ADVERTISING
 
Wednesday, August 23   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 
Flecha
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 
 

POLL
LGBT debates in churches
Is the definition of marriage an important enough issue to split a church?



SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Spanish Evangelical Alliance
 

“LGBT law restricts freedom of conscience and freedom of speech”

A petition asking members of the Spanish parliament to stop the draft law reaches 5,000 signatures in 24 hours.

AUTHOR Evangelical Focus BARCELONA 18 JULY 2017 15:49 h GMT+1
Spanish evangelicals are asking Members of Parliament to vote against the LGBT law.

Christians in Spain are asking Members of Parliament to vote against a “LGBT Non Discrimination and Equality” law which could restrict basic freedoms of citizens.



The majority of political parties have already expressed their support for the bill, which could be passed in September. The text of the draft law has been co-authored by the Spanish Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals and Bisexuals, and was registered in parliament in May by leftist party Unidos Podemos.



 



GENDER IDEOLOGY IN SCHOOLS, MEDIA AND HEALTH CARE



The new law claims to fight homophobia, and therefore will incorporate “obligations and duties” for the state administrations to establish “proactive policies” to promote LGBT ideologies



A “system of offenses and fines that guarantee the effectiveness of equality and non-discrimination” would also be put in place, the draft law says.



One of the most controversial aspects of the draft law is the creation of a political body, the State Agency for LGBT rights, which manages the promotion of gender ideology in areas such as education, health care, media, workplace, leisure and sports.



Read more details about this draft law.



 



SIGNATURES TO STOP THE LAW



Many Christians in Spain have expressed their worries about the implications this law could have on religious freedom and freedom of speech.



The Federation of Evangelical Religious Entities in Spain (FEREDE) asked the Advisory Board for Religious Freedom of the government to analyse the text to see if it clashed with basic rights protected by the Spanish Constitution. This proposition was accepted.



Meanwhile, the Spanish Evangelical Alliance responded to the call of many churches by launching an online petition to stop the law. Over 5,000 people signed the petition in the first 24 hours.



You can read and sign the petition here.



 



STATEMENT SENT TO POLITICAL PARTIES



 



In addition, a statement by the Spanish Evangelical Alliance analysed the draft law and expressed the position of the majority of evangelical Christians in the country.



 



Download a summarised version of the statement in English (PDF).



Download the full version of the statement in English (PDF).



READ STATEMENT



 



Barcelona, 12 July 2017



The Spanish Evangelical Alliance’s position on the proposed bill “against discrimination with regard to sexual orientation, identity or gender expression and sexual characteristics, and of social equality for the LGBTI community”.



(This is a summary of the full statement).



Historically, Protestants in Spain have had to endure suffering and persecution; we therefore think that proactive measures should be implemented to help change how society relates to us. We also believe that government should be proactively promoting real changes in the laws of religious equality that will overcome our historical invisibility and the lack of recognition of our rights.



All public authorities will promote Protestant visibility and celebrate our special commemorative dates. Training in Protestantism will be mandatory for professionals working in all areas of public services. All local and government administrations will promote the participation and representation of Protestants publicly. A State Agency is to be created to fight the discrimination of Protestantism. Protestant doctrine will be fully included in curricula at all educational levels. When a Protestant claims discrimination on the basis of his or her faith and provides substantiated evidence, the defendant shall be required to provide objective and reasonable justification.  It is forbidden to preach to a Protestant to convert him to another belief or religion using aggressive counter arguments, even if he asks for it.



You don’t need to say it yourselves, because we ourselves say it: this would be absolutely inappropriate because it would afford privileges which are incompatible in a democratic society where everyone has equal rights. Why is it not appropriate for Protestants and is acceptable for the LGTBI community? The bill under reference does not present objective evidence that LGTBI people are discriminated against in Spain nor that they may need special protection to justify such a law.



 



Prejudice, intolerance, false progress and specific ideology



This text is presented as a progressive initiative to combat prejudice, but is in fact itself impregnated with prejudice and intolerance and appears unable to distinguish between respect for people and the right to dissent. It limits, therefore, the freedom of parents to teach values to their children, and the right to disagree and to say so in public. The text is loaded with ideology and lacks any scientific base to support it up.



Social progress is not defined by elites working from their own agenda, but is built by consensus with all of society, listening to everyone´s views, and is proved by its results. We cannot conclude that the bill is progressive just because many people believe it to be so, but we must ask the question: what kind of a society does it really promote? A society impregnated with tolerance or dogmatism? With diversity or a specific ideology? With freedom or with coercion? Laws drafted by a lobby with its own agenda or drafted after taking into account that society’s social diversity?



