Adventist Chaplain Terry Rice Waits “Indefinitely” for Church Endorsement

(George Tichy) #29
  1. Perhaps it would also be good to ask some professional if the “homosexual condition” (nature) is a sin.

  2. Has anyone informed us here that Mr. Rice is living a sinful life, i.e., in a prohibited relationship? He is a confessed gay,. but, is he practicing homosexual behavior?

For a deeper, wider, and more interesting conversation on this issue, the LOUNGE is the only option. Please visit:

(Janet Marson) #30

But when you say he should keep his sexual orientation to himself, you seem to be saying you’re rather people stay in the closet. How is it Christlike to keep silent about it? Isn’t that withholding truth? Shouldn’t we accept people for who they are, not who we want them to be?

(Terence Rice) #33

Steve, thanks for your perspective. Your words are something that peers into my reality very well. I’ve crossed that bridge when I came out 8 years ago and the freedom of being honest and living with integrity by faith is truly life fulfilling and amazing as I become more and more aware of it. God calls me to very unlikely circumstances, the first being the main floor chaplain of a Catholic hospital, where I don’t fit the Catholic stereotype of a nun, rather a gay Adventist. I can take part in the best parts of SDA community in College Place and not be easily hurt by it. I’m thankful of being in an age (for the first time in GLTBQ history) where there are options and I can speak of my walk without getting hurt. I don’t plan on leaving the Adventist community, but I plan on embracing more communities as my own down my road of life.

(Terence Rice) #34

What I believe about doctrine is not very related to my hospice work. Its how I’m aware of my beliefs that makes sure I don’t impose it on others. For example, a very discouraged couple whose mother was on hospice talked to me in the lobby of an assisted care facility. They were disturbed at what was happening in their evangelical protestant denomination, where they saw a gay person singing on a praise team up front. They asked me if I could help them find a less affirming church so that they could be comfortable again. And I gave them a few church referrals that fit their needs. They thanked me… They were so happy! And I was happy for them.

(Gerhard Dr Svrcek Seiler) #35

When retiring, researchr Volkmar Sigursch published his last book 2013, a summary of his scientific work for lifrtime : : “Sexualitäten” (sexualities).

With plenty of irony I would suggest that evevery candidate for ordiation should be thoroughly tested and have a hearing : “Are you really just women - oriented, Tortally, wholly ?” What about pedophile or sadistic masochistic or neckrophilke or or or or tedencies are hidden in the depth of your personality? A womanizer - a satyr ? Then, with your wife from college days you have a call to some little, remote church. There your wife gets bored. And there ist another sister in this church, so lovely, so kind to you, so understanding ? What then ?"

I konw of a couple, happily married for decades : He is a gay, she had amarriage full of abuse in the past, then a divorce that caused scandals and rumors - rebaptism - and they are happy together now for a long time…

Long ago we had a Bible worker. A single. very intelligent, a top writer for mission pamphlets, a great preacher in the puplpit - - - Once a fresh kid opnely and with witnesses askerd her about her sexuality. “Oh yes” - she said - " It is a hard time - never to feel a mans caressing - -" but that ist my call , the call for my life : MInistry".

One minister, youth secretary then, told us : “I like to be married, do also !. The shirts are ironed, the socks darnned, the breakfats ready in time - -” His wife , present, gut very pale around her nose.

(Musavadha) #37

People are overthinking this issue. And thats usually a prelude to compromise. Adventists have gone about the homosexuality issue the wrong way, and will be backed into a corner sooner than later. Here’s a simple algorithm showing how simple it should have been, without trying to play down the seriousness of the issue.

  1. Is homosexuality a sin. If yes go to 2. If not, exit here. The bible is not your guide.
  2. Does the church allow people openly practising sin (any sin) to hold office? If yes, you are not following church manual and indeed the bible and cannot be called an Adventist Church. If not, problem solved.

Now the big issue according to me is a desire, or rather lack thereof of homosexuals to change their ways. Adulterers, thieves, liars; all sinners of equal measure, do not go to church with the intention of not changing their ways through the help of the Holy Spirit. In the end, isnt that why we all go to church? And while that sin, that case of adultery, stealing, and even not tithing, is known and still on an individual, you cannot hold office. It surely cannot be any different then for homosexuality, which is the only sin trying to break this doctrine. It cant be.

Now, while struggling with your sin ( and indeed yielding to the Spirit for victory), you are very welcome in any Adventist church as a congregant. And you then form the body that office bearers must serve and support in drawing back to Christ

We cannot and must not alter the standard of Gods word. One not fit for office tried to save the ark as it was falling. He was struck dead. We cant bring our own standards to Gods Service.

The absence of a desire or effort to change on the part of the homosexual member is also a denial of the transforming power of Christ. Adventists believe in that power.

Lastly, we cannot endorse the wrong thing because so much good is being realised through it. I noticed the article really drove that point home. And its magnificent work too. But if the ends justify the means, a lot of vices would pass that test, and it’s well within the devil’s ability to do.

Its dangerous ground, this. We need to tread carefully

(Tom Loop) #38

I don’t know what happened to my original post here, but let me tell you something, that I’ll repeat again. There is something very dehumanizing about holding a secret inside knowing you are one piece of information away from people who love ans support you suddenly abandoning you if they know you are gay. All Terry did as far as we know was come out of the closet and be honest about himself. What’s wrong with that??? I’m sick and tired of people who look at us gays as nothing more than a sex act instead of a whole person. I suppose you would think it was better for Terry to just break the ninth commandment and live a lie by denying who he is. None of us choose to be gay. When did you choose to be straight?

