Wednesday, June 23, 2010

"Unconscionable"

That's what Hope Lutheran Church calls a recent article about its pastor, Tom Brock. And we agree wholeheartedly.

Under Brock's leadership, Hope left the ELCA not long ago, complaining bitterly about its plans to accept the service of gay pastors in committed and publicly accountable same-sex partnerships. A bad move, in our opinion, but one that's not the point here.

The point is that a magazine called Lavender has since discovered that Brock attends a confidential 12-step program for people struggling with their homosexuality. It did this by sending in an undercover reporter, who then reported what happened. In the confidential meetings.

There's a word for this sort of reporting: Unethical. Also cruel, and deceitful. The MinnPost article linked above does a good job of drawing out some of the ethical problems, up to and including the outright hypocrisy of the Lavender staff. Bottom line: they call them "anonymous" for a reason.

Regular readers know that we enjoy publicizing the hypocrisy of those we dislike. (The picture of Rumsfeld shaking hands with Saddam hangs over out bed like a sacred talisman). But in Brock's case, there is no hypocrisy. Brock wasn't caught soliciting sex in an airport bathroom, or traveling with a companion from "Rentboy.com." He thinks of his own sexual longing as a disorder, and he is seeking help. We may think that he is mistaken, both about the nature of sexuality and about the nature of the Church, but we see nothing in this story which reveals a lack of integrity.

On Brock's part, that is. Lavender is quite another story.

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