Bethel Statement on AB2943 Being Withdrawn
August 31, 2018
At 9:00 AM on Friday, August 31, 2018, California Assemblyman Evan Low announced that he has withdrawn Assembly Bill 2943 from consideration at this time.
We are grateful for Assemblyman Low’s courage and humility in his willingness to dialogue with California pastors and once-gay people these past months. He took time to hear how AB2943 would impact people of faith and particularly once-gay people, and has shown commitment to creating opportunities for further dialogue.
In a statement from Assemblyman Low regarding withdrawing the bill:
“It is my obligation as a Legislator to make this difficult decision in the interest of finding common ground. The path towards full equality is a long journey, but a journey best traveled together. I invite you to join me.”
We look forward to working together to continue the conversation, and are praying for God’s wisdom for the state of California.
To read Assemblyman Low’s full statement, click here.
Previous Bethel Statement on CA Bills Regarding Sexuality & Gender
March 23, 2018
We want to bring attention to some alarming upcoming legislation in the state of California. We have been made aware of three upcoming bills concerning same sex attraction and gender identity in children and nonminor dependents. We are releasing this statement in an attempt to educate families and ministries connected across California that may be of like-mind on these issues. These bills are troubling to us. Therefore, we have made this uncommon step of broadcasting our concern and encouraging the faith-based community in California to research and contact your assembly members regarding these bills.
If these bills passed, it would be illegal for anyone to sell resources that offer treatment or ministry in order to reduce or eliminate same sex attraction or gender dysphoria. This includes conferences, counseling, teaching, books, or publications, where money is exchanged for the resource. Also, children in foster care who expressed gender identity issues would be prohibited from receiving counseling or medical services that encouraged the child to embrace their biological gender. And, those who are asking for resources to assist with addressing unwanted sexual attractions or gender identities would be prohibited from accessing mental health providers, even if they themselves desire such resources.
Below, you will see information on the three Bills, as well as the letters that Bethel has submitted in opposition to AB 1779, AB 2943, and AB 2119. We encourage you to research these bills and act according to the Holy Spirit’s prompting to you.
Bill Descriptions and our Original Letters
Below is information about each Bill, including a summary written by our team and copies of the letters that we submitted.
AB 2943 Regarding Unlawful Business Practices
Proposed bill to prohibit resources concerning treatment or ministry in order to reduce or eliminate same sex attraction or gender dysphoria. Essentially, conferences, counseling, teaching, books, or publications, where money is exchanged for the resource, would be prohibited.
AB 2119 Regarding Foster Care
Proposed bill that mandates that any child in foster care expressing gender identity issues must only be provided counseling and medical services that affirm the gender identity that the child believes they have. Any professionally-guided exploration questioning that belief, or encouraging the child to embrace their biological gender would be prohibited.
AB 1779 Regarding Sexual Orientation
UPDATE: This bill has officially been pulled from the committee as of April 20, 2018.
Proposed bill to ban mental health providers from assisting in sexual orientation change efforts for adults under a conservatorship or guardianship who express same sex attraction or gender dysphoria. The bill amends legislation that already prohibits mental health providers from any kind of effort to treat same sex attraction or gender dysphoria in children under the age of 18. (We oppose the bill and the existing legislation.)
About Bethel Church Redding
For those unfamiliar with Bethel Church in Redding, CA, we are a large local church that has grown in the last 15 years. Nearly 10,000 people call Bethel their church home. Our statement of faith is consistent with Charismatic/Evangelical churches.
We appreciate and value all that God is doing through His larger, worldwide church and enjoy fellowship with the many great churches in Redding. All churches have an emphasis in their ministry. In addition to the good news of Christ’s love, we emphasize that Jesus promised signs would follow believers and that they would do even greater works than He did. So we believe all Christians can partner with God to do the same sorts of miracles today as He did in the New Testament. We often use the term “supernatural” to describe God’s active involvement in our lives. We believe God can heal supernaturally, but we also deeply value and access medical professionals, who have dedicated themselves to helping others and alleviating suffering.