From the start it establishes the principle that “gender is a human category that can be in constant evolution and as such has to be perceived as a vital experience, a diverse journey in time and form”; this is a dogma based on ideology, not on scientific evidence, and you cannot build a truly democratic, progressive society based only on dogmas. In this bill there is no room for any discussion or alternative viewpoints.



As Protestants we reject being under tutelage, and this bill is impregnated with it by the LGBTI action groups, which are granted prerogatives and powers of control that no other group is granted under any other law.



 



Threats to democratic liberties



Protestants know what it means to suffer discrimination, but we have never used this to our advantage or claimed privileges over other groups. Privileges for a sector of the population are incompatible in a democracy, but the entire bill that is being proposed is full of special privileges for the LGBTI collective. Here are some examples:



- It imposes biased visibility for this group; it provides for the setting up of a specific Interdepartmental Plan and of a National Centre for LGBTI Historical Memory. It turns the LGBTI activists into judge and jury through their participation in the "State Agency for Non-discrimination based on Sexual Orientation".



- It penalizes not only the breach of law, but also the failure in proactive compliance. It establishes gender dogma indoctrination at all educational levels. It defines specific measures to support the LGTBI collective at work. It imposes specific criteria on the media, together with their corresponding coercive measures.



- It prohibits homosexuals or transsexuals to revert to their biological sex, establishing severe penalties for professionals who assist the person, even where the interested party gives consent to that reversion.  It addresses the cross-hormonal treatment of minors with astonishing levity, disregarding the recommendations of medical science, and contradicts the Patient Autonomy Law 41/2002, where it is clear that the child cannot give their own consent in situations comparable to the one mentioned.



- It imposes the inversion of the burden of evidence, a basic ingredient of the rule of law, thereby eliminating the equality of all before the law and thus generating legal uncertainty. It grants unlimited power to the state, something very foreign to western democratic thinking, by invading areas of competence within civil society and the family. The proposed sanctions regime seems to us to be exaggerated; at the same time, it is unacceptable that what is not tolerated against the LGTBI is however tolerated, for example, against Catholics, under the pretence of “freedom of expression.”



 



Conclusion



We are not alarmed at the proposition of law only because it clashes with our Christian worldview, but because it threatens the democratic liberties of all citizens regardless. It is rooted in dogma rather than scientific evidence; it imposes a particular ideology, instead of recognizing the free concurrence of proposals; it contradicts the equality of all citizens by granting one social group privileges over others; it restricts freedom of conscience and freedom of speech; it invades the competences of civil society and the family.



We invite legislators to recover the spirit of democracy and genuine diversity in the debate on this bill and not be prey to dogma, a new orthodoxy, tutelage, inequality and intolerance, especially when disguised as progress.



 



The Executive Board of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance.



 



 


 


POLL
LGBT laws
Is gender ideology actively promoted by the government in your country?



SEE MORE POLLS
 
 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - “LGBT law restricts freedom of conscience and freedom of speech”
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe

The economist summarises the manifesto “Confederal Europe: Strong Nations, Strong Union” and explains why personal relationships should be at the centre of our economy, education and democracy. 

 
Gary Wilkerson: The Bible, the Holy Spirit and the Reformation Gary Wilkerson: The Bible, the Holy Spirit and the Reformation

Pastor Gary Wilkerson talks about what all evangelical Christians can learn from the Protestant Reformation and underlines the need for more churches with both a sound doctrine and obedience to the Holy Spirit.

 
Israel, the UN resolution and the long conflict Israel, the UN resolution and the long conflict

Shira Sorko-Ram, pastor and journalist in Israel, shares her views and a historical and biblical context on the latest events.

 
Lindsay Brown: Islam and the Gospel in Europe Lindsay Brown: Islam and the Gospel in Europe

Is the arrival of thousands of Muslims to Europe a threat to Christianity? What is the growth of evangelical churches in Eastern and Southern Europe? An interview with theologian and Lausanne Movement representative Lindsay Brown.

 
Giovanni Traettino: “Pope Francis is my brother in Christ” Giovanni Traettino: “Pope Francis is my brother in Christ”

Evangelical Focus asked the well-known Pentecostal pastor about his “open” approach to Roman Catholicism. Traettino defended his position about ecumenism during the Italian Evangelical Alliance 2016 assembly (8-9 April, Rome).

 
Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues

The World Evangelical Alliance Secretary General participated in the Italian Evangelical Alliance assembly (Rome, 8-9 April). In this interview with Evangelical Focus, Bp Tendero talks about the need to listen to local churches and to face challenges like the refugee crisis and climate change. 

 
Thomas Bucher: Vision of the EEA Thomas Bucher: Vision of the EEA

Influence in society, evangelical identity and projects in Europe. An interview with Thomas Bucher, secretary general of the European Evangelical Alliance.

