Obama asks gay Bishop Gene Robinson to give prayer at Easter breakfast

President Obama this morning asked retired openly-gay Episcopal Bishop Gene Robinson to give the closing prayer at the White House Easter Prayer Breakfast.

The President had invited 150 Christian leaders to the White House to kick off Holy Week.

Robinson, was who apparently surprised by the President’s request, announced the news via Twitter.


Bishop Gene Robinson (source: janinsanfran)

Bishop Gene Robinson (source: janinsanfran)

Robinson is famous for a brouhaha that happened during his election as Bishop, as he was both openly-gay and in a relationship with a man.

Robinson’s ordination led to a number of conservative American Episcopalians breaking with the US church and aligning themselves with the crazier, and anti-gay, factions of the Anglican church that tend to reside in Africa, though the head of the church in England is also a bit of a raving bigot.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who is the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican church, recently told a radio interviewer that Anglicans must discriminate against gays, lest gay-bashers get confused and think Anglicans are gay too.

I wrote about Welby last week:

In an interview on LBC radio, Welby said that if the Anglican church accepted gay marriage it would be “absolutely catastrophic” for Christians in Africa.  Why?  Welby explained that he had recently visited south Sudan where he saw 369 bodies in a grave.  They were allegedly Christians who were killed because the locals feared that “if we leave a Christian community here we will all be made to become homosexual and so we will kill all the Christians.”

Welby, apparently swayed by the unassailable logic of bigots, suggested that the Sudanese Christians were killed because America is too pro-gay, or something.

Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury, head of the Anglican church (photo by Ellif)

Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury, head of the Anglican church (photo by Ellif)

He said this in response to a caller asking about the Anglicans embracing gay marriage: “The impact of that on Christians in countries far from here, like South Sudan, like Pakistan, Nigeria and other places would be absolutely catastrophic and we have to love them as much as the people who are here. I’ve stood by a graveside in Africa of a group of Christians who’d been attacked because of something that had happened far, far away in America. And they were attacked by other people because of that.”

Members of an English church were killed because some American states have finally legalized gay marriage?  Really?

Welby’s conclusion was, therefore, that Anglicans need to be more anti-gay in order to convince potential future gay-bashers to skip Anglicans when choosing their victims.

Nice man.

So that’s the larger context here. It matters that President Obama is embracing an openly-gay Episcopal Bishop.

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CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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77 Responses to “Obama asks gay Bishop Gene Robinson to give prayer at Easter breakfast”

  1. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    So what makes your interpretation correct and others wrong? Other than hubris on your part. I do not know you. I will rely on the people I know.

    Why is eating shellfish or touching a football abominations?

    It is so tacky to give your own post an up vote. If you’re so right, someone else will come along and do that.

  2. David_Smith says:

    What it doesn’t mean is engaging in homosexual acts is anything but an abomination… the mixing together of what should be separate. I read Hebrew and Greek too friend and the Bible condemns homosexuality in both the old and new testament.

  3. David_Smith says:

    Obama is a pretender and the priest is part of the growing apostate counterfeit church that will align with the anti-Christ in the last days.

  4. @worldnetdaily approved comment. FYI @ = a twitter ID you can look up by removing the @ and adding twitter.com/ in it’s stead.

    #nswpol All Hail the #gaymarriage #fail @BishopGRobinson on @AlexGreenwich MP’s order #auspol

    Gay MP Alex Greenwich in Australia who trademarked his own pubic hair (see my tweets) in relation to the “BondiBoys” IP Australia trademark (see http://bondiboys.blogspot.com before he deletes it & http://www.ipaustralia.com.au/applicant/greenwich-alex/trademarks/1263549/) orders the NSW Parliament to praise this now divorced gay ex-Bishop

    The youtube video shared on twitter’s description has lots of information on all the trouble Gene Robinson caused for the Anglican Church.



    See how much of a joke the gay mafia is – my twitter gaysabovethelaw is there for you tall all investigate. I’m a UNHCR confirmed refugee from NSW GLLO Gay Police persecution.



