Tuesday, May 06, 2008

christian morality vs. HRCs


Christian morality and Canadian Human Rights Commissions come to blows again. This time in Ontario, where the OHRC has come down hard on Christian Horizons, a mission to the developmentally challenged. A condition of employment at Christian Horizons is that staff sign the mission's code of conduct which includes a ban on unbiblical sexual behavior such as adultery, sex before marriage and homosexuality.

This was challenged when a former lesbian employee took the matter to the OHRC, alleging that Christian Horizons had discriminated against her (whether she resigned or was fired is not clear).

The result, as reported by Nigel Hannaford in the Calgary Herald:

The OHRC... order(ed) Christian Horizons to pay her money. And to change its culture. "Christian Horizons shall develop and adopt an anti-discrimination and an anti-harassment policy as well as a human rights training program for all employees and managers . . . [and] shall cease and desist from imposing the Lifestyle and Morality Statement as a condition of employment."

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This ruling despite the fact that Canada needs Christian organizations to help deal with the poor, destitute and marginalized. Michael Coren (Toronto Sun):

Quite simply, without Christian groups and Christian people the social welfare network of Canada would collapse. This is not hyperbole. Walk along almost any main street and look at the names of the houses, associations and institutes that care for the poor, the abused, the marginalized, irrespective of their gender, race, religion or sexuality.

Christian welfare groups tend to be the most successful in dealing with the needy, much of their work is performed by volunteers and most of their money comes from donations.They are motivated by their faith -- the same faith that leads them to sign morality statements and not to lie, cheat, be promiscuous or, sorry, engage in homosexual sex. Goodness, this isn't brain surgery. If people want to be homosexual, that is their business. If people want to be Christian, it should be theirs.

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Aside from wringing our hands, what can Christians do?

1. We can pray. "If my people, who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

(Personally I've taken to praying against HRCs in an imprecatory Psalm way - using words from Psalm 40: "Let them (HRCs) be ashamed and brought to mutual confusion, Let them be driven backward and brought to dishonor. Let them be confounded because of their shame.")

2. We need to get used to the idea that the days of the state and church working together are pretty much over in Canada. For far too long we've been silenced by the fear that our speaking out will compromise our church's tax-exempt status. Personally, I think we should repudiate that status and refuse to take any public monies, even though this would have huge ramifications, especially on Christian schools. And it probably wouldn't stop the HRCs from coming after us. But at least they would no longer have the "public money" reason to bully us on matters of morality.

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