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    HOMOSEXUALITY

    The average age of a homosexual man dying with AIDS is 39. The average age of gays dying of all other causes is 41. (The average heterosexual married man lives 75 years.) Only one percent of men who practice homosexual sex lives to be 65 or older. Gay men are three times more likely to have alcohol or drug abuse problems. Homosexuals are 14 times more likely to have had syphilis, and 23 times more likely to contract venereal diseases. 

    From a 1993 report by the Family Research Institute.


    It's out, and it's hot: a discussion guide on sexuality for Lutherans. Released last month, it is sure to spark debate both in and out of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) between now and the next ELCA assembly in 1993. "Human Sexuality and the Christian Faith," a 55 page document produced by the denomination's Division for Church and Society, was designed to prompt dialogue and set the stage for a future ELCA social statement on sex issues. The material urges readers to examine with an open mind different views about marriage, promiscuity, and homosexuality.

    At it's core the document questions biblical passages concerning homosexuality and suggests that scriptural references to same-sex relationships need to be re-interpreted in light of modern theories about sexual orientation. "We must distinguish between moral judgments regarding same-sex activity in biblical times and in our own time," the report states. It differentiates "exploitative" homosexual activity from same-sex relationships" in which there is mutual love and commitment." The document challenges ELCA members to evaluate prejudices against homosexuals, insisting that "what we personally find offensive is not necessarily sinful."

    Members of a 24 person United Methodist Church (UMC) panel could not agree on whether homosexuality is a sin, so the committee's 14,000-word report on the subject was referred to the denomination's national policy-making body, which will convene in Louisville, Ky., in May. The report contains a majority statement, signed by 17 committee members, recommending the removal of an assertion in the church's book of rules that homosexual practice and Christianity are incompatible. A minority report, signed by four members, argues for retaining the current language. The panel agreed that biblical references to sexual practices should not be viewed as binding "just because they are in the Bible." Fierce debate is expected at this year's General Conference because at least 35 of the UMC's 72 regional bodies have approved resolutions calling for preserving the traditional stance.

    Copyright 1992 by Media Management, P.O. Box 21433, Roanoke,VA.


    The oft-reported claims that Americans are promiscuous and that 10 percent are exclusively homosexual are false, according to a new University of Chicago study. Sociologist Tom W. Smith of the University of Chicago National Opinion Research Corporation (NORC) says his study clearly shows the vast majority of Americans are heterosexual and unlikely to engage in behavior that would put them at risk for AIDS. The study shows 93 percent of the population has been exclusively heterosexual since the age of 18. Five to 6 percent consider themselves bisexual. And only 1 percent are exclusively homosexual. Smith also found that only 6.8 percent of the population engaged in sexual activity of any kind that would put them at risk of AIDS. 

    Citizen, Vol. 4, No. 4, April 1990, p. 5.