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  5. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    That’s your opinion and your interpretation. My pastor and bishop are trained in Hebrew and ancient Greek. Their opinion is not the same as yours. I know them and not you, so I’ll believe them. Again, you believe you know the correct answer. Hubris! Perhaps we should rebuke you for being a False Teacher, because if your interpretation is different than ELCA, you may very well be teaching false doctrine. Again it is interpretation. I cannot interpret everything in the Bible, because I do not know Hebrew and ancient Greek. I turn to the people I know for interpretation, and that is not you.

    What do you think abomination means? Why are some abominations so terrible, and other abominations completely ignored by many Christianists? What do you believe Christianists means?

  6. Skip Pallo says:

    Sir you are so incorrect it is appalling, If 5 Apostates say incest is ok Biblically does that mean it is, No Read the Text not the versions, I am trained in both Hebrew and Greek this is an Abomination and has been for over 2000 years it is nothing new and it has nothing to do with prostitutes. Religion is personal yes, however it is also the responsibility of all Christians to teach against False Teachers (publicly), Reprove, Rebuke, and Exhort with all long suffering and Doctrine. Be instant in season and out of season (that mean when its popular and when its not) Sir. I have preached and taught against this for over 30 years and debated people like Madalyn Murray O’Hare and Glen Maxey with the gay group the Oral Majority back in the 1980’s nothing has changed. It is still the same fight and still the same ignorant false arguments. Had her own people (Atheists) not killed her for the gold the Atheist had invested in we would still be arguing the issue. Glen wouldn’t even accept a debate proposal we made concerning this issue on the Biblical aspect condemning it and wouldn’t even accept my phone calls to discuss the debate. Read Robertson on Romans. To make it perfectly clear Sir, Are they wrong, The answer is Absolutely Yes, and it is provable both from the Old Testament and the New. So if this is an Atheistic rant don’t responding your out of your field of expertise.

  7. Randy Williams says:

    I’ll bet HELL has a special place for that Queer. And likely, Obama too.

  8. Ali Mhjoub says:

    Homosexual Priest! I don’t care what position he is, he should not involve himself with God’s work, for he should know that God does not approve of his homosexual activity choice.

  9. Badgerite says:

    Oh, thank you. This gives me an opportunity to quote from the forward by Desmond Tutu again.

    “He was, he still is, a man with an all-consuming passion, and that is to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ, to assure as many as will hear him of their infinite worth in the sight of God who loved them and still loves them with a love that is unconditional and that will not let them go. Gene Robinson has the heart of a pastor, compassionate and deeply caring for each person whatever that person’s condition. He tells so movingly of the Christmas present he gives himself every year since becoming bishop. On Christmas Eve he goes to New Hampshire State Prison for Women, and he has endeared himself so much to these inmates that they embroidered a set of vestments on the inside of which they stitched their names. This Advent vestment set is his favorite among his ecclesiastical garb.”

    We should all be so “spiritually dead”.

  10. pericles9 says:

    What an honor to be challenged by you! Thank you so much.

  11. tedhayes says:

    This one fellow keeps suggesting you watch The Simpsons. I wonder if that’s where he finds his biblical “knowledge.” He has made mention of his credentials to be subjecting you to name-calling.

  12. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Are you telling me that all divorced people in Christian churches only divorced because of adultery?

  13. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Sticking with the name calling, are you?

  14. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Ooooh, that’s a good argument. Name calling is always better than facts.

  15. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    I see. Not only should everybody believe what your religion believes, but yours is the only brand of your religion that is acceptable. Many Christian denominations do not believe what you believe. Are they wrong? Apparently, that’s what you believe. Many denominations believe that your passage from Romans is about ritual prostitution practiced in pagan temples, but your brand of Christianity knows it is correct. God has decided to only give true understanding to your denomination. Hubris!

