Monday, December 12, 2011 - 5:04pm by Kimberley McLeod, GLAAD's Communities of African Descent Media Field Strategist
The Star-Ledger, New Jersey's highest-circulating online and print newspaper, informally surveyed a number of Newark African American pastors on LGBT equality and acceptance in the Black church. Some pastors expressed that there are a number of gay members of Black churches, but many are not open with their orientation. While this indicates that there is progress to be made, the article noted the growing acceptance in Black churches:
“A random sampling of black ministers in the Newark area found many are aware of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and [transgender] men and women in their congregations, singing in the choir or working in a church office. And they are willing to welcome them with open arms.”
This is a significant step forward for many of the congregations named in the article; however, placing barriers to participation is not fully inclusive. Although the piece mentioned LGBT people “singing in the choir and working in the church office,” church leadership by someone openly LGBT is not specifically addressed.
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