CCFON say that ‘Mr McFarlane had an unblemished record of service for RELATE and was trying to work out a way in which his Christian views could be accommodated.’ That ‘accommodation’ presumably being that he would be allowed not to counsel gay partners. There is a worrying deception in this argument. Being excused undertaking a task that one is employed to provide ‘for reasons of conscience’ perpetuates the belief there are some in this world that are second class, somehow below being fully human or not worthy of the full service that is provided for others. In all these cases it is right to fight for a situation where someone employed to provide a service such as this cannot be the arbiter of who he should provide the service to.
I have to wonder how he has managed in the past to accommodate his ‘religious views’ with counselling couples where adultery was a factor … after all it is specifically included in the Ten Commandments [Seventh Commandment (I think) "Thou shall not commit adultery."] while homosexuality doesn’t even get a passing mention.
Here’s item 4 from CCFON’s atatement of faith:
“Since the fall, the whole of humankind is sinful and guilty, has been cut off from God spiritually and is subject to physical death and is under God’s wrath and condemnation”
As Mr McFarlane presumably shares this conservative Evangelical view with CCFON, I have to wonder exactly what he thought he was doing when he joined Relate to ‘counsel’ the ‘unregenerate’ (ie anyone not an Evangelical Christian)?
Most Evangelicals would consider counselling non-Christians in a secular context a waste of time better spent evangelizing (ie recruiting).
Was he just attempting to use Relate as a vehicle to recruit vulnerable people to his religious point of view?
I have to wonder why Relate were not more thorough in assessing his suitability for the post & his willingness to comply with policy BEFORE employing him?
CCFON is an organisation that wants to turn the UK into a theocracy – laws based on the Bible. They aim to turn back the clock and strip gays of rights, and if they had the chance would recriminalise homosexuality.
There cannot be tolerance for the intolerant, and no place for rights that amount to discrimination of others. Mr McFarlane is not forced to work at Relate – if he cannot do his job properly, then he should do the decent thing and make it available who will.
You should leave your religion at the door – the workplace must be a secular environment.
Jaysus, another “christian” that has an issue doing what he’s paid to do. I can only assume they just don’t want to do a decent days work…
It’s these religious people (Christians and others) who have had their way for years and are at the very root of “promoting prejudice against, not only homosexuals but other groups too”. Now that the tide is turning slightly against their views, which have prevailed largely unchallenged, there is no way that “religious followers” should be allowed to perpetuate “futher bigotry” at the tax payer’s expense.
Drop these christian facists a note condemning their facist behaviour. Their address is email@example.com.
Isn’t it weird that an organisation such as this christian group is trying to use the tools of democracy ie courts and hearings to destrot democracy. These christian groups support the recriminalisation of homosexuality; are virulently anti-abortion and want to use the tools of democracy to impose their extremist beliefs on everyone. Muslim extremism is an issue that we are all aware of from watching the news in Mumbai. I find the christian extremism of groups like CCFON far more disturbing as they are attempting to undermine the legal system so that their bigotted views will be protected in law.
The main issue is one of professionalism; any counsellor should be able to leave their personal feelings and beliefs outside the counselling room and deal with whoever they are being paid to counsel. It’s the same with lawyers; you can’t pick and choose clients, a gay lawyer may have to defend a queerbasher sometimes, or a murderer, whatever. You are paid to be professional about it.
If a counsellor is unable to put his feelings or beliefs aside, he is definitely in the wrong job.
I have sent the Christian “fascist” organisation the comments and invited to respond here. Let’s see if they have the balls.