By Patrick King Pascual, VERA FilesComing to terms with one's self is not easy for homosexuals in a society where gender is limited to either male or female.Raymond Alikpala, 46, a lawyer and formerly a seminarian, knows very well the anguish of living in the shadows having done so in the first 38 years of his life."I came out because I was tired of hiding who I really am. I wanted to be able to finally live my life honestly and proudly. I stopped caring about what others would think should they find out I am bakla (gay)," says Alikpala.He shares his story of growing up a devout Catholic and harboring the secret of his homosexuality in a book "Of God and Men" to be launched June 16, 2012 at 3 p.m. at Bestsellers Bookstore, 4th Level, Robinson's Galleria, Pasig City.Alikpala said a number of his friends encouraged him to write his story "as catharsis for my years in the closet." He felt however that "it was much more than that."Perhaps because of his years in the seminary, Alikpala's objective in writing the book is more evangelical. "To spread the good news that God loves bakla, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders and transsexuals as much as She loves all Her other children."Alikpala narrates in the book his experiences growing up in a Catholic family and finishing his studies in a Catholic school. He recounts his struggles with living in the closet while practicing law and while engaged in humanitarian efforts with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Cambodia.He was a blue-blooded Atenean, an honor student from grade school to law school. He took up his Master of Laws in Singapore.Raymond AlikpalaWith his Master of laws, he came back to Manila and entered the seminary to train as a priest. He lasted only 16 months.He began his law practice in Makati-based law firms, before he decided to go to Cambodia to join the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) working with asylum seekers and refugees. He also worked with a Cambodian law firm advising foreign investors.He quoted in his book the advice of his Jesuit mentor: "Fr. Joel's initial advice was to try to be at peace with myself, to learn to accept myself as I was. He told me to pray for the grace of peace and self-understanding. He said that I should learn to accept my homosexuality peacefully, and then learn to go beyond it, to transcend it, because it did not have to limit or define who I was."Alikpala believes, "Being gay is a special grace from God."He enjoins fellow gays who are still living in the shadows to "Embrace it, do not hide it.""God is happier if you recognize the gift that is homosexuality and live your life accordingly. This is the only truly lasting way to happiness and fulfilment," he adds.A milestone in Alikpala's life was his getting "married.""Robert and I were married on 14 June 2008. It was not a legal ceremony; neither Philippine nor Vietnamese civil laws recognize same-sex marriages. It has been the fashion to call this a 'commitment ceremony,' but for Robert and me, ours is a real marriage, we have made our own vows before God," he relates.Describing himself as "an open-minded Christian," Alikpala views US President Barrack Obama's declaration of support for same-sex marriage as a monumental event for the entire Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) community."He said that his position on the issue has ''evolved" over the years, and this mirrors the experience of the majority of people," says Alikpala.The Philippine Catholic Church and conservative Filipinos have criticized Obama's support for same-sex marriage. Alikpala asks people to have an open mind about it."Many of us grew up being told that being gay is something evil, but we have since come to realize that there is nothing wrong with being gay. Obama's courage and leadership, I hope, will inspire others to open their minds and hearts toward greater compassion, tolerance and acceptance in our society," he says.Alikpala has joined Ladlad, the political party of Filipino LGBTs upon the invitation of Malu Marin, executive director of Action for Health Initiatives (ACHIEVE) and Danton Remoto, chairman of Ladlad Party List."I saw Ladlad as the natural progression of LGBT advocacy from the streets and into a more formal legislative struggle to win rights for all LGBT persons. Ladlad is a critically important platform and its legislative strategy appeals directly to me as a lawyer," Alikpala explains.In the 2013 elections, he will be the third congressional nominee of Ladlad partylist.(VERA Files is put out by veteran journalists taking a deeper look at current issues. Vera is Latin for "true.")from: http://ph.news.yahoo.com/blogs/the-inbox/god-loves-lgbts-says-author-121912402.html
SO, what is the point you want to convey? That homosexuality is blessed by God? Actually, I do not find this article edifying.If you want to share how people are snookered into this whorl of deception, we all know that - there are too many reminders of it here in the states. We know it is horrible and we grieve for those who are bound by this sin.God bless.
