On Thursday, Mar. 7, Minnesota for Marriage will bring together a slate of speakers to urge Minnesota legislators to vote against a marriage equality bill.

One of those speakers will be Imam Abdighani Ali. Ali made headlines in 2010 when he told local Somali Muslims that if they participated in an interfaith meeting with Jews, Hindus, and Christians, they were “infidels,” according to MPR.

Somali journalist Abdiweli Ali described the imam’s statements for Hiraam:

Abdighani’s religious bigotry manifested itself when, during a live call-in Somali show that airs on Minneapolis community channel, he was asked whether it is in accordance with Islamic principles for Somali refugees, as Muslims, to settle in the States through Christian church groups. (see the video below; go to minute 36:22). The mainstream media didn’t carry this part of the story. “It is a grave mistake and unislamic”, he said. He quoted a verse from the Holy Koran to explain the church groups’ motive: [2.120] “And the Jews will not be pleased with you, nor the Christians until you follow their religion.” “Therefore, their purpose is to convert Muslims into their religions”, he added. Abdighani didn’t stop there but continued his religious bigotry. He pronounced, “There can be no friendship between Muslims and the infidels” and cited a couple of other verses from the Holy Koran to substantiate his fatwa: [60.1] “O you who believe! do not take My enemy and your enemy [Christians and Jews] for friends;” [5.51] “O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends.”

It seems Imam Abdighani Ali will not be heeding his own advice when he will speak alongside Christians such as Pastor Sam Crabtree of Bethlehem Baptist Church.

Crabtree recently wrote:

When I donate blood, I am routinely required to complete a questionnaire before they draw the blood. On the questionnaire I am asked if I am “a male who has had sexual contact with another male, even once, since 1977.”

It is not love to endorse a behavior that thus jeopardizes the community’s blood supply. What happens in the privacy of one’s bedroom just might have community impact, and reluctance to endorse certain behaviors is warranted.

That Crabtree would admonish what happens in private should be no surprise. His church advocates ex-gay therapy.

Is there a ministry [at Bethlehem] for those who are struggling with same-sex attraction?

Locally, Bethlehem has had a long standing partnership with Outpost Ministries. Outpost has led ministry groups at Bethlehem several times through the years. You can contact Outpost for current information.

Also, a ministry we became aware of through the Village Church in Dallas that has been helpful to our people is Living Hope Ministries, which offers teaching, retreats, and other services.

Finally, another recommended local resource is Bethlehem member Dave Osborn, who provides excellent Life Coaching for Masculine Identity Development.

Crabtree also has some interesting views on same-sex marriage:

The assumption that there should be no restrictions at all on marriage based on “love” would do away with restrictions on marriages between 6-year-olds, institutionalized mentally handicapped individuals, polygamists, men and dogs who love each other, mothers and sons who love each other, and mercenaries who would “marry” strings of individuals only for purposes of immigration. Wise societies place wise restrictions on marriage, because marriage by its very nature is a responsibility for a limited pool of human beings called to it.

Pastor Roger Thompson of New Hope Church in Burnsville will also speak. His church has its own ex-gay group.

When we embrace Christ’s offer to free, heal and release us, we are on a journey to becoming all we were created to be. New Hope Church is a safe place for families, friends and homosexuals seeking change. We extend encouragement in Christ with healing, love and education for those who struggle with sexual identity and for their loved ones. Our goal is to create a safe place for those seeking Christ’s transforming and healing freedom.

The group is called Released. The church also has a ministry called Outstretched Arms for Outstretched Arms “those struggling with a loved ones homosexual lifestyle.”

Some of the speakers are less controversial about their stance on same-sex marriage. the Rev. Jerry McAfee of New Salem Missionary Baptist Church supports civil unions, a position many Minnesota have taken on the issue.

“I am for the amendment because that is the Bible way,” explains McAfee. “The Bible is clear in its definition on marriage, and I don’t think anyone should try to change that. Does that mean I am against civil unions? No, I am not. I think there are ways men and women can get what they want without changing the institution of marriage,” he told Black Christian News.

Other speakers will include Brian Brown, the leader of National Organization for Marriage, and University of St. Thomas law professor Teresa Collett who has argued against same-sex marriage in court.

Here are the details of the rally:

Gather on steps at 2 p.m. – Rally in Rotunda at 2:30 p.m.

Brian Brown from NOM, Professor Teresa Collett, Pastor Roger Thompson, Rev. Jerry McAfee, Pastor Sam Crabtree, Imam Abdighani Ali and other inspirational speakers will join us!
Minnesotans do not want the legislature to change the LAW for marriage!

They will do so if we do not take a stand!

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