Joseph and Nicolosi, Linda Ames (2002).
is diagnosed as a developmental disorder that can be prevented and
treated. The claim is supported by numerous case study reports and
transcripts of real life stories (note chapters 9 and 10). It is also
substantiated by research studies written in layman’s language inviting
readers to exam the facts for themselves. The focus of the book, however,
is on the role of parents because they have the power to “influence
[their] child’s future sexual orientation. They are strongly advised to
intervene where intervention is necessary to bring up their sons and
daughters as males and females and there is no third gender (p.12).
Parents who fail to intervene when it is necessary “could lay the
foundation for future homosexuality” (p. 15). The concern and warning is
based on the authors’ conviction that, “to live well, humankind must
live in conformity with the natural order. Gender complementarity and
heterosexuality are, we believe, foundational to the natural order. When
we deny the importance of gender differences, we fail to respect an
integral part of what makes us human” (p. 240).
root problem for the developmental disorder is “some distortion of the
fundamental concept of gender” (p. 22) and terms such as
“gender-confusion, gender-disturbed, gender-confused, gender-identity
problem and gender-identity disorder” are used interchangeably in the
book. There are five markers to determine whether the child has the
disorder (p. 44):
one is “born gay”. There is no evidence demonstrating that
homosexuality is genetically or prenatal-hormonally set in stone simply
because that child has gender-atypical interests. In fact, none of the
research claims that homosexuality
is mandated by biology. Only the press and certain researchers do, when
speaking in sound bites to the public (p. 62)
The book should arrest the conscience of fathers since the main bulk of research and discussion presented is about boys. There appears to be more male homosexuals than female homosexuals, therefore, the “boy’s father has to do his part. He needs to mirror and affirm his son’s maleness” (p. 24). This crucial aspect is found wanting in a number of male homosexuals undergoing treatment who are “still searching for the masculine sense of self that should have been established in early childhood and then solidified through adolescence: (p. 25). Detachment from their masculinity begins with a weak relationship with the father,
fathers find a way to get involved in everything but their sons. They lose
themselves in their careers, in travel, in golf, or in any number of
activities that become so all-important to them that they have no time for
their boys. Or they fail to see that this particular son interprets
criticism as personal rejection (p. 26).
All fathers should take note that chapter four is a wake-up call if they aim for “heterosexuality for their sons!” (p. 74). The authors have listed three ways for single mothers to help their boys’ gender-identity development (pp. 75-76). The advice of finding a substitute for the absent father has strong implications for the church. Males teachers for Christian education of preschoolers and primary children are very few in numbers! Special attention should be given to boys and youths who lack a fatherly figure in their homes. Secondly, chapter six provides useful information for leaders of youth ministries.
Parenting comes with many challenges and “one of the greatest challenges faced by parents is the political war that rages around homosexuality” (p. 167). In chapter eight, the authors warn against the pressure to accept homosexuals as “born that way” by psychologists, media, teachers, talk show hosts, sex education curriculum and others that reflect a pro-gay perspective. Parents should not be swayed by them to believe that their “child’s sexual orientation just should not matter to [them] (p. 181).
The book should be a required reading for parents, counsellors, teachers and pastors who share similar concern to help children develop a gender identity that conforms to God’s design to develop a healthy heterosexual orientation in their adolescent years and in adulthood.
by Dr Ng Peh Cheng)
last week was led by Dr John Lim. He provided the following summary.
began with a question asked by a church member, "Pastor, why doesn't
God answer my prayer?" This is a tough question and the many
spiritual platitudes are not sufficient to answer it. He drew on his
understanding of Job and his own experience to answer the question. From
the book of Job, Dr Lim discovered there is hope and help we can draw from
Job's experience. In spite of the many difficulties and unanswered
prayers, Job made at least three affirmations:
Habakkuk affirms a similar attitude Christians should adopt when
experiencing difficulties and unanswered prayers,
"Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on
the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I
will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior"
(Habakkuk 3: 17,18).
next Wednesday is Christmas Eve, there will be no Chapel till 31 Dec.
Catherine Cheng 15/12
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This page is updated on 19 Dec 2003.