The Church and Homosexuality

In its prospectus for study prepared by the Advisory Council on Church and Society and accepted by the task force at its first meeting, the group's purpose was described this way:

1. Identify and evaluate various theological and biblical perspectives on homosexuality, giving attention to specific biblical texts and themes. Give attention to confessional stands and specific attention to the positions taken by the 182nd General Assembly (1970).

2. Survey general studies and research, and assess theories and assumptions about homosexuality in light of biblical and theological perspectives and current understandings about homosexuality in the social and behavioral sciences, in homophile groups, and in society at large.

3. Identify and evaluate areas of ethical concern, with particular emphasis on personal freedom, personal responsibility, and human rights, and discriminatory practices, both in the church and in society generally.

4. Suggest guidelines for faithful Christian response to the conflicts between values, rights, and human communities manifest in relation to homosexuality, both in the life of the church, including ordination, and with respect to broad social policies.

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