Gracie Fletcher, Staff Writer
Established Christian book store LifeWay Christian Stores is known as one of the biggest providers of Christian resources in the business and supporter of evangelical published authors. After housing the works of blogger and author Jen Hatmaker, Lifeway is now pulling Hatmaker’s books off its shelves.
On October 31, Hatmaker took to Facebook to share her opinion on the controversial topic of the LGBTQ community within the church. Hatmaker approached her post in a series of numbered thoughts stating “…the LGBTQ community is watching. They are listening. They are watching how we respond, how we talk about them, how we actually feel about them in our churches.” Hatmaker proceeded in her post to discuss how those in the LGBTQ community are in one’s church family or even the family underneath one’s roof, stating that they are loved by Jesus beyond their sexual orientation.
After Hatmaker’s post was released, the Nashville, Tenn.-based bookstore said that the author’s opinion violated LifeWay’s doctrinal guidelines and that the author’s books would be discontinued from 185 stores across the nation.
Australian renowned Hillsong United front man Joel Houston also responded to Hatmaker’s opinion by stating that it was “refreshing." Those in disagreement have made Houston a victim of unnecessary social media hate by telling Hillsong fans to no longer engage in their music. Houston has since then deleted his comments.
NGU student Savannah Hovis, sophomore, offered the following reaction to the controversy: “We are called to love all people of all walks of life even when it is not easy,” Hovis said. “The Bible states homosexuality is a sin but also states lying is a sin which is both equal in God’s eyes.”
Hovis said she believed that the church shouldn’t be a place of condemnation but instead, a shelter over those who see God’s love past what the world has to offer. “The church is not meant to turn away people but should accept those to come as they are,” Hovis said.