Nashville faith leaders fire back at writers of anti-gay marriag - WSMV News 4

Nashville faith leaders fire back at writers of anti-gay marriage manifesto

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood has created the “Nashville Statement,” stating that marriage is between one man and one woman.

It has been signed by professors, counselors and pastors. But Mayor Megan Barry, along with several other leaders and residents said despite its name, the statement has no place in Nashville.

Those who sign the statement agree they “affirm that God has designed marriage to be a covenantal, sexual, procreative, lifelong union between one man and woman,” and they deny homosexual or polygamous relationships.

Barry tweeted Tuesday morning that the “so-called ‘Nashville Statement’ is poorly named and does not represent the inclusive values of the city & people of Nashville.”

“They used Nashville in the context, and that’s not our Nashville,” Barry said. “I wanted to be very clear that was not something Nashville was coming out with.”

The initiative talks about Western culture becoming post-Christian. It says the 21st century creates great challenges to the church and now is the time to affirm traditional marriage values.

Click here to read the full statement.

Grace Pointe Senior Pastor Stan Mitchell said 17 years ago, he too would have signed the statement. But he said he had a change or heart after speaking to many LGBT kids.

"We just want everyone to know, especially gay people, especially the gay kid that might be watching, their are tons of us that serve God, follow Jesus, read the Bible, who call ourselves Christian who do not agree," Mitchell said.

The agreement dives deeper into what the group calls “transgenderism” and says approving of it is sinful and dishonorable to God.

"Trying to impose first-century ideals on 21st-century thought is anachronistic, it's archaic, and in these settings it is becoming barbaric," Mitchell said.

A group of Nashville faith-based leaders put out a document Wednesday called the Accurate Nashville Statement. Signing it means you believe regardless of sexuality or gender, God loves everyone just the way they are.

News 4 reached out to the coalition to see why it used Nashville in the name. Its president, Denny Burk said it was because the coalition finalized the draft at a conference in the city.

He also said the coalition has been wrongly accused of hate. Burk said as Christians, they love the gay community. They just don't love their actions.

Tennessee Sen. Jim Tracy, R-Shelbyville, echoes that statement.

"I believe what the Bible says, but I do believe we love everyone too. It teaches to love everyone. You can believe marriage is between a man and woman, but you still love everybody," Tracy said.

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