(Pagophilus) #40

I notice my previous comment was deleted (this is becoming so old hat) so I’ll write another one.

I notice that Terry Rice used to be on the board of Kinship as Director of Church Relations and chair of the Advisory Council.

I also notice that the Adventist church makes the following statement: “Church members engaging in inappropriate sexual activity or the promotion of any sexual behavior that is inconsistent with Adventist beliefs and mission are ineligible for employment.”

Now, if you go to Kinship’s website and read any of their newsletters you will see that they are not just a support organisation but very much an advocacy organisation. You could easily see them as being involved in the “promotion of any sexual behaviour that is inconsistent with Adventist beliefs”. Thus, even though this is not about Adventist employment, it is no wonder that Terry Rice cannot be endorsed by the Adventist church.

(Cherry) #42

If sexual/gender determination is genetic or embryonic and not chosen by the baby then why can you be born blind and be a ‘practicing’ blind person but if you are born gay you are considered immoral if you are a ‘practising’ gay person? Why would a person be exluded based on birth traits?!

I wish our bible scholars would research the issue and look at the ancient cultures mindset, use of language, activities and how God might be trying to make life better for ostracized or devalued people like women or homosexuals etc. I find more written in the bible about judging, shunning, discriminating, excluding then I do about homosexual activities.

If God knew us before we were born and knitted us together in our mother’s womb why then would He turn around and discard us? Why would He make us, and then say because we are born this way our punishment for His handiwork is to live but we can’t exercise the desire for love that He created in us?!

I was raised with all those abomination texts and I can see how hateful it has made church members about this question. I am sooooooo grateful for the pastors, chaplains, prinicipals, school teachers, church members, and families in our denomination that are practicing love and inclusion for all kinds of people. I am aware it will be a very slow process but it gives me hope for those precious little children growing up being taught that only certain differences are acceptable and that their difference is an abomination to God by no choice of their own.


This is so true. The same chapter used against abortion, Psalm 139, seems ignored when it comes to birth traits unchosen by anyone but God.

(Terence Rice) #45

Having other straight male pastors who have personal issues (appearing too liberal or conservative with their colleagues) decide whether or not my local ministry blessed by God has no biblical warrant… the buck should stop at the local community where it is directly impacted and without strings attached.


Dear Terence,

Your stand as demonstrated in the interview and in your responses to replies impressed me as being articulated with such grace, inclusiveness, consideration for others, integrity, and the patience of (and with) the saints. The LORD is obviously blessing and affirming your ministry, and it sounds as though you have found a satisfying, worthwhile, and challenging niche in hospice chaplaincy. Since the Deity is rewarding your intelligent, faithful, spiritual, sensitive, and godly efforts, why in heaven’s name is the Church on earth keeping the kingdom supposedly closed with its keys? You are injuring no one and are manifestly pro-active for the good of so many others. And your career and increased effectiveness are stalled because of lack of necessary and deserved recognition.

My late Mother went through hospice and was laid to rest in the Lord as gently as possible. I know what a comfort it is to have support at such a time. Are not those on the right hand of favor at the second coming commended for visiting the sick? Are they instead given a questionnaire or told to wait in limbo? I do not see how anyone’s interest’s, or the church’s either are served by this travesty of justice in regard to your earnest and faithful service.

I have been told by those coming from an area of the country where they might otherwise have discriminated that when wounded in battle it didn’t matter to them at all that they were cared for by one of another race; indeed it ever afterward made them as close to that person as to a brother.

Amazing how one can sometimes find more welcoming, friendly, caring fellowship outside of one’s own denomination. From 2011 through the end of this year I came to be a regular part of the choirs of another church (I won’t say faith–there is one faith) These warm and caring people supported me through their prayers and interest, whether they believed as I did or not, while I went, as it was soon to turn out, through the sad wrench of divorce, for which I was criticized by my own church members; and not long after, through the slow demise of my cherished Mother. God used the experiences with these other choirs to sustain my life during its trying ordeals through the fellowship of the choir members, the spirituality of the directors, and the Biblical content of the music we sang. I stayed with my Mother on Sabbaths in order to free up other family members for church responsibilities. Toward the end of this period, when members noticed that I was not rehearsing with our choir on Sabbath afternoons, the question was raised as to why; and it was related to them that it was “because” I was singing with the [*] church choir–not at all the reason.–The latter met Sundays, Mondays, and Wednesdays, and there was no conflict. (I was not rehearsing with the SDAs because I was at Mother’s side to cheer her Sabbaths.) The revelation of my supposed straying caused consternation in the ranks, as people began to fear for my salvation and some came to labor with me about it, when earlier no attention or support had been given me while I cared for Mother. Since I was worshiping on a “false Sabbath,” there was indeed true concern for me, concern that I appreciated, from those who spoke up to talk to me about it. Others simply were stand-offish with me, evidently thinking me less spiritual for my prolonged absence, when I began to come back to our services again after Mother’s death. I had also been told earlier, when asking about some church communal activity of interest, that If I would attend, I would know what was going on at church. These attitudes grieved me during increasingly difficult times, and burdened my already taxed energies. I would have been most glad for your skilled and well qualified ministry at such a time, Terence; and I felt keenly the loss of support from and standing in my local church. Fortunately, as you say, the Lord’s affirmation is of infinite value, and His undergirding strength, essential. He used the other choirs in a wonderful way, though, in addition to giving me His stamina and courage and help in my personal relationship with Him.