 
Evi Rodemann: Youth and mission Evi Rodemann: Youth and mission

“We want to see the youth not just being equipped, but also being multipliers”, Evi Rodemann director of Mission-Net. The European Congress took place in Germany from December 28 to January 2.

 
Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum

Pritchard explains the vision of ELF, comments on the 2015 event in Poland and reflects on what it means to have an "evangelical identity".

 
Pablo Martinez comments on Evangelical Focus’ launch Pablo Martinez comments on Evangelical Focus’ launch

Author and international speaker Dr Pablo Martínez discusses the main challenges in Europe nowadays and hopes Evangelical Focus will be a useful tool to help build bridges between churches and society.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
I am not on sale I am not on sale

Young Christians gathered at Madrid’s central square Sol to denounce human trafficking. A flashmob highlighted the work of three evangelical NGOs which support women who escape sexual slavery in Spain.

 
The abilities of Mefi-Boset The abilities of Mefi-Boset

Christian ministry Mefi-Boset has been working with people with intellectual disabilities in their leisure time, and supporting their families in Terrassa and Barcelona (Spain) for 20 years. 

 
Re-evangelise Europe and renew the biblical church Re-evangelise Europe and renew the biblical church

The 2017 European Leadership Forum gathered hundreds in Poland to celebrate the Reformation and connect to better share the gospel in diverse national contexts. See picture gallery.

 
Stamps to commemorate the Reformation Stamps to commemorate the Reformation

Poland, Lithuania, Namibia and Brazil are some of the countries that have issued special stamps on the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 theses.

 
‘Reconciliation’ in the Basque Country ‘Reconciliation’ in the Basque Country

Bilbao hosted the Spanish Evangelical Alliance's annual meeting (assembly). Politicians, professors and evangelical representatives shared views on social reconciliation. The theme was also analysed from a theological perspective and in workshops. 

 
WPF17: A look at the world’s current issues WPF17: A look at the world’s current issues

A selection of pictures of World Press Photo 2017.

 
The Progress of Europe, deeply connected to Bible The Progress of Europe, deeply connected to Bible

Indian author Vishal Mangalwadi spoke about how the biblical worldview shaped the West. 300 professionals attended annual GBG meeting on faith and work in Cullera (Spain). Photos: J.P. Serrano, S. Vera.

 
Impressions of Lausanne's #ylg2016 Impressions of Lausanne's #ylg2016

Around 1,000 young Christian leaders from 150 countries are participating in the 2016 Lausanne Younger Leaders Gathering, to reflect on global mission.

 
“Spain, we pray for you” “Spain, we pray for you”

Hundreds of evangelical Christians from many denominations marched in Madrid (Spain) to pray for their city, the authorities and asking God to bring hope to its society. Many gathered in other cities on June, 11.

 
VIDEO Video
 
Walk Walk

A two-minute video on the meaning of Jude 24.

 
How can local churches evangelise their communities? How can local churches evangelise their communities?

Evangelist Michael Green speaks on how to mobilise the local church for effective evangelism.

 
What is scientism? What is scientism?

“Scientism is the view that Science provides knowledge, and that is the only source on knowledge”, says Rik Peels, Researcher at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam.

 
Living without your favourite things Living without your favourite things

A video by Open Doors UK & Ireland explains to children what it means to be a refugee. 

 
Playmobil animation on Luther’s life Playmobil animation on Luther’s life

British video platform GoChatter uses 4,000 individual photos to create stop motion video on Martin Luther's life.

 
Individualism: from the Protestant Reformation to 21st century capitalism Individualism: from the Protestant Reformation to 21st century capitalism

Indian author Vishal Mangalwadi on how the Protestant Reformation underlined individualism as a means to please God, and how secular Europe corrupted it.

 
Students in Europe: “We are present” Students in Europe: “We are present”

A summary video of the IFES Europe conference which brought together 1,700 students from many countries in Aschaffenburg (Germany) to reflect on God's mission in society.

 
You-To live-How? You-To live-How?

The Roldan Camacho are a Spanish couple with deafness. They tell us how the whole family experiences everyday life through sign language. A video report by Gabriela Pérez.

 
Philip Yancey interview Philip Yancey interview

An 8-minute interview with Philip Yancey on the role of Christians in a secularised society. Recorded in Madrid, September 2016.

 
An interview with Prof. John Lennox An interview with Prof. John Lennox

New atheism, the definition of "faith", Christianity in Europe, the role of the Bible in mission, and the need to listen more. An exclusive interview recorded at "Forum Apologética" (Tarragona, Spain) in May 2016.

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.