This article points out something that is going on in society that I have been trying to understand myself. On one side we, as Christians, believe homosexuality is wrong and immoral and we cite a few scripture to prove it about man lying with another man and so forth. Some also cite sodom and Gommorrah as well but I have learned scripture doesn't cite homosexuality as the reason why it was destroyed. On the other side we have people who are coming out and who are also living in the shadows who say they struggle hard with homosexuality and there seems to be something there because many fight hard against this pull in themselves. This is where the law meets reality in my opinion. It is apparent to me there is something going on in the brain or in biology causing people to be attracted to the same sex. I think it is too easy at times to call it demonic - it really is the easy way out to label it as such for all incidents. Yet, I have often asked myself what is really going on here? Even 'high profile' christians have come out and declared themselves as homosexuals. I think of Ray Boltz, who I recently found out, left his family and moved in with his lover yet all the while I always saw some feminine qualities about him in the past and always wondered.I have struggled to understand what is going on with this thing and I think it is wrong of Christians to point the finger and offer condemnation to these people. After all, if you are on the other side of the receiving end and struggle greatly inside with this mess would you not feel that God hates you now if a Christian is condeming you for being or feeling homosexual? Yes, I believe it is wrong but I also believe the condemnation of these people is is probably twice as wrong. For the record, I have an uncle who is homosexual but I don't know if he practices but he has never mentioned anything about a boyfriend of any kind. He goes to a 'gay church' as well. I also have an ex friend who became gay. He mentioned the struggles in his past about it and he was a worship leader in the church in which I met him. He was an avid lover of Rod Parsley and had huge library of worship and praise music from hosanna and integrity music. He used to 'preach to the angels' in his room meaning preach to the air in pretend mode. He came out and succumbed to homosexuality. This is what I mean but there being something there that is wrong but to offer condemnation is twice as wrong. btw, he is an ex friend because he had a domineering personality which I could not tolerate and therefore split ways from him to free myself from that bondage. The guy in this article is another cry for that help in which he is helpless. I have to ask why is it that God is not delivered these people from this THING? I think that is the question to ask. And again, for another time I am still trying to figure out what is going on with this because something is indeed happening in their bodies that sometimes almost seems genetic in some cases but being that scripture calls it out we have a problems in understanding the complex workings of it.in conclusion, I have to ask, in light of this tender subject, how much of the law are we going to use to attack this subject, vs. how much grace and understanding will be used to reach out to the heart?Just my opinionJohn
ginnyrose,No, sorry, I don't mean to offend, I just posted it to inform what is going on... this is the News section right,DEADn,If we are more willing to be healed from cancer, or other deceases than to be healed from homosexuality, we are deceived... for our soul is more important than our bodies, no one goes to hell for having cancer, or tumor. Even a deceased person will not insist that his sickness is base on biological disorders. No, he just want to be healed.God gives grace to the humble and He opposes the proud - either being proud on our sin or our self-justification. As Jesus said, He came to cure sick people not those who think they are already righteous.Homosexuality is not the only sin but it is a tragedy how a homosexual can be in a church for a year, and yet be comfortable without conviction. And how they use the name of GOD to justify it.
If we are more willing to be healed from cancer, or other deceases than to be healed from homosexuality, we are deceived
There is something to be said about the spirit of Sodomy; it is deeply tied into the spirit of lawlessness; It is when the demonic promote PERMISSIVENESS as Righteousness, and judicialize it by common majority.The ancient title given to this unclean act, was of course taken from the city, of the four wicked plain cities in modern day Israel, Sodom. The people of that city evidently chose,in majority, to rape to death certain unaware strangers as random acts of entertainment. "ALL THE PEOPLE FROM EVERY QUARTER.....' But before they [ THE ANGELS OF THE LORD..] lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them."The whole city came out to be entertained......Thus, the grossest and most vile and cruel demons were released upon the world as the norm; as a completely natural and democratic right. Paul describes this state of mind as reprobate; which simply means the conscience is seared as with a hot iron. In effect; people that have no conscience. ANYTHING GOES! This is the level of sin that is now being released upon the world, and legislated upon the Citizens of the USA by executive order from an anti-Christian President. We have not yet seen the full fruit of this plague. There has been a series of cannibalistic and Zombie-like murders recently; odd things that were once confined to horror movies.Concerning the homosexual himself, he or she is as we, lost and needful of a Savior, and are welcomed by a loving God to be covered by the blood, washed and clean; accepted into the beloved. Paul said; "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers,... nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you:" but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."If so, they are mine, as you are anyone other on Earth are who have been born from above, and walk in holiness. The key is Repenting, and rejecting sin, while clinging to mercy in Jesus. If this does not happen, they are none of His.[ I have preached in the Castro, of San Francisco, the most infested castle of Sodomy on earth, and have seen some delivered, thank God.]We must stand where Jesus stands on this issue, and against the spirit of Sodomy, but not against the individual that may desire God to cleanse him.
Well said Brothertom.
If there TRULY is a genetic component to homosexuality, it complicates the issue.Apparently they have identified a gene that tends a person toward alcoholism. However, having this gene is not the end of the story; a person who has this gene and becomes an alcoholic has no excuse; he still must abstain from alcohol.Similarly, if a person has inherited homosexual tendencies through his genetic makeup, he must still abstain from acting on those impulses.Why? Because now they believe they have identified a gene that tends a person toward pedophilia. Surely no reasonable person would argue that this somehow "allows" a person with this gene to act on his impulses.A person with a gene for obesity has to watch what they eat. It is probably safe to say that some day a gene will be identified for everything, including lying, stealing, violence, sloth, etc. But the Bible places the responsibility for sin on the sinner, not God. If there are TRULY genes that tends people toward certain behaviors which the Bible says are sinful, it is something of a mystery. But that is what separates humans from animals-- humans are required to not act out their base impulses and in fact are able to not do so, if they resist.
To my current knowledge of the discussion, the "genetic" question is still nothing other than a Red Herring. There is no proven, in spite of attempts to find it, genetic linkage to homosexuality (that is not to say it does not exist it is just to say that as of now there is no proof even though scientists have already tried to find it.) In our atmosphere of theoretical science, theory is often good enough to be evidence. Unfortunately I am pretty sure there is, in fact, no evidence, and unless a preponderance of it surfaces, the idea of it should not enter our minds.