Conservative evangelical pastor apologises to Gay Community

Press Release – Elephant TV

The Same-Sex Marriage episode in the first series of elephantTV opens with a surprise apology from conservative evangelical Pastor Rowan Hilsden for the way the Christian church has treated the LGBTI community, ” traditional Christianity …

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Media Release 21 January 2013

“conservative evangelical pastor apologises to the Gay Community”

for immediate release : www.elephant.tv

The “Same-Sex Marriage” episode in the first series of elephantTV opens with a surprise apology from conservative evangelical Pastor Rowan Hilsden for the way the Christian church has treated the LGBTI community, “traditional Christianity and those from an evangelical background have treated people… the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community, extraordinarily poorly.” Rowan’s apology was sincere and unexpected, and set the tone for a warm conversation.

In this episode Broadcaster Pat Brittenden hosts a panel discussion between Father Dr Merv Duffy, Pastor Rowan Hilsden, Australian psychologist and author Dr. Stuart Edser, and Chaplain and Rainbow Youth Counsellor Lisa Michelle. It is a balanced but firm invitation to the church to enter into open dialogue about same-sex marriage.

Host and show creator Pat Brittenden said the filming of the Same-Sex Marriage episode was “very emotional.” He and co-creator Idoya Munn were expecting the filming of the Same-Sex Marriage episode to be heated, with potentially more animosity than the other three episodes (Evolution, War and Women in Authority). However, while the conversation around same-sex marriage was at times serious and intense, there was also a surprising level of mutual respect between the four contributors.

The aim of elephantTV is to present a range of perspectives on issues that are contentious within the church. Pat Brittenden says “We are creating easily accessible, intelligent, respectful and balanced conversations, where we have PhD’s and laypeople, priests and scientists talking openly about the big issues in the church and in the world today.” Pat also thinks that “these conversations will be watched by those inside and outside the church, if I’ve learned anything from my years in talk radio it’s that everyone loves talking religion.”

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