Group releases open letter aimed at introducing alternatives 
to people of color with same sex attractions 

     Atlanta - Asserting that America's black gay and lesbian community needs to come home to God, members of a group of African American former homosexuals today released an national open letter asking black gays to realize their need for God.
    Rev. DL Foster, an Atlanta area pastor who is Founder and President of the group "Powerful Change" said, "Our hearts are broken for so many men and women who like we were, are floundering in a sea of unwanted same sex issues. We wanted them to know that there's hope and a choice to have freedom from a way of life which is wreaking havoc on their community."
   Statistics show that HIV/AIDS, depression, suicide attempts and substance abuse among  gay and lesbian people of color are at a crisis level. Black gay leaders are openly asking all quarters of the black community to help save lives. Citing those reasons and more as an unquestionable need for their help, former homosexuals decided to offer their support to  "gay and lesbian brothers and sisters in the wilderness."

    "The message of Christ was one of truthful compassion. We cannot, with good Christian conscience stand by silently, when we see so many who are hurting and broken." said Foster. "The solution begins by acknowledging that when you are in over your head, you need God's help. In times of trouble, our community has always called on God to deliver us. That's at the core of our message to the black gay and lesbian community."
     Linda Carter of Mobile, AL and a leader in the group said, "Because of our like experiences in dealing with sexuality in context with ethnicity, we felt we could best speak to this crisis. Who could walk away from such a letter of love and support?"
     The letter, entitled "Coming Home: An Open Letter to the Black Gay and Lesbian Community", is being released nationwide to highlight the ministry options available to people of color who choose to change. Featured are books and web resources by black former homosexuals including Gospel Music superstar Donnie McClurkin's book "Eternal Victim, Eternal Victor." Representing a diverse group of former homosexuals, parents of gay children, medical and educational professionals and other concerned Christians, the letter's co-signers insist they are united in their message of hope and redemption. 

    The document also issues a challenge to the black community's most important resource, the church. "We take this opportunity to call on every African American church to stop contributing to the anguish and suffering of sexually confused men and women and begin promoting healing through the ministry of reconciliation.", it says.    
    The Letter was released to symbolically coincide with "Juneteenth", a day of freedom from slavery, which thousands of Black Americans across the country celebrate. Likewise, the co-signers of the letter urge the black gay and lesbian community to escape the maze of confusion on  same gender sexuality and find the peace and security promised by Christ to all those who would come to him.

   Powerful Change is a nonbinding national fellowship of African American-led ministries to the sexually broken. Formed in 2001, it continues to grow as a voice of reason, equality and truth to the sexually dispossessed.  Full text of the Open Letter


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