UPDATE (5:05 p.m.) World Vision Reverses Decision on Employees in Same-Sex Marriages: World Vision released a statement (see below) this afternoon confirming it has reversed its decision to allow its American branch to hire employees in same-sex marriages: “The board acknowledged it made a mistake and chose to revert to our longstanding policy requiring sexual abstinence for all single employees and faithfulness within the Biblical covenant of marriage between one man and one woman. … 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.”
Read the official letter here from World Vision.
I’m reminded that we live in a constantly changing world. We have heroes and villains. There are people who live the motto: Life is not about me or life is all about me. We argue, we value, we fight, we love, we disagree, we find harmony- every day changes.
Yesterday, I read about World Vision’s controversial decision that has today caused a blast through the Christian community. Our family has been World Vision sponsors for years financially supporting two beautiful children living in India and the Middle East. I spent time reading the statements from Richard Stearns and read the additional comments from others on social media. My greatest concern was immediately for the children and orphans around the world who will most likely lose sponsorship from churches and supporters, financial support, and ultimately be the ones to suffer. This breaks my heart. I want to stand united to care for the needs of children. Sponsorship is a commitment to the child, however when the ministry I sponsor makes a monumental decision, it makes it difficult to know what to do. World Vision states: “We are called to serve the neediest people of the earth, to relieve their suffering and to promote the transformation of their condition of life.” We wholeheartedly support that decision. What is the truth?
Today, it feels as though World Vision has robbed the sanctity of marriage and family and robbed the care for orphans and poverty. Now believers and non-believers will question truth… what is right and wrong?
John Piper’s article states: “This is a tragic development for the cause of Christ, because it trivializes perdition — and therefore, the cross — and because it sets a trajectory for the demise of true compassion for the poor.” This means that, without repentance and change, World Vision will go the way of worldliness and weakness. A great superstructure will remain for a season, but the Christian soul will disappear. And who will suffer most? The poor. Therefore, for the sake of Christ and his call to true compassion, World Vision’s decision is tragic. I pray they will repent and turn back to their more faithful roots.”
“Nor is it fair to put the entire spiritual burden on sponsors in this case. Stearns said, “It’s my hope that all of our donors and partners will understand it, and will agree with our exhortation to unite around what unites us… I’m hoping not to lose supporters over the change.” That is intellectually dishonest. At no point does a Christian organization with a predominantly evangelical base make a policy change surrounding gay marriage and truthfully expect it not to offend.” (Jen Hatmaker’s post here.)
I encourage you to pray, pray, pray fervently before you make a decision on sponsoring or withdrawing your sponsorship with World Vision and consider with all your heart the child. My passion grows stronger to encourage you to live out-loud James 1:27. Pray through and seek wisdom and understanding on your decision.
Let me know in the comments what you feel about World Vision’s decision and how you feel it will affect the sponsorship for thousands of children around the world.
“World Vision’s American branch will no longer require its more than 1,100 employees to restrict their sexual activity to marriage between one man and one woman.
Abstinence outside of marriage remains a rule. But a policy change announced Monday [March 24] will now permit gay Christians in legal same-sex marriages to be employed at one of America’s largest Christian charities.
In an exclusive interview, World Vision U.S. president Richard Stearns explained to Christianity Today the rationale behind changing this “condition of employment,” whether financial or legal pressures were involved, and whether other Christian organizations with faith-based hiring rules should follow World Vision’s lead.
Stearns asserts that the “very narrow policy change” should be viewed by others as “symbolic not of compromise but of [Christian] unity.” He even hopes it will inspire unity elsewhere among Christians. Read the rest of the article here...
[Updated] Other Sources:
Jen Hatmaker shares: World Vision, Gay Marriage, and a Different Way Through
Kevin DeYoung, Blogger: The Worldliness in World Vision’s New Hiring Policy
World Vision and Why We Grieve For the Children by blogger, Trevin Wax.
Shawn Groves says this about the difference between World Vision and Compassion International.
Statement of Assemblies of God: General Superintendent George O. Wood Regarding World Vision Recognition of Same-Sex Marriages
World Vision Hiring Homosexuals Ignites Controversy In Christian Community by Inquisitr
Blogger, Kristen Howerton: On World Vision, gay marriage, and taking a stand on the backs of starving children.
These Are Real Kids, You Know: Blogger, Nish Weiseth
Blogger, Rachel Held Evans: Who’s this child sponsorship about, anyway? [Reversal decision update]
(Un)Follow, (Un)Support, (Un)Sponsor: What does our response to World Vision say about our Faith? by Jamie the very worst missionary
Learn more about sponsorship with World Vision click here.