  16. tedhayes says:

    Mike, you can’t argue with fundamentalist crazies or Faux News devotees. Their “shouting” reminds me of the story of the church custodian who entered the sanctuary on a Monday morning and found that the pastor had left his Bible and sermon notes, from the Sunday service, on the pulpit. He noted that the pastor at one point had written in the margin of his notes, “Point weak here. Yell like hell!”

  17. tedhayes says:

    It’s a must see, Mark.

  18. simonzee1 says:

    Happy Easter to all those who share in the ressurection life and to those who are looking towards a ressurected spiritual life.

  19. simonzee1 says:

    24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised.Amen.26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. (Romans 1:24-27)

  20. simonzee1 says:

    A classic liberal apologist and strategy….no ideas…on anti-depressants… and always projecting.

  21. simonzee1 says:

    You can be a good man but spiritually dead.

  22. simonzee1 says:

    Go back to watching the Simpsons pericles9. Rick Warren is a great man and you are a small one. But you already know that by your language.

  23. simonzee1 says:

    Every comment you make just increases your score on the ignorance graph. It’s and upward trajectory my friend.

  24. simonzee1 says:

    Again I will say you have no idea.oy Go back to either reading Romans 1-3 or if you can’t be bothered go back to watching the Simpsons. Romans will tell you where you are at….exchanging the truth of God for a lie. That’s where this Bishop is at.

  25. simonzee1 says:

    You are a moron who has no biblical understandings. Christ forbade divorce except in instances of adultery as the Jews were proned to getting rid of one wife for another over small issues leaving the women vulnerable to poverty and destitution. Read the first 3 chapeters of Romans. God has given this guy over to his lusts. He is not of the Father but of the world.

  26. simonzee1 says:

    Easter is a story of ressurection life. If someone wants to be gay that is their decision but someone who confesses to be a Christian and is an adulterer or homosexual and practices such with no conviction and repentance cannot be part of the ressurection life. As such they will go to hell like the merchant banker theives and drug dealers and liars…all who do not see themselves as living in Christ in the ressurection life.

    For a practicing homosexual to be giving a speech at Easter must be some sick joke like it would be to have a speech by an adulterer or a liar or a racist. Christians believe in ressurection life not being caught is the slough of despond of secular values.

  27. Badgerite says:

    No. But I did read the book Gene Robinson wrote entitled, In The Eye of The Storm: Swept To The Center By Good, with a forward by Archbishop Desmond Tutu ( the Noble Prize winner) and all around good Christian. I guess he also is one card short of a full deck. Or — maybe you are.

  28. tedhayes says:

    Arrogant much?

  29. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    You fail to mention what you think is appalling about my comments. No one will argue that God made man and woman. They do marry, but no where does it say they have to marry. Personally, I am very happy that my parents were heterosexual.

    David and Jonathan? You can try to explain that away, but it would have helped if Jonathan had kept his clothes on.

    God condemned same gender relationships? I really do not recall such an utterance attributed to God. Please do not bring up the old saw about Sodom and Gomorrah. That was about inhospitality. Jesus was God. He would not forget to say something that needed to be said, but he did not mention homosexuality. There had to be a reason for that. If it was such a horrible sin, he would have said. In fact, why did God decide not to make it the eleventh commandment? You folks act like it’s the worse sin, where we all know that no sin is worse than another. There are some Christian denominations that do no believe being gay is a sin. Do you feel that your denomination is superior? There’s a word for that – hubris.

  30. Gary Gamble says:

    You do know that is a modern day secularist attempt to rewrite history … it is called social engineering …. and you have fallen for it …. you have been duped.
    The phrase “seperation of church and state” is not in the Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, or the FIrst Amendment. It was a comment written by Thomas Jefferson in a private letter some 14 years later after the First Amendment was passed in Congress. Thomas Jefferson had nothing to do with the design and passage of the First Amendment and wasn’t even in the country (was in France) at the time.

  31. Gary Gamble says:

    It is more about getting the communist/socialist/atheist/muslim out of office in 2016.

