I am asking Osteen to speak out against the hate that has been perpetuated in the name of Christianity and you think muy request is venomous? Get a grip on real;ity here.The venom is in the heart of those who fail to speak out. Are you one of them?
You know he won’t say a thing. His brand of “we deserve to be rich” religion doesn’t do the hard work of feeding the poor, providing comfort to the sick and justice for the oppressed. Those of us that worship in smaller churches that do just that, don’t have the muscle to get out the message. Great response letter, though.
I guess the millions he spends in Africa (Tanzania, Nigeria, etc.) sending medical teams is not comforting the sick?
Stupid!!!!!! Stupid!!!!!! Silly you – persecuting gays cannot be cured by comforting the sick…. LOL and no one says that Osteen does zero good. But hey Hitler also helped the sick in Germany. All the while he was murdering Jews
Rick Warren is far from a fringe extremist (I wish he was). Neither were various other influential Americans who traveled to Uganda to preach against homosexuality and hold closed door meetings with Ugandan leaders. No need for you to backtrack. This was great. Drive it home.
I used fringe here to pre-empt the argument against what I am suggesting. Warren is not firnge – but he stepped back from his Ugandan anti-gay stuff – whereas Lively and Engle and others have continued to endorse it.
Am I mistaken or did the artists darken Osteen’s skin a good bit? Considering that the graphic seemingly was made for the African market.
Our Federal Govt. needs to cut off all relations and all economic aid to Uganda until this anti-Gay law is abolished., Things will change very quickly then.
I love your articles, and the passion with which you write. I hope you don’t mind if I suggest that your material would be even more effective if you checked punctuation more carefully. Keep up the good, important work!
HA I dont mind at all.. I usually think faster than I can type. And I am a lousy typist. I typed this with a hand injury too. And I dont have time to check. It would be great if I had someone to edit. But this is so time consuming and I derive zero income from it. So I just do the best i can.
There’s a 1950s novel (Wise Blood) by the Southern Catholic writer Flannery O’Connor in which the protagonist sets out to establish a church without Jesus Christ crucified. That’s what Joel Osteen has. This man is no Christian; Christianity requires poverty, humility, and self-sacrifice.
Joel Osteen is no friend of the LGBT community. He has made that clear with his pronouncements on homosexuality. So…he is as guilty as the rest of them in my opinion.
God is guilty too!
Did G-d write the Bible? If HE did he is indeed guilty too
Do you know G_D? Do you know His Word? No you don’t or else you would tremble in fear for these foolish words. And just by the way: Homosexuality like adultery and fornication is a sin, but only the homosexuals have a pride to live in sin day. There is no place in heaven for any of it. There is no place in heaven for any sin.
Well I spoke to G-d last week and he told me that he accepts me, a lesbian fully. That he loves that I am able to love my fellow human beings without any hate in my heart, He loves that I am kind and compassionate. he told me that when he wrote the bible he did not mean to hurt gays and lesbians and that people misinterpreted it. Because all those comments in relation to homosexual interpretation such as sodom and Gemorah story point to war, rape and worshiping idols, and he promised me that not a single place in the Bible condemns love between 2 people of the same-sex. So he reminded me that he created me in his image – JUST THE WAY HE WANTS ME TO BE. My G-d is a loving G-d and hence I walk with no fear.
Melanie, as a pastor for over 30 years and counting, I applaud your article and encourage you to fight on. Blessings to you!
I really think God is quiet on the issue of homosexuality. You might ask how I believe that considering the six or seven anti-gay passages of the Bible. Simple – the assumption back then was that you were a heterosexual. So going against your heterosexuality would be a sin. The concept that someone could be born a homosexual was never thought of. As a result, the passages against homosexuality are rendered null and void, as we know today that the assumption is flawed. There was a little book I got out of my library and read in a day called “God Believes in Love,” written by a NH bishop who happened to be happily married to his husband that explained all of this.
