LifeWay, a chain of Christian bookstores affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, has banned popular Christian author Jen Hatmaker over her recent support of LGBT rights, Christianity Today reports.
"In a recent interview, [Hatmaker] voiced significant changes in her theology of human sexuality and the meaning and definition of marriage – changes which contradict LifeWay's doctrinal guidelines," LifeWay spokesman Marty King told Baptist Press.
"As a result, LifeWay has discontinued selling her resources."
LifeWay's B&H Publishing has produced several of Hatmaker's resources, including the best-seller "7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess."
Hatmaker in the past has written on her blog she sees the biblical pattern of one man and one woman as God's plan for families, but she also has expressed concern the Christian community has not shown as much respect as it should for gays and lesbians.
But it was an Oct. 25 interview with Religion News Service that appears to have been behind LifeWay's decision to part ways with her.
"Not only are these our neighbors and friends, but they are brothers and sisters in Christ," Hatmaker said. "They are adopted into the same family as the rest of us, and the church hasn't treated the LGBT community like family. We have to do better."
In the interview, Hatmaker also said, "From a civil rights and civil liberties side, and from just a human being side, any two adults have the right to choose who they want to love. And they should be afforded the same legal protections as any of us. I would never wish anything less for my gay friends. From a spiritual perspective, since gay marriage is legal in all 50 states, our communities have plenty of gay couples who, just like the rest of us, need marriage support and parenting help and Christian community. They are either going to find those resources in the church or they are not."
She said she would have no problem celebrating a same-sex wedding, but was not as clear on whether such a relationship could be seen as holy.
"I do (believe an LGBT relationship can be holy)," she said. "And my views here are tender. This is a very nuanced conversation, and it's hard to nail down in one sitting. I've seen too much pain and rejection at the intersection of the gay community and the church. Every believer that witnesses that much overwhelming sorrow should be tender enough to do some hard work here."
LifeWay told Christianity Today it does not have a "blacklist" of authors, though it has discontinued sales of books by several authors popular in the Christian community. It also cited doctrinal differences in those instances.
Authors who are no longer featured in LifeWay stores include, Joel Osteen, William P. Young and Joyce Meyer.
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