  32. Gary Gamble says:

    How can we stop when there are so many of you to pray about.

  33. Gary Gamble says:

    Can’t wait to get the communist/socialist/atheist out of office in 2016.

  34. Gary Gamble says:

    I would say you are are one card short of a full deck …. calling evil good … and good evil …. are you reading out of the satanic bible?

  35. Gary Gamble says:

    Your comments are appalling. God tells us how He created us and Jesus re-affirms God’s design of humans and marriage.

    Jesus stated in Mark 10:6-8, “But from the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh.”

    In the entirety of Scripture, there are no cases found anywhere that cite examples of same-sex marriage, but, on the contrary, throughout Scripture, sexual relationships between individuals of the same sex is condemned and often judged by God. (Genesis 19:13; Leviticus 18:22, 20:13; I Kings 14:24, 15:12, 22:46; 2 Kings 23:7; Romans 1:24-32)

  36. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Are you ignorant or just not familiar with The Bible. In Leviticus, it says you are not allowed to touch pigskin. You do know what footballs are made of, don’t you? You are also instructed not to wear clothing with two different types of thread. I bet your underwear is cotton and held up with elastic.

    True Christianity? I see what you want. Everyone must follow your religion. Of course, you feel that jewish people, Muslims, and Atheists must follow your religion. Not only that, but all Christian denominations must follow your brand of Christianity. Such hubris!

  37. markofthebeasts says:

    Thank you. I will look into that.

  38. loveourflag says:

    Not sure what Bible you’re reading. Never saw mention of football, elastic?? God is the judge. The point: Robinson has chosen to deny the teachings of Jesus with his lifestyle. Our President could have chosen a better example of true Christianity.

  39. John Doll says:

    The origins of Easter:


    With that being said I could not care less if Barry asked Rupaul to give the closing prayer. Obama is a fraud. Gene (Vickie) Robinson is a fraud. Easter is a fraud.

  40. Mark_in_MN says:

    From the US side of the ocean and a vantage point outside of the Anglican/Episcopal tradition (which may give some advantages and plenty of blind spots, I note), it seems that the Church of England is in a situation where more liberal and tolerant people have only nominal or no religious connections, or belong to non-Anglican or non-Christian religion. And this is so at a much greater rate than in the United States, even with the continuing trend in the US. Thus a notable percentage of those who are active in the CofE tend to be more toward the conservative side. It can also lead those who are moderate to liberal to place significant value on holding together the church as it now exists.

    Additionally, the Church of England, has a cultural place of preserving tradition and Englishness that is not a burden of the Episcopal Church in the U.S.

  41. Butch1 says:

    Ha! News travels by mule train over the passes out here. ;-)

  42. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Butch, it has already happened.

  43. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    Where to start, where to start? Jesus teachings did not mention homosexuality. He did oppose divorce however. There are many more divorced people walking around than gay people.

    Do you follow everything in the Bible? That would mean you do not eat shellfish, play football, or have elastic in any of your clothing. That would be part of God’s teachings.

    You’re not judging Bishop Robinson are you? Your “appalling” comment makes me think so. You know what happens to those who judge, don’t you?

  44. Pandapat11 says:

    This is apalling…this is not what Christianity is about. Easter is about the Ressurection of Christ who says a marriage is between man and woman. We are all sinners and we love the sinner and hate the sin. We cannot pick what we want from Jesus’ teaching and discard or ignore the rest like a restaurant menu. When we follow God, we accept everything he teaches, even what we do not understand we accept and believe through faith. Use credible people to do Jesus’ work and continue to pray for those who are not in a state of grace.

  45. Butch1 says:

    You do not have a clue what you are talking about. He lived a lie and finally decided not to anymore. The man is gay and has said so. I think I believe him over you. Just because he was previously married and has children from that marriage only means he tried to live a lie that he thought would perhaps “cure” him. It didn’t work and it doesn’t work as we all know. Considering his age and those times, many men thought that was the only route to happiness; getting married and having a family. You know, being “normal.” That is what we thought was normal at the time. We believed the BS we were being fed from all the straight professionals and even the journals at the time claimed that homosexuality was a disease to be treated. They were wrong! The know it now and that has all changed, thank goodness. Homosexuality is just a variation of normal, period.