However, not very many Christians understand this, or even seek to. Very few read the about the sociohistorical context of the Bible in order to understand what it is really saying. As a result, the vast majority of Christians are completely ignorant of what it says, why, and whether to take it literally. The creation story is another example of this extreme ignorance, creating an anti-science sentiment within the stupid caucus of Christianity. But I digress.
An interesting theory. However homosexuality was prevalent hen as it is now. The incorrectness of the assumptions around homosexuality in the Bible boils down to interpretation. Any passages that are USED to speak against homosexuality including Leviticus are not speaking against same-sex love, but rather the act of sodomy ONLY in the context of rape, orgy, piliage, war and violence and worship of idols. Nowhere does it speak against same-sex love. And when the Bible speaks of procreation it fails to contextualize according to current times. So some scholars and theologians believe that the Bible is an evolutionary document that must be interpreted in context of times. So today if G-d had realized that we could use sperm banks and artificial insemination he may well have condoned same-sex marriage,. But I guess HE was not thinking that far ahead – nor were those who wrote his “word” in the Bible. Has anyone thought also that maybe homosexuality – a natural concomitant of human sexuality- may have been purposely designed to curb over population. AND then what about Freedom of religion NOT to believe in Bible – surely those who do not should be allowed to have equal civil rights to others?
Just because it existed back then doesn’t mean that it was viewed as something that people “were” in comparison to what they did against their “heterosexual nature.”
If you look at all the books of the Bible, they were written for a specific audience, and therefore a certain culture, which comes with all of its assumptions as any culture does. Consider today in America – the presence of poverty and lack of economic mobility is as far reaching as ever in the country, including the great depression, but yet Americans still say you’re lazy if you’re poor and believe in the American Dream. If you believed that the widespread presence of poverty would wake people up to the stupidity of their own assumptions regarding the economy, opportunity, and personal wealth, that would be one great example of where that theory failed. Therefore, how does the presence of homosexuality back then negate the basic assumptions underlying the culture?
Also, regardless of the underlying theory of the passages regarding homosexuality, one thing remains: Jesus had numerous opportunities to have people stoned, ridiculed, etc. and only ridiculed the Pharisees who were self-righteous, much like Osteen and his contemporary brand of Christian scumbag. Jesus mandates that we actively strive for inclusion and respect, not the stoning of select so-called sinners while other sinners are conveniently “set free” of their punishment for no reason than their sins are more conceivable in our own eyes.
So why is it we so rarely hear such outrage and effort being directed against Islamic countries (or the fundamentalist Islamic factions themselves for that matter) where the penalties for homosexuality is much more harsh up to and including death by some very nasty means? As an atheist I tend not to play favorites or carry any personal axe to grind against any single specific religion. They are all fairy stories people use to justify their good and bad intentions.
I dont know where the outrage is? I have been accused of being anti-muslim when I express my outrage which I have done in the past. I alos get accused of being anti-Christian when i express my outrage against Christian extremists. I have personally helped a good many LGBT people escape anti-gay religious locations and families who have targeted them for retribution on so called “conversion” . I think people are afraid to speak out because of being pitted against a religion, accused of not allowing for religious freedom etc. My beat tends to be Africa – and we have spoke out against sharia law in certain countries. I think generally the West does not give a damn about LGBT people who do not have white faces. If they did we would be doing a lot more.. I also think that our own community in the West is very asleep on these issues… So wher is the outrage and what is the fine line?
Part of it is that in America we seem to despise anything Islamic, regardless of the specific effects on the LGBT community. So someone specifically standing up for the LGBT community would most likely also stand up for the other marginalized communities within those countries, especially women, making the LGBT message not as visible. It’s hard to separate the Islamophobia from the genuine advocacy on the part of marginalized groups in the islamic world.
Actually it is not hard to separate advocacy against brutality and murder from islamophobia in the least bit. Many folks however are just too spineless to do so because it might get them called names or threaten a “greater cause” or be politically incorrect or inconvenient or through a misguided concern over “cultural sensitive”. But bottom line, people who string people up or put bullets in people’s skulls because they don’t like who they choose to sleep with are barbarians. Muslims or Christians or people of any belief system who engage in such behavior regardless of whatever other group or special interest they may fit into. Being in a “marginalized group” doesn’t give you a hall pass from being a murderous fuckhead…no “but”s.
