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Nativity scene featuring Mary in drag upsets Amsterdam Christians

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  1. It is worth pointing out that outside the Randstad (Amsterdam, the Hague, Utrecht etc), the Netherlands is not so tolerant and liberal. There are a lot of ultra-orthodox Calvinist Christians, in a Bibel Belt running diagonally from Zeeland (South West) through places like Gouda and into Flevoland. This sizeable minority (700,000 people) make the most noise. Life for them totally revolves around the church. The extent of fanaticism is such that there are tens of thousands of people who will not immunize their children against diseases like polio, mumps, measles etc. Creationism is taught in schools. These are the people who are making the fuss. Within these small towns, life is extremely difficult for gay people. Organisations like RefoAnders – an organisatin for gay people promoting celibacy and living according biblical teaching, get a high profile in the community. (there are actually other organisations too for gay people that have a more accepting message).

    It’s especially RefoAnders that made all the fuss, claiming to be ‘persecuted’. Really, the message to people like them is, if you don’t like it, stay away.

  2. Har Davids 22 Dec 2008, 9:30pm

    Yep, we have our own bible-belt in Holland and these people vote to get their Taliban light into every office availabe. Too bad a lot of other people can’t be bothered to take part in the democratic process; it they did, these fundis would be a little side-show.

  3. Mary in drag – yes but IS IT ART EDDY ??
    Joseph in leather pants – mary in drag – we still have no proof how this child came up do we ???

    There are lots of Mary’s that just dont know how they got pregnant and they did not become saint !!!

    Mary Christmas to all

  4. It takes so little to upset christians these days, doesn’t it? One could be forgiven for thinking they’re all going through the menopause…

  5. People seem to believe that the Netherlands is, overall, a liberal country. I’m not sure that it is. The Netherlands I know is liberal in only a few areas: Amsterdam, up through Noord Holland to Den Helder. Outside these areas, a particularly stern form of Calvanism is part of their collective subconscious. It’s a strange country.

  6. Simon Murphy 23 Dec 2008, 12:31pm

    Yet more evidence of christian stupidity. The standard response to any religious outrage about homosexuality should always be ‘You are entitled to believe whatever you want. But you are not entitled to prevent people from re-enacting fictional stories in any way they want to. Religions needs to stop limiting people’s freedom of expression’

  7. So those lovely Christians are not offended that the “Holy Family” is and has been represented as white for centuries, to fit with the audience but when other people are trying to implement the concept of acculturation so beloved of the Catholic, then, it’s not possible.

    Another proof of Christian hypocricy (if we needed one, that is)!

    1. I was going to point out the whole white jesus thing too! :D

  8. Such a shame to hear about the fundies in the Netherlands, we had a great time when we stayed in Amsterdam last.

  9. This was a very tacky, disrespectful thing to do. As a gay man I want to be respected, one way I earn my respect is respecting other peoples beliefs. Making a mockery of other peoples beliefs, especially religious beliefs is just wrong. I my not agree with the religious right, but I would never publicly insult them in this way. Shame on them. Shame, Shame, Shame!

  10. I’m with you Jay. This is a silly attempt to provoke. I cannot imagine why you would take money from an authority, and then wittingly flout convention. It is too silly, and is the sort of action which generates disquiet, even bigotry in the wider community. I don’t want to be tared with the same brush, and cannot help but conclude, some member of what is referred to as the “gay community”, are their own worst enemies. This is vapid, publicity-seeking, irresponible – and dare I say – disrespectful, behaviour, which deserves to be condemned – by everyone.

  11. Cate, Qld, Aus 24 Dec 2008, 3:44am

    “By portraying Joseph and Mary as homosexuals, a twisted human fantasy is being added to the history of the Bible,” said Christians for Truth. I would strongly suggest that the bible itself is a twisted, man made up, fantasy.