    You can blame him if you want to; I blame society for putting such pressure on us to the point that we had to lie. It was considered a disease and it was against the law to be caught doing a homosexual act. If someone asked you back then if you were gay you probably would have lied too. You would have been beaten to a pulp, arrested, your name splashed on the front page of the news paper and you would have lost your job and your apartment. You don’t think you would have lied? Go ahead and point your finger at someone. You are a little man for even going there.

    Why are you even here on this site? Do you get off being around gays and lesbians and some straights who are friendly to us? Are you a latent homosexual? Are you curious? You must be if you weren’t hanging around here, Dannyboy.

  46. Butch1 says:

    Will his prayer be during a televised event this time or will it be like the last time when they unplugged the equipment and gave this bishop the shaft and the very end where no one was even listening on the national stage? It was insulting how he was treated the last time, so I wonder if it’s because the president isn’t running for office anymore and doesn’t have to worry what anyone thinks and can tweak the nose of the homophobic archbishop. Who knows, though he does like to stir the pot occasionally.

  47. gratuitous says:

    There is an excellent documentary “For the Bible Tells Me So” that tells the stories of Bishop Robinson and others. I don’t have a Netflix account, but I’d guess it’s available there. Well worth the time to seek it out and watch it.

  48. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    You have had a DISQUS account for three weeks, and you have made 114 comments. All of them about gays. You, my dear, are a latent homosexual. You think more about being gay than I do. BTW – we come with fully functional sexual equipment. We are capable of intercourse with women. Many gay men do. That does not make them bisexual. In fact, my husband has a name for gays who have never had never had intercourse with a woman – Gold Standard Gays. There are not as many as one would think. The really great thing is when a gay man has intercourse with a woman for whatever reason, his gay friends don’t suddenly start calling him a breeder.

  49. Dannyboy says:

    Robinson is bi-sexual, not homosexual. He deceived his wife, he lied to people, he broke up his marriage, he lied to his children, he broke his marriage oath, and he broke his religious vows. The man is a liar and a scoundrel. That he is a hero of the homosexual crowd says a lot about that lobby.

  50. Indigo says:

    A bishop is a bishop is a bishop. Had he been elected, would he have started in with the bishop-ing? We’ll never know, fortunately.

  51. Badgerite says:

    Very good choice.

  52. EdA says:

    Over 99.9% of Republicans in Congress claim Jesus as their savior and a great many of them even claim that the Bible is the inspired and inalienable word of god. This is why their response to Jesus’ explicit admonition in Matthew 25 that the way that people treat the sick, the hungry, the homeless is the way that they are treating him personally has been to vote over 50 times to leave their lord and savior suffering with illness and to vote umpteen times to leave their lord and savior homeless and hungry as well, even though, assuming that they actually believe what they claim to believe — a pretty big assumption given the general nature of these fundamentalist Christianist sociopaths and psychopaths, they will burn in hell until the end of time and beyond.

    That’s not me speaking, that’s Rain’s own personal god speaking.

  53. EdA says:

    Hey, Mr. Etch-A-Sketch was a Mormon bishop for a while. I guess it must have just been modesty and shyness that kept Romney from mentioning it much during his campaign.

  54. EdA says:

    You left out the part about him also being a Moslem who, inexplicably, spent twenty years going to church services preached by a radical unAmerican anti-American protestant preacher.

    Incidentally, I’ve never heard any birther explain why a very pregnant American grad student would make a fairly arduous and fairly expensive trip to colonial Kenya, then still with recurrent violence, in order to give birth in a facility that very likely did not quite come up to the standards common at health center in Hawaii, most other parts of the United States, or the United Kingdom.

