PMO received complaints about Crossroads Christian Communications

Canadian Press:

The Prime Minister’s Office and the office of the international development minister got about 170 letters and emails after The Canadian Press reported earlier this year on the $544,813 contract to Christian Crossroads Communications for humanitarian work in Uganda.

The criticism of homosexuality on the organization’s website raised concern about its operations in an African country where gays face persistent threats of physical violence and where notorious anti-gay legislation is before parliament.

The Harper government briefly announced a freeze in funds but later revised its position. Crossroads’ project is linked to the construction of latrines and wells, in addition to hygiene awareness, in Uganda.

In the days after the news broke, the government received 120 letters and emails from people opposed to funding Crossroads. About 50 others expressed support for continued funding.

I mentioned past anti-gay lobbying by Crossroads founder David Mainse here, when news surfaced in February that Crossroads Christian Communications had not updated their website, or apparently their thinking.

Crossroads sexual sins

Other religious groups in Canada, experienced and well equipped to dig wells in Africa have had their funding cut by the federal conservatives.

J.J.About four months before Canadians found out about Crossroads CIDA funding and the stance against gays, the organization hired a controversial Southern Baptist minister Jerry Johnston from Kansas, known for among other things,  his involvement in same sex marriage politics. Jerry Johnston is the Executive Director of Crossroads USA.

He announced a few days ago  that he is nearly ready to move Crossroads into the US market.

Crossroads US

This is what Johnston has basically offered up so far – sermons out of the Crossroads Burlington studios.  He has also been essentially re-cycling his past material from Jerry Johnston Ministries through Crossroads (for a price). Johnston is also a co-host on 100 Huntley Street, he’s like a fish out of water, despite the warmth and assistance shown him by the Canadian hosts.

When news of Crossroads official beliefs regarding homosexuality surfaced in February, the CEO and CCSO went on air to attempt damage control, and released a statement saying the broadcast organization was not anti-gay. Starts at 2:06:

I doubt some Crossroads employees  believe homosexuality is a perversion, or accept employers linking SSA and orientation to criminal activity, or believe in praying away the gay. The core viewership of 100 Huntley is now elderly, mostly pentecostal and charismatic and some of those viewers frame their support as elitist/ us/them/enemy:

“Please do not take the polical (sic) agenda of the gay movement targeted at the Christian faith to withhold aid to the needy, deprived and desperate people of the third-world countries.”

I doubt Crossroads was ever in danger of losing the rest of the CIDA funding, even with protests by Canadians, the broadcasters ties to the current government run deep.

The reality is Crossroads is a very conservative evangelical organization, and as they move their programming into the US with Johnston at the helm, I suspect it will become more so.

relief and development
It’s refreshing to know that on a 3 to 1 ratio, Canadians let the federal government know we don’t appreciate our tax dollars going to this organization, even though CIDA says the team in Uganda digging wells doesn’t discriminate.

 

 

Federal documents reveal that a representative of the Canadian International Development Agency visited the Crossroads project on Feb. 14-15 to monitor for discriminatory practices.

In her report, Wassala Nimaga said the access to water and latrines was being delivered as promised. The nine-page document did not delve into treatment of homosexuals but, from a more general standpoint, said Crossroads did not discriminate.

I doubt any GLBT Ugandan would dare mention their sexual orientation to Crossroads, the on-going day to day threat to their lives and well-being is all too real, and if the Crossroads Uganda well-digging team is proselytising or discriminating, they aren’t going to let a CIDA observer see. Hopefully Canadians speaking up will give the federal government pause, and tax payer funding for overseas water projects will be restored to competent, ethical, non-discriminatory Canadian organizations.

About Bene Diction

Have courage for the great sorrows, And patience for the small ones. And when you have laboriously accomplished your tasks, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.
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15 Responses to PMO received complaints about Crossroads Christian Communications

  1. Peter says:

    As a younger viewer and donator of Christian Crossroads, what exactly are you trying to say. If Christian Crossroads believes immorality is sin, just as the Bible says, are you saying they don’t have a right to that viewpoint?

    And now you don’t want people to dig wells because they operate in a country that doesn’t share your views?

  2. Bene Diction says:

    Hi Peter:

    I have no problem with what the bible says about immorality being a sin.

    I have a problem with saying ‘homosexuality is a perversion and a sin.’
    That’s like saying heterosexuality is a sin. Your orientation is not a sin or perverse.

    The distinction is not made on the former webpage between orientation and behaviour.

    There are many Christians who do not see SSA as immoral, perverse or sinful, let alone oppose rights and freedoms being granted for SSM.

    Of course Crossroads leadership have a right to their viewpoint, just as you have a right to agree and give them money.
    Does our government have the right to give Canadians money to an organization which actively opposed SSM and mislabels and marginizes a group of people, lumping orientation in with crimes (behaviour)?

    If Crossroads wants to dig wells, more power to them – go dig them with donor dollars, Crossroads has the privilege of charity status granted to them.

    After this became public Crossroads made it clear they support the Canadian government position on the Ugandan bill. You wouldn’t have known that from the webpage, and I honestly don’t know if I believe them – that was pr damage control done under duress.

  3. John Payzant says:

    This seems to be a rather hot button issues with both strong opinions and views

    Sometimes strong opinions on both sides

    Defining what a marriage is nowadays can seem to be quite a challenge

    So many different versions and experiences now adays

    My parents had a bad separation when I was 10 blew it all to smitherines

    That is what is the definition of marriage

    It happened right in the middle of a summer vacation

    This whole thing ought to be treated with sensitivity

    It is good to consult a marriage counselor

  4. John Payzant says:

    Bene with a society of children wracked by divorce can be challenging for us as to what even a marriage is?

