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Salvation Army Updates Position On Gay Community

Just in time for the holiday bell ringing season (and to ward off a boycott launched by Truth Wins Out), the Salvation Army has updated a particularly nasty association with anti-gay groups that has plagued its reputation for years. 

In a letter penned to TWO's Associate Director Evan Hurst, the Salvation Army's Director of Communications Jennifer Byrd pledges the organization's commitment to the gay community, and announces the scrubbing of ex-gay groups linked to on the charity's website. 

Byrd writes on behalf of the Salvation Army:

We sincerely appreciate you bringing this matter to our attention. As you know, The Salvation Army strives to live out our mission of meeting human need without discrimination. Our doors are always open to anyone who seeks our help, regardless of race, gender, ethnicity or sexual orientation. We simply do not discriminate against the people we serve or the people we hire.

We have removed the page of referrals for sexual addiction centers. Truthfully this was an old page that had been archived but was reposted when we launched our new website last month. We apologize for our oversight and any confusion this may have caused. The Salvation Army does not consider homosexual orientation a sin. Please know that we serve anyone who comes to our doors without discrimination.

While the words are nice and the removal of links to anti-gay groups a tangible sign of progress, we've can't help but remember being in this position before with the Salvation Army. The evangelical church charity has long said that it does not discriminate against sexual orientation, yet it has, on multiple occasions, used its funds to support the criminalization of homosexuality in various countries around the world (head to Bilerico for examples). 

So, we won't hold our breath while this olive branch is extended before us, but we certainly hope that the Salvation Army has finally come around to its senses. 

Comments

They don't believe that sexual orientation is a sin. Actually having a boyfriend and being in love and getting married and having sex and all that other stuff...those are still sins. This is meager progress. Hardly any religious denominations believe sexual orientation is inherently sinful. 

I'll believe it when I see it put into action on the local level for about 10 years. When the local branch no longer turns away same sex families from a food bank, then MAYBE I'll think this is more than just a publicity stunt.

Cheers !

For as many years SA has discriminated against gays, I will wait that same amount of time till I decide to donate.  Seems fair.

The Salvation Army can NEVER say anything about their morals I'll believe. I was born and raised to the age of 16 in this" church" and i can say with all truth that at that age i was told by church leaders that i was no longer welcome in any of their buildings because i had been raped and chosen NOT to abort or give my baby up. After all of that i also came out to my so called church family and was told" homosexuals should be stoned and left for animal food" . Any religious affiliate that can say something like that to a teenager who is already alone and scared can't change what they believe and teach over night. Believe me i lived it.

Have you forgotten when Chick-fil-A was confronted with their nonsense they initially offered an olive branch to us, only to snatch it away and claimed we "misunderstood"? Sorry. For me, as far as the Salvation Army is concerned, the damage has been done.

The Salvation Army is one of the few charitable organizations that gives most (if not all) of the money it collects in its red buckets to people who really are in need, the numbers of which seem to be rising steadily as time passes. If you are not going to put spare change in the bucket as you leave the grocery store, please make sure that you give money to another organization that you know will give the money to people who really need it. The Salvation Army is not out anything if you choose not to donate, but the people who are poor and starving in this country are the ones you hurt by taking umbrage at outdated religious dogma...

I was a member for 34 years.  Grew up in this church.  When I finally made the choice not to lie about who I was,  I was told I couldn't come anymore..until I choose the right path.  Um lying about who you are, isn't that a sin.  If you were in an administrational postion or a minister, it wouldn't take long for them to get you out.  As far as employement goes...they just haven't found that loop hole to get them out or giving you a job.  When all this happened I was more hurt than upset.  But now I am mad.  

I'm really sorry you went thru this also. Where was your Corp at? Mine was in Utah. They'll never change, but those of us who are out and proud know their teachings are hypocritical.

Thank you Ruth.  It was a hard thing to deal with.  I have a nephew that came out at the age of 16 and was treated the same way.  Iam from Marshalltown IA.  

Sadly, anonymous person, my own parents chose to stay with the organization, after i had a.run in at 16 and got pregnant. Was told then that was.God's way of telling me that i couldn't be gay, i was already out by that point, and was told not to come back unless i chose to get rid of my child. So as you can see, homophobia is mixed with all the rest of their practices. Please tell your nephew there are others out here that have lived this might mare, and just maybe someday he'll be able to provide support, or just an ear,to someone who needs to know it'll work out, don't feel badly because the church is still stuck in the stone ages.

Not really interested in any of this BS when the cards are down its money they care about

The other day, I saw them standing there smiling ringing their bell. As they watched me pull out a $50.00 bill out of my wallet and just as I was about to put it in the bucket, I pulled it out and said "Oh that's right, you hate gays, well this is gay money and it will be used for love" and I walked away, and left her with her mouth open.

LOVE IT!!!  Glad I am not the only that has done similar:) .

Very to get hired if you are gay. Better still try to get an administration or ministerial position in the organization while being out about your sexual orientation. I doubt you'd succeed. I'll believe they've changed when I see them hire a gay or lesbian director. 

Interesting how these words are coming in just for the holiday seasons lame. lame lame

yeah a friend in need is a friend indeed ... LOL   bite my ass not spending my money there or donating to them... and I will not miss them when they are gone.

I seem to remember an article where they stated their intention of withdrawing from NYC if they were forced to extend the same benefits to gay couples as to straight spouses. Anyone else remember that? Has that happened, or has it ever been officially renounced?

Had a bellringer sass me after I left the store with my cart full and not contribute. So wanted to tell him what I thought of his orginization but used "my Christian values" and refrained.

I'd have asked if they took food stamps. :-)

They must need our money! Too bad and too late! It seems like they changed their minds when they need money donated!   Should have thought about this a little earlier~! Merry Christmas!!!!

They will not perform or condone gay marriage and only accept people that are non practicing gays (those that abstain totally from sexual relations - after all hate the sin not the sinner right?) so really just another hollow and shallow ruse I am certain. After all money matters sayeth the Lord....

Hmm Funny this comes out just in time for holiday giving and not during the summer. This has bee a known issue for years.  

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