  12. Two years ago my local church St Andrews on the Terrace in Wellington New Zealand – a Presbyterian church – had a nativity scene featuring 3 drag queens instead of wise men, and a black baby Jesus, and Mary in jeans but with a tree sprouting from her body to represent Gaia. The congregation were mostly very happy about the modern touches. They’re also bery supportive of their happily partnered lesbian Minister.
    See http://www.standrews.org.nz/

  13. Simon Murphy 24 Dec 2008, 12:03pm

    Jay – why would you want to show respect to a belief system that throughout history has hated, disrespected and abused women and gay people. These religious groups have not earned any respect. Their vile doctrines deserve nothing better than ridicule and disrespect. And as I said already I regard the bible to be a work of fiction no more valid than Jackie Collins. Why shouldn’t people be free to interpret a work of fiction in any way they see fit? Who cares what the christians think. They only deserve the respect they themselves show to others. And they hate women and gays.

    1. And who exactly are ”The Christians” that you are referring too? My grandmother on my fathers side is a Catholic, and I can assure you she has never shown hatred towards, nor disrespected or abused Women or Homosexuals/Bisexuals…

      My grandparents on my mothers side are both Mormon, and again have neither shown hatred, abuse or disrespect to Women or Homosexuals/Bisexuals. I can assure you of their dedication to gay rights, and my partner and I enjoyed christmas dinner with them (and the rest of my family) just last week.

      A very very good friend of mine happens to be Gay and a Christian. And he certainly has not shown disrespect, abuse or hatred towards gay people, nore women…

      Again, I ask you who these ”The Christians” are, because it would seem to me that you are lumping them all into one massive group, in much the same way homosexuals/bisexuals have always been lumped together as a deplorable sector of soceity by the biggoted. Is that what you’re doing? Really?

  14. Hey Simon Murphy, you say, ” Christians….hate women and gays.”
    You may be right that some do so…but don’t follow human actions even when they’re said by so-called Christians –follow Jesus Christ and you’ll be much happier in this life.

    Nowhere did Jesus ever say he hated women or gays…and that’s who
    I believe in and I follow His principles not some organized religious system, who may be right or wrong. You should study the
    Bible rather than make statements that are taken from non-Biblical
    historical facts. Of course a heathen academic approach will only
    give you one point of view — you do know there is another point of view that has much historical and archeological support. But
    you have to give it serious study before you ignore or reject it
    entirely.

    God is a God of love (1 Corinthians 13:11, 1 John 4:7-8), but the love that God has for us is opposed to evil. Evil negates God’s love. To say that God only loves necessarily leads to the conclusion that everything is permissible to Him. This is just not so. God hates evil. That makes His love very special

    Proverbs 6:16-19 “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: {17} A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, {18} An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, {19} A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”
    Amos 5:15 Hate evil, love good
    Malachi 2: 15 For I hate divorce, says the Lord
    Romans 9:13 Just as it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Easu I hated.
    Amos 5:21 I hate, I reject your festivals, Nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies

    61% Say Life in U.S. Would Be Better if More Lived as Christians
    With the Christmas season upon us, 61% of adults nationwide say life in the United States would be better if more Americans lived as Christians.

    Even if many of them don’t follow Biblical principles, they do
    have an underlying belief that the New Testament has sound
    principles that would make the world better if followed more.

  15. Funny, isn’t it. If it wasn’t for the Roman Army of occupation most of Europe would never have heard of this crank religion. It was ONLY by the use of brute force, death and torture that this “loving” religion ever came to have so much power over us. All it took was one twat of an Emperor to swallow this old guff and look what it led to.

  16. Hey wossname:

    You said, ” It was ONLY by the use of brute force, death and torture that this “loving” religion ever came to have so much power over us.”

    Have you gone back in history to see how much the Jews were subject to “brute force, death and torture” that
    gave these people the will to fight againt huge odds
    so they could indeed continue this “loving” religion that
    you hate so much?

    Tell me, where would we be without this “loving religion?”
    Give me your view of how history would have turned out without
    this religion.