Christians have long been targeted and killed all over the world in muslim countries for decades. These same countries have long been persecuting gays and lesbians. Stoning them to death for just being gay. You don’t care about them, you just pick the battles you want while judging the very same Christians being killed.
At least Muslim countries ARE Muslim countries. But in democracies such as Uganda, and USA and other countries we do not pretend to be a Christian Nation by virtue of Freedom of religion Clauses in our Constitutions.
I think the Church has lost it’s way in America, and so have the leaders of the Church. I have a Gay Daughter and WOULD NEVER REJECT HER!! All I want for my Daughter is the same as anyone else…to be happy in her life. All this “Love the Sinner hate the sin” is sad, old and pathetic. Why? Because there is no action associated with the phrase. The Church says it to make themselves feel better to justify the uneasiness associated with the TRUE feelings they have against the Gay community. These “Gay’s” are our Son’s and Daughter’s and yet we can reject them? How? The Church has made it easy to do so. I know as this was the advise I was given when my Daughter came out! “Pray it out of her!” Oh my goodness! It is hard to be angry at the American Church that is so blind. After all the divorce rate is over 50% in the church. American Pastor’s in a poll confessed they have on line porn addictions. I have seen to many times Pastors who preach the loudest against Homosexuality themselves fall! Many are Homosexuals too…does anyone remember Ted Haggert? I personally heard him make comments regarding Homosexuals that left me feeling extremely uncomfortable! It was no surprise to me when His scandal hit the media. By the way He is back in Colorado Springs starting a new Church and in His Wife’s book referred to the Homosexual Male Prostitute as the “Devil.” There needs to be an open dialogue by American Church leaders in the country with “eye’s wide open” regarding the hidden agenda many feel the Church has against Homosexuals. Sadly, the money that flows into the churches won’t allow this to happen. So to the Church…Time to be Sanctified through honesty. If you truly love humanity, then this can happen. The Church’s refusal will speak loudly about how it really feels.
This is crap that your blog blogging about…living a xtian life is not necessarily as little as gayism is.What u want Osteen to do is off the record.We don’t call for hatred if gays,we call for unity of all as normal human beings created in the image of the Almighty God.And in so doing,Joel Osteen as far as i no him,is NOT GAY.So u coming here and saying that his silence towards Uganda’s anti gay law is ‘depressive’ to you makes no importance to him being a senior pastor.He cannot encourage what his faith is against.So just because America thumbed up homosexuality doesn’t mean or give you a right to thumb it for us through a pastor.He preaches peace which we encourage but we shall not accept to have such disgusting laws to govern African countries too.If u are so concerned about human rights,let them have boundaries coz i don’t believe a gay person is born but rather made and so is homosexuality.If they are being persecuted that’s because they are in the opposite side of humanity.Being gay is not right its someone’s state of mind so i don’t think Joel os to blame anywhere here and neither os Christianity coz its actually condemned.if u need someone to blame,try the person who legalised homosexuality in your country,coz for sure he brainwashed you of all human dignity and left you seeing it as a human right.Good Day
Well you certainly are entitled to your own opinion. However the thousands of gays in African acountries will tell you that its not fun to be ostracized by your own people so tey would not make the choice to be LGBT if they were not born that way. Why would anyone want to be what they are not? If you are truly straight – which you may not be because you seem so homophobic and homophobes are often themselves gay – then can you imagine having sex with someone of the same-sex? No you cannot imagine that if you are straight right? So you can imagine how hard it is for gay people to have sex with opposite sex. It goes against what nature made them to be . You misinterpret Bible along with the Olsteen types. I am sad you have such hate and fear in your hear. That is NOT what my Bible taught me. I pray you may have the courage of David and the compassionate heart of Jesus