by Staff writer
A very unlikely sight took place at the annual pride event in Marikina City this year.
A group of Christians holding signs and boards attended gay pride to apologize for the ways religion has hurt the LGBTQ community in the past.
“My heart really felt light upon seeing them,” one of the marchers told reporters.
19-year-old Jamilah Salvador added: “I stopped when I saw them and read all of their messages and immediately felt goosebumps all over my body, then my tears started to build up.”
“Imagine living in a society with nothing but love and respect for each other,” she later tweeted.
The main banners held by the group listed the ways “Christians harmed the LGBT community,” including statements, such as “I’ve rejected and hurt your family in the name of ‘family values.'”
The other individual signs varied with messages like, “God loves you, so do we,” and “I used to be a Bible-banging homophobe…Sorry!!”
Salvador said “people absolutely loved” the group’s display, explaining that many marching in the parade had intense reactions to the messages.
|The teenager told CBS News that some “started bursting into tears upon seeing the signs while some hugged and talked to the Christians.”
“Some took photos, like what I did, and others just stood there in awe.”
The photos that Salvador snapped and then posted on Twitter quickly went viral, along with other attendees images.
The group’s pastor told BuzzFeed News, “We are apologizing for the way Christians have hurt the LGBT community, especially by using the Bible in condemning and judging them.”
The pastor continued that, “I used to believe that God condemns homosexuals, but when I studied the Scriptures, especially the ones that we call ‘clobber Scriptures’ that are being cherry-picked from the Bible to condemn LGBT people, I realized that there’s a lot to discover, including the truth that God is not against anyone. God does not discriminate against people based on gender.”
Paminiani stated that he hopes other Christians will not utilize Scriptures to condemn the LGBT community, because it is keeping people from participating in the church and from Jesus, according to BuzzFeed News.
“We pray that more and more Christians will act, speak, and love the LGBT people like Jesus would,” he said.