Both the Bible and the tradition of the church teach that same-sex sexual activity is sinful. It’s not an unforgivable sin or the worst sin, but it is a sin. Therefore, the church asks those who are tempted to such sin to refrain from it and be chaste. In a similar way the church asks those with no same-sex struggles to refrain from heterosexual sexual activity outside of marriage. Chastity is asked from both and it is believed that God can help a person remain chaste.
So in closing, the Orthodox Church is happy to minister to those struggling with homosexuality. Such ministering goes on pretty much everywhere and in most parishes –our people have the same struggles as everyone else does. We certainly have no hatred against people with this struggle and no interest in “gay bashing.”
We will not turn someone away because of a particular sin they struggle with. They are sinners like the rest of us who need God’s forgiveness and help.
But performing or approving of same-sex marriages? No, we can’t do that. That would be saying that what is a sin isn’t a sin. That would be a lie, so we can’t participate or approve.
May God have mercy on all of us sinners and bring us to repent of our sins and bring us all into his heavenly kingdom.
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