    Our society is wracked by divorce

    These young children have grown up

    I’m now 53

    Now we have gay marriage

    At the same time hetrosexual marriages have and are falling apart badly

    Homosexuality:

    -Definitions:

    -From a mental illness to a non-mental illness

    -From a criminal offense to a non-criminal offense

    I feel if there are children are involved and present in the family and marriage is important for the parents to maintain the marriage.

    How:

    -With the help of mentors

    -We can’t always figure everything out on our own

    -Having those around is who know more than us in the areas of marriage is a good thing.

    -The children get damaged the most

    The wanting for gay marriage is talking about a rather small proportion of society

    Then all the opinions come

    But what about prevention

    All these persons today that I hear the opinions of where were they when I needed them.

    Maybe they might’ve saved my parent’s marriage

    Opinions and guidance is needed

    These is a needed time for it

  5. fjc says:

    Do not care one way or the other. I lost respect for Crossroads when I saw how they handled and explained away the Ponzi scheme that some of the Mainse family were promoting…..and how they benefited.

    Besides, I would never support any faith based organization that was so anti-gay or one that refused to have women as a key part of their ministry. And I don’t mean as Pastors of Sunday School or Music. I mean real leadership positions where their points of view and perspectives can make a positive contribution to the flock. IMHO, there is a desperate need to get away from this ‘old boys club’ mentality that cripples many faith groups.

  6. Bene D says:

    Crossroads is small potatoes as far as CIDA grants go, but they do have a bully pulpit, and if Johnston goes on air in the US, even more of one.

    While Crossroads glory days are far behind the organization (regardless of what market they break into, what distribution deals they work out or what they produce) they are a charity, and as such are responsible to their donors and the wider public.
    The public taking an interest on this latest blunder is a good thing.

  7. fjc says:

    Perhaps Mr. Johnson sees a financial opportunity in the US market. After all, Pat Robertson has done quite well from the faithful!

  8. ronmac says:

    When I read this religious group or that organization is “moving into the US market” it makes me stop and think. Since when did we all start becoming a market?

    When God gave Moses the 10 commandments He or She didn’t say, “Now go forth and sell this in the Hebrew market.” Or, “Go down from the mountain and organize a focus group.”

    Maybe I’m just an old fashioned but there’s something romantic about 13th century-style “death to the infidels” approach.

    On a more serious note lately I’m starting to get suspicious of LGBT rights advocacy. It’s like the old “white man’s burden” has been given an upgrade and it’s become another convenient excuse to meddle in other countries.

    They can say, look, this regeime is sponsoring terrorism, they’re anti-Semite, they’ve outlawed bingo and Flintstone reruns, and worst of all, they hate gays. So we need to go in and take them out. Bomb them back to the stone age if necessary.

  9. sinned34 says:

    Ronmac,

    Really? When have you heard anybody say anything close to “we need to invade this country to save gay people from being stoned by bigots?”

    I’ve heard “cut off aid to countries that pass barbaric laws condemning gays to death”, and “shame on Canadian religious groups that support the passing of barbaric laws in other countries”, but invading a country doesn’t seem to be high on the list of many liberals I know of.

  10. ronmac says:

    sinne34:

    Yeah it’s true no one has been saying we should invade this country or that country because they treat gays badly. Of course not. It’s a lot more subtle than that. I’m saying I’ve noticed gay rights being slipped into the laundry list of sins, presumably to persuade “liberal public opinion” that maybe intervention wouldn’t be such a bad thing.

    Look at Syria, the most prominent country being targeted for regieme change these days. Just for fun googled Syria and gay rights. Here are a couple of links

    http://gaycitynews.com/gays-and-the-syrian-revolution/

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/08/29/gays-of-syria-unite.html

    I don’t need to tell you the gays in Syria will be a million times worse off if Assad is overthrown and the “rebels” set up an Islamic state like they claim.

    The Harper gov’t seems to be backing off from supporting the Syrian rebels lately which goes to show that Saudi Arabia hasn’t been able to buy politicians here like they do in Washington. But I could be speaking too soon.

  11. Julian says:

    I have been on this site to offer my statements about Crossroads in the past couple years or more and as a former employee of Crossroads I must reiterate that by donating to Crossroads ministry or supporting the commercial sector of Crossroads (CTS) is something I would not do since I certainly know of money wasted in ways in this organization that is disgusting and reprehensible to say the least.

    Senior level Crossroads personal have been approached and addressed about this by former staff members that every time the individuals that justifiably address the significant wrong doing of Crossroads senior officials , the complainants voices are muzzled or are threatened to be quiet. I am one of a few that were “paid off” to keep quiet about Crossroads internal matters and abuses from some senior staff.

    When Crossroads is caught via public purview, Crossroads senior staff have a very profound propensity to obfuscate and be aggressively evasive.

  12. fjc says:

    Could not agree more. I saw the Ponzi interview where those five percent commissions for suckering in investors were passed off as a ‘sharing of God’s gifts’ or words to that effect. And the interviewer let them get away with it…clearly it had been rehearsed.

    They are anything but a forthright organization hence would never get a cent of my financial or moral support.

    It is more of a family business than anything else.

  13. John Payzant says:

    bene
    re:comment 2

    as a member of the Anglican Church of Canada for about 20 years

    In our Diocese of New West:

    -most don’t mind SSA & SSM

    -most of the Priests aren’t allowed to

    -there are not many requests for them

    It’s kind of like, I don’t mind what you’re interested in

  14. fjc says:

    Is there anyone out there who actually believes that the Crossroads organization have a shred of integrity left?

  15. Pingback: Crossroads Christian Communications top management shake up, CEO Don Simmonds steps down | Bene Diction Blogs On

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