Saturday, March 29, 2008

Pastoral Care On Homosexuality - Part 2


There are four seasons of recovery a homosexual need to take in order to come out of homosexuality.
The first season of recovery is called the ‘Educational Season.’ In this season, a homosexual need to change his behavior. They will need to learn and unlearn many behaviors. In Exodus International, a Christian organization they teach the homosexuals on obedience and changing of behaviors, ‘This means quickly and completely cutting off all associations with the homosexual lifestyle – which includes those people and places like gay friends, gay bars, pro-gay groups like the Metropolitan Community Church, Evangelical Concern and liberal mainline churches who support the homosexual active person.’ As pastors, in this season, we need to educate them the difference between sexual orientation and sexual lifestyle.
The second season of recovery is called the ‘Celibate Season’. In this season a homosexual must totally reject the homosexual lifestyle. They will need to build deep platonic relationships (DPR) with people of the same gender. DPR is a deep relationship between two people but it is non-sexual. This is a tough season, as pastors we must truly walk closely with them and monitor them with love to make sure that they are transparent towards us. In order to help this homosexual, as pastors in this season we need to encourage the homosexual to pursue DPR with a heterosexual individual or someone who rejected homosexuality for many years. In this season, as a pastor we need to make them understand and receive God’s grace, love and forgiveness. We need to make them accept themselves for who they are, including things about their body that are basically unchangeable.
The third season of recovery is called the ‘dating season’. In this season the ex-homosexual is now ready to date people of the opposite gender as they are now totally filled with love from the people of the same gender by sharing only DPR. This is very new to the ex-homosexual as pastors we must make them understand and get them excited. They need to realize that this is an opening journey to a new life for them. As a pastor, we need to let the ex-homosexual know that not all dates will be successful but it’s a growing process and the ex-homosexual need to pursue this until they are totally ready for a very deep romantic relationship with one of the selected dates. They will struggle because many homosexuals have a barrier issue towards people of the opposite gender. They find it hard to get sexually attracted to people of the opposite gender but they must do it in order to move forward to be heterosexual.
The forth and final stage is called the ‘Marriage Season’ . This is a victory for an ex-gay individual and even as a pastor who is journeying with them. This season is lifetime and they can now enjoy the plans that God has for them individually. By now the ex-homosexual is ready for marriage and will move on their journey into a brand new and exciting life.
As we can see, through those journey of recovery, as a pastor, we play and important role in the life of the homosexual. We are dealing with their inner man and it is very fragile. This is a long process and as pastors if we are not capable to journey with a homosexual, we need to make sure that we provide someone who can. As pastors, it is vital to educate our church on this issue so that we will always be prepared what such issues arises.

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