  17. Well, Hank, I’m not too sure of what you’re asking, to be honest. How can I say what the world would have been like? I do know that in the first Roman invasion of England, the soldiers adopted the gods of the natives, left a few of their own and after a while, buggered off back to Italy. Things were a little bit different when they did the return trip…

    I can only surmise that without religion, people would have got on with their own lives, sure, with the occasional war, we are human, after all. There’s all that territorial stuff you chaps are so keen on but I’m pretty sure Europe would have been a much nicer place without the Spanish Inquisition, much, much nicer in South America for the natives. Even much nicer in the British Isles, without all the burning and torture of folk who were this or that religion, not just the Pagans who were practising a religion that had existed a thousand years or more before the likes of islam or christianity muddied the waters. But with those who were persecuted just on the decision of a protestant or catholic head of state, nobly aided by the relevant clerics of the time of course.

    Let’s face it, in all the wars this world has seen, on whatever continent, religion has been a dominant factor, whether it was by actively urging the people to take part in it for the greater glory, or by saying nothing, like the pope in second world war Rome. Even now, in recent history, as in Northern Ireland, religion has played a dominant factor, one side saying nothing unless it has to and the other espousing the use of force, whereas if both had come together, and actively and roundly condemned the war, which claimed more lives than the events of 11 September, that war would have ended much much sooner than it did.

    We’re now at war with two Islamic countries, granted, Iraq was remarkably non-spiritual until it became clear that Saddam Hussein’s future was starting to look a bit bleak. Then he found religion big time! Look what happened there. In Afghanistan, our troops are fighting an ideology, one that’s foreign to the christian world, we pour troops and weapons into the area, our troops die needlessly yet not too far away on the coast of the Mediterranean, just across the water from Europe there is another religious war, where victims of the last great war are busy, even now, making victims out of people who do not share their views or beliefs. And you ask me what I think the world would have been like without religion? I think that’s something you and every other believer of whatever religion, should be asking themselves.

    Oh, and let’s not get into the debate of where we would be technologically if the Roman church had actually managed to suppress the printing of books. That’s a future that’s altogether too bleak to contemplate.

    God bless Johannes Gutenberg, eh?

  18. Well, Hank, I’m not too sure of what you’re asking, to be honest. How can I say what the world would have been like? I do know that in the first Roman invasion of England, the soldiers adopted the gods of the natives, left a few of their own and after a while, buggered off back to Italy. Things were a little bit different when they did the return trip…

    I can only surmise that without religion, people would have got on with their own lives, sure, with the occasional war, we are human, after all. There’s all that territorial stuff you chaps are so keen on but I’m pretty sure Europe would have been a much nicer place without the Spanish Inquisition, much, much nicer in South America for the natives. Even much nicer in the British Isles, without all the burning and torture of folk who were this or that religion, not just the Pagans who were practising a religion that had existed a thousand years or more before the likes of islam or christianity muddied the waters. But with those who were persecuted just on the decision of a protestant or catholic head of state, nobly aided by the relevant clerics of the time of course.

    Let’s face it, in all the wars this world has seen, on whatever continent, religion has been a dominant factor, whether it was by actively urging the people to take part in it for the greater glory, or by saying nothing, like the pope in second world war Rome. Even now, in recent history, as in Northern Ireland, religion has played a dominant factor, one side saying nothing unless it has to and the other espousing the use of force, whereas if both had come together, and actively and roundly condemned the war, which claimed more lives than the events of 11 September, that war would have ended much much sooner than it did.

    We’re now at war with two Islamic countries, granted, Iraq was remarkably non-spiritual until it became clear that Saddam Hussein’s future was starting to look a bit bleak. Then he found religion big time! Look what happened there. In Afghanistan, our troops are fighting an ideology, one that’s foreign to the christian world, we pour troops and weapons into the area, our troops die needlessly yet not too far away on the coast of the Mediterranean, just across the water from Europe there is another religious war, where victims of the last great war are busy, even now, making victims out of people who do not share their views or beliefs. And you ask me what I think the world would have been like without religion? I think that’s something you and every other believer of whatever religion, should be asking themselves.

    Oh, and let’s not get into the debate of where we would be technologically if the Roman church had actually managed to suppress the printing of books. That’s a world that’s altogether too bleak to contemplate.

    God bless Johannes Gutenberg, eh?

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