By JR on Monday, June 18, 2012
When homosexuals have done one thousandfth of the good works that the Salvos have done I might listen to them
THE Salvation Army is facing a backlash after its online anti-homosexuality and gay marriage stance sparked a social media boycott campaign.
Gay pop star Darren Hayes - the face of '90s hit machine Savage Garden and a mentor on The Voice - has called for the boycott.
The Salvos responded last night by pointing out they helped Australia's most marginalised and needy, including gay and transgender people.
After spotting the Salvos' online statement on homosexuality, Hayes tweeted to his 60,748 followers: "Important for gay people to know the true position of the Salvation Army when considering who to donate to. Sad." He said asking people to control their sexuality was like asking someone to change their eye colour.
Salvation Army spokesman Major Bruce Harmer said most of Australia's faith-based charities would be excluded from receiving donations if judged purely on Hayes' criteria.
"TSA would suggest a more appropriate measure for people to use is to look at how an organisation treats and deals with members of the community who are marginalised, vulnerable, experiencing disadvantage or oppression," he said. "On that measure, TSA is one of the most compassionate and non-discriminatory in the way it works with people who are marginalised in our community, including many who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender."
He said gay people could be officers of the church if they vowed to be celibate as well as unmarried heterosexuals. Major Harmer said a statement on its website, which described homosexuality as "unacceptable" to God and that it should be "restrained" with willpower, was its current position.