Thursday, December 13, 2007

REPORT FROM THE ROYAL COLLEGE OF PSYCHIATRISTS IN THE UNITED KINGDOM

My friend, Bishop Leland Somers just sent out this email containing a report that deserves to be read by every thinking person, by every Gay person, and by everyone who claims to be a Christian.
December 12, 2007

Dear Friends,

From time to time a report comes across my desk that is so important that I want to share it with my readers. That is the case with this report from the Royal College of Psychiatrists in the United Kingdom. It is not that their thought is new, it is that they have undertaken to report it systematically and with the full scholarship and authority of their offices. They have also included a bibliography, which is attached.

When a prejudice is being debated there is a necessity for both sides of the debate to possess facts not just opinions. That is what is so often missing when religious people debate homosexuality. This report was issued because of the raging argument and dislocation going on in my church and in many others about homosexuality. The time has come for people to realize that pious homophobia is not a substitute for
truth. The time has also come for Church leaders at every level to be confronted by competent scholarship, and for weak and fearful bishops, who believe that unity in ignorance is a legitimate goal for the Christian Church, to be told that it is not.

I commend this report to your study and hope that you will help to distribute it widely. For any part of the Christian Church to break apart over the use of outdated and thoroughly discredited ideas about homosexuality is a tragedy. For any part of the Christian Church to be as woefully uninformed on this subject as so many ecclesiastical leaders seem to be is a sign of incompetent leadership.

John Shelby Spong


Royal College of Psychiatrists
Submission to the Church of England's Listening Exercise on Human Sexuality

This report is prepared by a Special Interest Group in the Royal College of Psychiatrists. We have limited our comments to areas that pertain to the origins of sexuality and the psychological and social well being of lesbian, gay and bisexual people (LGB), which we believe will inform the Church of England's listening exercise.

Introduction

The Royal College of Psychiatrists holds the view that LGB people should be regarded as valued members of society who have exactly similar rights and responsibilities as all other citizens. This includes equal access to health care, the rights and responsibilities involved in a civil partnership, the rights and responsibilities
involved in procreating and bringing up children, freedom to practice a religion as a lay person or religious leader, freedom from harassment or discrimination in any sphere and a right to protection from therapies that are potentially damaging, particularly those that purport to change sexual orientation.

We shall address a number of issues that arise from our expertise in this area with the aim of informing the debate within the Church of England about homosexual people. These concern the history of the relationship between psychiatry and LGB people, determinants of sexual orientation, the mental health and well being of LGB people, their access to psychotherapy and the kinds of psychotherapy that can
be harmful.

"This report is prepared by a Special Interest Group in the Royal College of Psychiatrists. We have limited our comments to areas that pertain to the origins of sexuality and the psychological and social well being of lesbian, gay and bisexual people (LGB), which we believe will inform the Church of England's listening exercise.

Introduction

"The Royal College of Psychiatrists holds the view that LGB people should be regarded as valued members of society who have exactly similar rights and responsibilities as all other citizens. This includes equal access to health care, the rights and responsibilities involved in a civil partnership, the rights and responsibilities involved in procreating and bringing up children, freedom to practice a religion as a lay person or religious leader, freedom from harassment or discrimination in any sphere and a right to protection from therapies that are potentially damaging, particularly those that purport to change sexual orientation.

"We shall address a number of issues that arise from our expertise in this area with the aim of informing the debate within the Church of England about homosexual people. These concern the history of the relationship between psychiatry and LGB people, determinants of sexual orientation, the mental health and well being of LGB people, their access to psychotherapy and the kinds of psychotherapy that can be harmful."

[Submission to the Church of England's Listening Exercise on Human Sexuality. For the full report, see here.]

[After reading the above email and report, please read this interview regarding the destructiveness of the "ex-gay" industry."]

1 comment:

Fannie said...

Thank you for blogging about this and subsequently bringing it to my attention.