Skip to comments.World Vision Reverses Decision on Gay Married Employees: 'We Made a Mistake'
Posted on 03/26/2014 3:41:00 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
After days of backlash from Evangelicals, World Vision, an international nonprofit ministry, has reversed its decision to allow those in same-sex marriages to be employed.
"Today, the World Vision U.S. board publicly reversed its recent decision to change our national employment conduct policy," the Christian humanitarian organization said in a letter to supporters Wednesday. "The board acknowledged they made a mistake and chose to revert to our longstanding conduct policy requiring sexual abstinence for all single employees and faithfulness within the Biblical covenant of marriage between a man and a woman."
World Vision has come under heavy criticism since it made public on Monday its policy change. In a letter to its employees that was shared with The Christian Post on Monday, World Vision President Richard Stearns announced that while the organization is not endorsing same-sex marriage, it recognizes that its staff is comprised of believers from more than 50 denominations, some of which have sanctioned same-sex marriage. Thus, its board has decided to defer the issue to local churches, in its effort to "treat all of our employees equally."
Stearns' letter regarding World Vision's change in employee practices notes that the board spent several years praying for discernment about their decision after having witnessed the debate over same-sex marriage "tear apart the Body of Christ," in families, churches, Christian universities and denominations.
"The board and I wanted to prevent this divisive issue from tearing World Vision apart and potentially crippling our ability to accomplish our vital kingdom mission of loving and serving the poorest of the poor in the name of Christ," he stated.
The policy change drew criticism from such prominent Evangelicals as evangelist Franklin Graham and George Wood of the Assemblies of God.
"My dear friend, Bob Pierce, the founder of World Vision and Samaritan's Purse, would be heartbroken," said Graham, president and CEO of Samaritan's Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. "He was an evangelist who believed in the inspired Word of God. World Vision maintains that their decision is based on unifying the church which I find offensive as if supporting sin and sinful behavior can unite the church. From the Old Testament to the New Testament, the Scriptures consistently teach that marriage is between a man and woman and any other marriage relationship is sin."
On Tuesday, the Assemblies of God issued a statement encouraging its churches and individual members to "gradually shift support away from the U.S. branch of World Vision to Assemblies of God World Missions, and other Pentecostal and evangelical charities that maintain biblical standards of sexual morality."
Denouncing World Vision's decision to allow people who are in a legal same-sex marriages to be employed at the nonprofit organization, Wood, general superintendent of the Assemblies of God, said that World Vision's policy change "cannot be construed as anything but an endorsement of same-sex marriage."
"Far from promoting Christian unity, the policy change enlists World Vision on the liberal Protestant side of the same-sex marriage debate as opposed to that of Pentecostal and Evangelical churches in the U.S., not to mention Pentecostal and Evangelical churches worldwide," said Wood, who represents a fellowship of more than 3 million members.
The Christian Post continues to reach out to World Vision for comment.
Today, the World Vision U.S. board publicly reversed its recent decision to change our national employment conduct policy. The board acknowledged they made a mistake and chose to revert to our longstanding conduct policy requiring sexual abstinence for all single employees and faithfulness within the Biblical covenant of marriage between a man and a woman.
We are writing to you our trusted partners and Christian leaders who have come to us in the spirit of Matthew 18 to express your concern in love and conviction. You share our desire to come together in the Body of Christ around our mission to serve the poorest of the poor. We have listened to you and want to say thank you and to humbly ask for your forgiveness.
In our board's effort to unite around the church's shared mission to serve the poor in the name of Christ, we failed to be consistent with World Vision U.S.'s commitment to the traditional understanding of Biblical marriage and our own Statement of Faith, which says, " We believe the Bible to be the inspired, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God. " And we also failed to seek enough counsel from our own Christian partners. As a result, we made a change to our conduct policy that was not consistent with our Statement of Faith and our commitment to the sanctity of marriage.
We are brokenhearted over the pain and confusion we have caused many of our friends, who saw this decision as a reversal of our strong commitment to Biblical authority. We ask that you understand that this was never the board's intent. We are asking for your continued support. We commit to you that we will continue to listen to the wise counsel of Christian brothers and sisters, and we will reach out to key partners in the weeks ahead.
While World Vision U.S. stands firmly on the biblical view of marriage, we strongly affirm that all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, are created by God and are to be loved and treated with dignity and respect.
Please know that World Vision continues to serve all people in our ministry around the world. We pray that you will continue to join with us in our mission to be " an international partnership of Christians whose mission is to follow our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in working with the poor and oppressed to promote human transformation, seek justice, and bear witness to the good news of the Kingdom of God ."
Sincerely in Christ,
Richard Stearns, President
Jim Beré, Chairman of the World Vision U.S. Board
IOW, “We never expected donors to revolt!”
They have revealed their heart. I will not forget.
The wise counsel of Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit wouldn't hurt either.
Now no one respects you, and you stand for nothing.
They are done. Time to set up another shell company.
“we’ve never heard of this “Book of Romans” before, and we were appalled by some of the things in it....’” “
Yes, and calling it a "mistake" is the height of deceit and the opposite of repentance. Mistakes are honest misjudgements based on imperfect information available. This is just a shirking of responsibility. There was open revolt against God's character, and that requires real repentance.
What I do not understand is that they said the "overwhelming majority" of the Board approved the sodomite "marriage" lie.
What happened, they suddenly got convinced that the Bible is more accurate than pagan culture we're supposed to be REFORMING into the image of Christ????
I don’t think people are going to forget that these people TOTALLLY and COMPLETELY trashed the Word of God - to accommodate the downward spiral of secular society!
Reading through all the comments here on FR, it looks like the apology ain’t gonna work, lol!
I agree. This only 'might' have worked if they had simultaneously announced that they were firing their President for having made such a grievous error. Fundamentally the leader of a so-called Christian organization either has not read the Bible, or he does not believe it.
But another poster claimed that the Board also originally supported this decision (which they then flip-flopped on the next day -- after hearing how their donors found their statement repulsive)...
So ... stick a fork in them.
I wrote them on behalf of our church benevolence committee.
Man, there must of been a whole lot more than just me writing.
The thing is that they will not be trusted now, and we have already earmarked that money elsewhere.
The just shouldn’t have gone there.
I will forgive them. But I'm not sure I can ever trust them.
Forgiveness is a gift easily given.
Trust is a virtue difficult to earn.
as a retired pastor World Vision acknowledged its true nature when it announced it would be supportive of old testament sodomy. Sorry to hear Worldly Vision forgets that it stands for Gods truth instead it went for the all inclusive garbage, And it may as well change its name too Worldly Vision. Even with the change in policy the damage is done.
“Sincerely in Christ,
Richard Stearns, President”???
He should have his mouth washed out with soap.