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Post no. 51 Straightening the Queers – Xarabank Style

June 16, 2011

For the life of me I can’t see why this sorry excuse for a blog regularly gets hits from people looking for Pastor Gordon Manche. Following his appearance on Xarabank last Friday (10-06-11) there was a surge in traffic *ahem* around these quarters. Expectedly – given the opening premise.

A little background. Pastor Gordon Manche made the headlines a few weeks ago because the sexual equivalent of a Liquorice Allsorts bag gathered outside his “place of worship”.  Apparently it was being claimed that he was putting queers straight with the help of Christ and three freshly straightened people spoke about their trip through the shirt press, as it were. A few Bibles were wielded in a threatening manner, apparently.

The gay crowd, the bi crowd and some straight people (hence the confectionary allusion in case you missed it) protested vehemently. They said that there was nothing wrong with being queer and people should be left as is… you know the drill. Being gay is not a disease, get your hands off my freedom etc etc.

Such earth-shattering events cannot escape the notice of Xarabank. An “episode” was duly cobbled together, the sheep and wolves (to really get the juices flowing)  locked together in the same pen and the key thrown away. I can’t really remember who was on the panel, but there was definitely Pastor Gordon Manche (pinstripe edition), some straightened queer, the spokesperson (I think) of the Malta Gay Rights Movement and a couple of  busybodies who – if history is anything to go by – had no right being there. There was also one Mario Gerada – from an organisation called Drachma. He spoke some sense too, but he wasn’t on the panel proper. I won’t bother with my take on this – not least because I’ve chucked my 2c worth here.

The battle was fought on “quotations” from the Bible. Pastor Gordon Manche alternately quoting the Bible and shouting Hallelujah and the “other side” quoting other things from the Bible possibly with the intention of “refuting” Pastor Manche’s claims. I must admit I felt sorry for the Pastor. He never stood a chance against such ignorance. He wasn’t the sharpest knife in the drawer on the day, mind you but if ignorance were tangible it would have made treacle look like water in comparison.

The trouble with “quoting the Bible” is interpreting it. Any Tom, Dick or Harry who can read will know that a particular passage can only mean one thing viz. the thing he thinks it means. This is the main difference between the Catholic Church and the rest. Catholics believe that only the Church has the authority to interpret Scripture and this with the help of Tradition (and the Holy Spirit, but let’s not go into that here). This is why the Catholic Church has never splintered off into myriad sects and factions, whereas religions the world over have.

The media have really behaved like bras (molehills and mountains, you know) in this one. That the matter has reached Xarabank level tells me that we are still a long way from ever discussing  issues maturely. We’ve managed to have a whole episode dedicated to a non-issue (OK, except when that Kevin Borg fellow stepped in to tell us that he was sweeping his Swedish sweetheart off her feet some place in Sweden).

The media have really behaved like bras (molehills and mountains, you know) in this one. That the matter has reached Xarabank level tells me that we are still a long way from ever discussing  issues maturely. We’ve managed to have a whole episode dedicated to a non-issue (OK, except when that Kevin Borg fellow stepped in to tell us that he was sweeping his Swedish sweetheart off her feet some place in Sweden).

We’re always looking for “black and white” answers, always trying to establish what is fair and what isn’t, what is right and what is wrong without ever referring to that absolute which gives sense to such notions as good and bad (i.e. God or, if you’re the spiritual sort but not really a Christian, the Unchanging Changer).

For all it’s worth hats off to the Pastor for hanging on and never losing sight of this reference point. I don’t like how he did it, however. Never did and never will – but that’s beside the point.

That’s that for now.

Toodle-oo

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