Memphis pastor criticized for denying lesbian leadership role

The Memphis Commercial Appeal is reporting on a local controversy against Bellevue Baptist Church Pastor Steve Gaines who refused to allow a lesbian to lead the church’s softball team. In the two minute video, Gaines explains to the congregation his decision but has refused to get into public debate about the situation.

First story in the CA
Second story in the CA

What do you think, was the pastor right or wrong to deny the lesbian a leadership role? He seemed to frame it in that context while saying that anyone is welcome to attend the church, but not in positions where their influence is seen as being approved of by the church.


10 thoughts on “Memphis pastor criticized for denying lesbian leadership role

  1. I believe the pastor was totally correct. He articulated it well. Everyone is a sinner- players and coaches alike- but not everyone is qualified to lead in a church setting. I would have done the same, said the same and I am glad he stood his ground.

  2. “He seemed to frame it in that context while saying that anyone is welcome to attend the church, but not in positions where their influence is seen as being approved of by the church.”

    Bingo! Someone has rightly divided the Word of God.

  3. It is about time that someone with courage stood up against what was clearly wrong. Good move Gaines…..

  4. Let the church say AMEN!!! Pastor Gaines did a wonderful job explaining his decision (God’s decision). Put this man on the prayer list, he took a stand against the enemy. And I hope this young lady will let it go, she can coach other teams.

  5. “And I hope this young lady will let it go, she can coach other teams.”

    Lady D, there’s a strong possibility that she won’t let it go, for the devil is relentless and we know that he works through individuals in order to attack God and His people. It wouldn’t be the surprise of the century if a lawsuit is in the works, if it’s legal to do so.
    But for her sake and everyone else’s, I do hope that she holds no bitterness and moves on.

    But here again, another reason why I advocate for the gathering of Christians in one anothers’ homes. Who can then dictate how you place someone in leadership inside of your home, regardless of what position it is?

    I think Pastor Foster wrote some time ago about how leaders in the Church would eventually become under attack, and congregations sued, for “job” discrimination against gay individuals.
    We’re seeing baskets full of fruit of that now.

  6. Good decision by this pastor. It is akin to what happened recently when I wrote on this blog about Bishop Bruce Ough of the
    West Ohio Methodist District (out of Maumee, Ohio) who allowed
    a confessing and professing homosexual to become its chief financial officer.
    Part of the reasoning was that he was in a committed relationship (over twenty years) and his financial acumen was sorely needed by the district and get this…the church disciplines only speak to clergy not being in a homosexual relationship…not non clergy people.
    So, if you are a big time sinner and want a leadership position in the Methodist organization but are not clergy, it is OK with Bishop Bruce Ough.
    This Bishop was the mover and shaker behind this person getting elected at the recent Lakeside, Ohio conference.
    You would think that a Bishop would have witnessed to him about his sin and his sins keeping him out of the Kingdom of God, but apparently, being in a open and “committed” homosexual relationship did not deter the Bishop from his enthusiatic endorsement of this person.
    So much for the Bishop’s Bible exegesis and discernment. That is the state of Methodism in NW Ohio.
    NOw, when other gays come to this part of Ohio and see what is what, they will demand parity with this chief financial officer and what will the Bishop say about those demands?
    Nothing. He has allowed the precedent and some other gay person who is denied a non clergy job will protest and sue stating equal protection!
    Thanks a lot Bishop.

  7. If you dare, before praising and thanking G-d for Steve Gaines, the Bellevue Baptist Church pastor, you’d research how hypocritical Steve Gaines really is:

    or when he laughs at the lifestyle here

    or when he covets a mans voice here

    and that’s just the beginning.

  8. Geek several things are going on with this.

    The first link you posted, the woman seems to be comparing homosexuality and child molestation. It seems she thinks that because homosexuals are “authentic and honest” they are better than child molesters. My position is all sin is equally offensive and dangerous.

    She said:
    “Isn’t it strange how so many so-called Christians, and especially Baptists, seem so much more concerned about a person who acknowledges homosexuality than they do about clergy-child-molesters who actually hurt kids? The problem for Baptists is that many homosexual people are actually authentic and honest about themselves.”

    I dont agree with that. Its not an either/or situation when it comes to sin.

    Perhaps Pastor Gaines learned from his error with the molestor and decided it wasnt worth it to try and shield another situation to his detriment.

    My praise for him was for that. Not allowing the self confessed sexually immoral to have any leadership or influence. I dont support his allowing the man who molested the child to stay in leadership in any context, but that also doesnt cancel out his responsibility to act biblically in this situation.

    The only way it could be 100% hypocritical is it there were another cases of child molestation or sexual immorality and Gaines didnt act biblically. But unless there’s something Im missing, its just these two situations. And my comments are not to minimize the severity of either but simply to say he did wrong on the first, but he was right to do right on the second.

    On the other stuff, youre creating a mountain out of a molehill so let’s stick to the issue at hand.

  9. Pastor Gaines is 100% on with this. leadership does influence. And The Church CANNOT & SHOULD NOT in Good Conscious Go with what God does NOT stand for. Kudos to you Pastor!!

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