  55. pericles9 says:

    I’ve been waiting for six years for the Prez to give time to Bishop Robinson. Remember that he had the wanker Rick Warren speak at the 1st inaugural. Lots of us were disappointed.

  56. tedhayes says:

    Good for Gene, but when are they gonna stop these prayer breakfasts?

  57. Indigo says:

    Obviously. The problem, however, is that we have far more priests on hand than kings.

  58. 2karmanot says:

    Africa is at the nadir thanks to centuries of colonialism and deformed Christianity. Statically speaking, it’s greatest contribution to the world’s misery is now AIDS, tuberculosis, and child brides.

  59. 2karmanot says:

    No, genuine legalistic zealots following history’s best selling fiction.

  60. 2karmanot says:

    I trust it’s not too Godwin of me to bring up Diderot again: “”Men will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.”

  61. 2karmanot says:

    Because the Easter Bunny rolled back the stone of the tomb and found the baby Jesus eating some chocolate eggs.

  62. 2karmanot says:

    Homosexual? Ever heard the word ‘Gay’?

  63. 2karmanot says:

    You forgot #snark.

  64. therain says:

    By “fundies” I assume you mean “genuinely spiritual”.

  65. therain says:

    I don’t even know what that means, it’s probably some fruity term you homosexuals use. Anyway, again obama shows he’s not interested in the vast majority of the country, only in his special buddies.

  66. therain says:

    Folks, this is what we’re up against until we can boot the kenyan out in 2016.

  67. Hue-Man says:

    Welcome at the White House but not the Anglican Church’s Lambeth Conference (in 2008):

    “Indeed, since the conference first met in 1867, he [Robinson] was the only Anglican
    bishop anywhere, except those disgraced for disputed legitimacy, malfeasance or criminality, to be told — in his case, by the Most Rev. Rowan Williams, the archbishop of Canterbury — that there was no seat for him at the Lambeth table.” http://www.cambridgeblog.org/2008/08/bishop-gene-robinson-a-presence-at-lambeth/

    In addition to Ryan’s comments, I would add that the CofE is the state church and the Queen is the Supreme Governor of the Church of England. The church can’t act independently of the government and vice versa when there is an overlap of jurisdiction.

  68. Steve Kellmeyer says:

    I’m waiting for Obama to nominate a homosexual to give the blessing at an Iftar dinner. After all, the Muslims of Libya treated his actively homosexual ambassador so well…

  69. Jim Olson says:

    Why is the White House even sponsoring an Easter Breakfast? Separation of Church and State? Come on!

  70. Mike_in_the_Tundra says:

    It happened this morning.

  71. Indigo says:

    A bishop is a bishop is a bishop. It’s nice that he invited a gay one to offer a prayer but all things being equal, separation of church and state is on weak ground with these schmooze-n-pray breakfasts. That practice is not to my taste, so to speak.

  72. markofthebeasts says:

    When I was young and struggling with my identity, I had a wonderful message of concern and support from Mr. Robinson. I’ll never forget that.

  73. Elijah Shalis says:

    I am proud of President Obama and Bishop Robinson. The Queen is the head of the Anglican faith and the Defender of the Faith and she assented to gay marriage being legal in England. Bishop Welby should follow in her example.

  74. Ryan says:

    My impression is that the Church of England places a high priority on keeping the Anglican Communion together. The consequence is that anything liberal enough to make the Church of Nigeria threaten to leave is too much. The Episcopal Church has to worry about what the Church of Nigeria will tolerate the Church of England tolerating, which is a more liberal standard.

  75. Rick Roberts says:

    Bwahaha! Somebody get a BC powder for the fundies.

  76. Tor says:

    Go Mr. President!! I hope the bishop accepts. Has Rick Warren been invited? Any other fundies?

  77. FLL says:

    Why is the Church of England so far behind the Episcopal Church in America? I hope that the leadership the Episcopal Church is showing can exert some influence on the Church of England. I’m secular, but if there are Christian denominations that support the current progress of civil rights, all well and good.

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