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Is Crystal Cathedral’s sex covenant anti-gay?

March 17, 2011 |  9:39 am

Talk back LAThe Crystal Cathedral has asked choir members to sign a controversial "covenant" stating that God intends sex to be between married heterosexuals.

That covenant has angered some current and former choir members who have viewed the document as "anti-gay," though church officials told Times reporter Nicole Santa Cruz that "is not the full intent" of the document.

"It's anyone who has a promiscuous lifestyle," church spokesman John Charles said.

"Crystal Cathedral ministries believes that it is important to teach and model the biblical view," reads the paragraph in the Crystal Cathedral Worship Choir and Worship Team Covenant. "I understand that Crystal Cathedral Ministries teaches that sexual intimacy is intended by God to only be within the bonds of marriage, between one man and one woman."

Document: Read the covenant here.

Senior Pastor Sheila Schuller offered a "sincere" apology Tuesday and noted that the church is "grappling with the challenge of reconciling love and adherence to God's word, even those passages that challenge us." But her father, church founder Robert H. Schuller, told the Orange County Register, which first reported the covenant, that he disagrees with the document because it goes against the principles upon which his church was built.

"I have a reputation worldwide of being tolerant of all people and their views," the senior Schuller said. "I'm too well-educated to criticize a certain religion or group of people for what they believe in. It's called freedom."

What do you think of the church's covenant? Should choir members be asked to sign it? What are your views of Crystal Cathedral, which has filed for bankruptcy and has come under recent criticism for giving hefty payouts and tax allowances for Schuller relatives and church insiders?