Gay-Friendly Churches and Houses of Worship Growing

This seems so incongruent with all the other news about how religious institutions are not allowing LGBT events and how fundamentalist are behind putting an end to certain LGBT laws.

Nearly half of houses of worship in the United States now allow gay and lesbian members who are in long-term relationships to be members, while close to one in three now let gay and lesbian members hold voluntary leadership posts, according to a new study of more than a thousand American congregations.

The statistics, which represent a sharp uptick in acceptance of gay and lesbians in religious communities, are part of Duke University’s latest National Congregations Study, which was previewed this week and will be released in full early next year.

“Compared to our study in 2006-2007, there’s been a ten percent increase among congregations that say gays and lesbians in committed relationships can be full-fledged members,” said Mark Chaves a professor of sociology at Duke University who led the study. “Last time we asked these questions, it was 38 percent of congregations that let gays and lesbians be full members.”

In a similar pattern, the number of congregations that allow gay and lesbian members in long-term relationships to hold voluntary leadership positions has also increased from the 19 percentage that held the such a position in Chaves’ 2006-2007 study.

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