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Spirituality and Regilion

It may seem as if there is one religious view — a negative one — about the LGBTQ community because socially conservative political and religious organizations have dominated public discussion on this issue. There is no one religious stance on the issue. There are communities of faith who are quietly contemplating the challenges faced by the LGBTQ population and working within their communities to ensure the human integrity and spiritual dignity of LGBTQ people.


The following is a list of the major denominations in the United States and their current positions. It should be noted that there are dissenting views within each religion and among leaders within the same denomination.


National/ International Information

The information that follows is from "Stances of Faith on LGBTQ Issues" from the Human Rights Campaign and specific denomination and/or congregation websites.

Permits openly queer people to join and participate fully in the church. The church does not consider LGBTQ orientation to be wrong because it is not a choice. Teaches that any sexual activity outside marriage is wrong — LGBTQ people are expected to remain celibate for life. Condemns prejudice and discrimination against LGBTQ people as sinful and supports the basic human rights of all LGBTQ people. Regarding ordination, many men’s religious orders and some bishops often make their own decisions regarding gay men as candidates for the seminary and priesthood.

Considers homosexuality a sin, but officially lets openly gay people join. There are differing views between the American Baptists and Southern Baptists though, and individual churches are autonomous. The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) even goes so far as to express antipathy not only for gay and lesbian people but also for any individual or institution that acknowledges, accepts, or supports them. The SBC insists that gay and lesbian people remain celibate, or, more commonly, change their orientation through prayer and controversial reparative techniques (which have been judged unproven and potentially harmful by several professional associations).

Permits openly LGBTQ people to join and does not officially consider homosexuality a sin, but homosexual activity is considered incompatible with Christian teaching and therefore a sin. The church supports basic human rights and civil liberties for all LGBTQ people. Ministers are forbidden from blessing same-gender unions, although a group of Methodist ministers have declared that they will perform same-gender unions. Non-celibate gay and lesbian people may not be ordained as ministers.

Has no official judgment about the morality of gay and lesbian sexual activity.

The church does not approve of ministers’ blessing gay and lesbian unions as an official action of the church, but there is no policy for disciplining a minister who does so. The church recognizes marriage as “between a man and a woman,” but acknowledges that its members hold various convictions about lifelong, monogamous, same-gender relationships. Gay and lesbian people may be ordained as clergy. Opposes all forms of verbal or physical harassment and assault based on sexual orientation. It supports legislation and policies to protect civil rights and to prohibit discrimination in housing, employment, and public services. It has called upon congregations and members to welcome, care for, and support same-gender couples and their families and to advocate for their legal protection.

Distinguishes between same-sex attraction and homosexual behavior. Identifying as LGB or experiencing same-sex attraction is not a sin and does not prohibit one from participating in the Church, holding callings, or attending the temple. The church recommends chastity for gay and lesbian people, as sex is reserved for married couples and the church only recognizes marriage between one man and one woman. The church is known to refer to married same-sex couples as “apostates” and states that the children of married same-sex couples are blocked from baptism until they turn 18. In order to receive the blessing of Christ, children must “specifically [disavow] the practice of same-gender cohabitation and marriage. Has historically encouraged “reparative therapy” for LGBTQ people, but due to backlash, all mention of this has been removed from official websites.

Historically has not recognized a gay or lesbian orientation and rejected sexual relations between gay and lesbian people as sinful and punishable by death. In more recent years, some rabbis have moved to becoming more welcoming of LGBTQ people. No Orthodox body approves of any religious ceremony for same-sex weddings. Acceptance at Orthodox seminaries and ordination as an Orthodox rabbi is denied to individuals who are openly LGBTQ, as they are to women. There are, to date, only a few openly gay Orthodox rabbis all of whom revealed their sexual orientation only after ordination. In general, the Orthodox Jewish community supports protections against the discrimination of LGBTQ people in the workplace, as long as religious policies are not in jeopardy.

LGBTQ Conservative Jews will encounter a wide range of experiences at Conservative institutions. Some are welcoming and affirming, ordaining LGBTQ rabbis and celebrating same-sex marriages. Others are not. As a denomination, however, Conservative Judaism has taken a firm and public stance for inclusion. Does not consider a gay or lesbian orientation sinful. Openly welcomes gay and lesbian members and supports nondiscrimination policies against gay and lesbian people in civil society. Supports the blessing of gay and lesbian unions, accepts openly LGBTQ seminary students, and condones the ordination of LGBTQ rabbis.

Does not consider a gay or lesbian orientation sinful.  Openly welcomes LGBT members and supports nondiscrimination policies against LGBT people. They support the rights of LGBT people to be married and accept openly LGBT seminary students. They also permit rabbis to bless LGBT couples. Most Reform rabbis will gladly officiate at same-sex marriage ceremonies.

Does not consider a gay or lesbian orientation sinful.  Openly welcomes LGBT members and supports nondiscrimination policies against LGBT people. They support the rights of LGBT people to be married and accept openly LGBT seminary students. They also permit rabbis to bless LGBT couples. Recognizes and celebrates same-sex marriages and considers them the equivalent of heterosexual marriages.

Welcomes gay and lesbian people and condemns those who would judge or mistreat them. The church expresses opposition to any federal, state, and local legislation that discriminates against persons on the basis of sexual orientation. The denomination allows the blessing of gay and lesbian unions and allows the ordination of non-celibate gay and lesbian ministers.

Affirmation- United Methodists for LGBTQ Concerns

Affirmation- LGBTQ Mormons

Gay and Lesbian Vaishnava Association- positive information and support to LGBTI Vaishnavas and Hindus, their friends, and other persons

Integrity- A National Association of LGBT Episopalians and their friends

Dignity USA- LGBTQ Catholics

Center for LGBTQ and Gender Studies in Religion and Ministry

Muslim Alliance

Coming Out Muslim

The following list has been identified by our allies as places of worship that are LGBTQ friendly and affirming.  Please let us know if you of others to add to our list! 

OU and the Gender + Equality Center does not endorse any indiviual religious organization.

Cathedral of Hope, OKC
3131 N Pennsylvania Ave
Oklahoma City, OK

Church of the Open Arms, OKC
3131 N. Pennsylvania Ave.
Oklahoma City, OK 73112

Expressions Church, OKC
4010 N. Youngs Blvd
Oklahoma City, OK 73112

First Christian Church of Norman
220 S. Webster
Norman, OK 73069

First Congregational Church of Norman
601 24th Ave., SW
Norman, OK 73069

First Unitarian Church, OKC
600 NW 13th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73103

Memorial Presbyterian Church, Norman
601 24th Ave. SW
Norman, OK 73069

Morning Star, Norman
Senior Citizen Center
329 S. Peters Ave.
Norman, OK 73069

Norman Friends Meeting, Norman
800 Elm Ave.
Norman, OK 73069

St. Stephens United Methodist Church, Norman
1801 W. Brooks St.
Norman, OK 

Temple B'Nai Israel, OKC
4901 N. Pennsylvania
Oklahoma City, OK 73112

West Wind Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Norman
1309 W. Boyd St.
Norman, OK 73069

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