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Journey of grace - From lesbianism to the parking lot to church: An interview with author...
World Magazine ^ | March 8, 2013 | Marvin Olasky

Posted on 06/27/2013 12:08:33 PM PDT by scripter

Rosaria Butterfield was a tenured professor at Syracuse University, until God used her desire to write a book on the religious right, and the friendship of a biblically orthodox pastor, to draw her to Christ. She became a voracious Bible reader, gradually saw that her new beliefs required her to upend her former life, and has now described what happened in The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert. I interviewed her on Jan. 11 in front of students at Patrick Henry College. By Feb. 20 about 30,000 people had viewed the interview on YouTube. Here are edited excerpts. 

Let’s start with the very first sentence in this terrific book: “When I was 28 years old, I boldly declared myself lesbian.” Did you feel heroic in doing so? I felt I was simply telling the truth. 

How did you get to that point? I was in graduate school and cared deeply about relationships. I even authored at least one article on the subject of morality and moral living. I was steeped in worldviews that buttressed a sense of equality and the high value of personal experience. I had wonderful relationships with many of my female colleagues—deeper, resonating relationships. For me, coming out as a lesbian, was the same way I might come out as someone who loves her dog or feeds her cat in the morning. It was bold in that it provided an edge for me in the world, but I like edges. It didn’t seem spectacular. It didn’t seem very extraordinary. It just was.

At age 36 and well-established at Syracuse, you wrote a critique of the Promise Keepers movement in the local newspaper and received lots of letters. You had a tray for fan mail and a tray for hate mail, but you didn’t know where to put a letter from a pastor, Ken Smith, because it wasn’t nasty, just questioning. I couldn’t dispose of this letter. I tried to, but at the end of the day I would fish it out of the recycling bin and put it back on my desk. It had some questions that no one had ever asked me in my life. At the end of the letter the pastor asked me, please, to give him a call. The title of the church was Syracuse Reformed Presbyterian Church, and I assumed reformed meant enlightened. An anthropologist colleague of mine said a meeting would be “GOOD FOR YOUR RESEARCH! Call him back!” So I did. 

What were some of the questions no one had asked you? One had to do with the nature of the Bible as a library, not just a book, that it contained every genre I used to teach from. He asked questions about my well-being. He asked, do I believe in God, and if so, what do I think He thinks of all this? He wrote in such a gracious way, and I was intrigued by it. 

You write that he invited you to dinner, and there was no air conditioning. Why was that a plus in your mind? I had presumed that evangelical Christians were people who felt entitled to a dominion over the earth that is hateful, violent, unhelpful, unkind. Air conditioning: not necessarily good for the ozone layer, and expensive. They had fans and served a vegetarian meal, which I appreciated because I felt at this point that the eating of meat was a violent activity and I didn’t want to be a part of it. Their home and their culture didn’t seem so different from mine. That put me at ease. 

Was there prayer before the meal? Amazing prayer. I had heard lots of prayer before. I was the heathen who got to overhear the prayers of many people at gay pride marches and in front of Planned Parenthood. I was going to hold my breath and get through the prayer, and then I could have a chance to get to some of my research by talking with this family. But it wasn’t like that at all: It was a very conversational prayer, a prayer that included asking God for forgiveness of sins, and in a very specific way. It wasn’t a terribly lengthy prayer but it had some details in it that made me think about myself, like forgetting to bring a meal to someone. Basic everyday things, but he was noticing them, and they were big enough to ask a holy God to forgive him for. 

You write that they didn’t “share the gospel” and invite you to church—and it was important that they did not do those things. Absolutely: I trusted them because they did not do those things. I knew the script. But Ken and his wife Floy were not talking to me as if I simply were a blank slate: “OK, here is someone who clearly needs the gospel, let’s make sure we get to these points before we let her leave our house.” They seemed more interested in having a long relationship with me. 



TOPICS: Current Events; Ministry/Outreach; Moral Issues
KEYWORDS: homosexualagenda; presbyterian; psalmody; rosariabutterfield; rpcna
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1 posted on 06/27/2013 12:08:33 PM PDT by scripter
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To: scripter
I thought this was well done. One questioned asked near the end of the article:
Christian, what did you have to give up to be here?
I think that hits home for many.

The 65 minute youtube interview can be watched here:

Interview with Rosaria Butterfield; January 11, 2013

2 posted on 06/27/2013 12:10:50 PM PDT by scripter
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To: little jeremiah; xzins

Ping. What do you think?


3 posted on 06/27/2013 12:12:12 PM PDT by scripter
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To: drstevej; OrthodoxPresbyterian; CCWoody; Wrigley; Gamecock; Jean Chauvin; jboot; AZhardliner; ...
GRPL Ping


4 posted on 06/27/2013 12:19:10 PM PDT by Gamecock ("Ultimately, Jesus died to save us from the wrath of God." —R.C. Sproul)
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To: scripter
"Christian, what did you have to give up to be here?”

Great question. If the answer is "nothing" you have some soul-searching to do.

5 posted on 06/27/2013 12:22:21 PM PDT by jboot (It can happen here because it IS happening here.)
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To: scripter

bookmark


6 posted on 06/27/2013 12:23:25 PM PDT by Pajamajan (Pray for our nation. Thank the Lord for everything you have. Don't wait. Do it today.)
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To: scripter

it proves the studies that show friendship evangelism is by far the most effective way people come to Christ.


7 posted on 06/27/2013 12:33:26 PM PDT by Secret Agent Man (Gone Galt; Not averse to Going Bronson.)
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To: scripter

I think it is very beautiful and I will ping it in a bit.

(Good to “see” you!!!)


8 posted on 06/27/2013 12:38:02 PM PDT by little jeremiah (Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. CSLewis)
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To: scripter

Zebra. Stripes. No way to change that.


9 posted on 06/27/2013 12:39:28 PM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: scripter

Fantastic article!


10 posted on 06/27/2013 12:44:14 PM PDT by JCBreckenridge ("we are pilgrims in an unholy land")
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To: Secret Agent Man

Jesus Himself employed various means of evangelism.

That said, so-called “friendship evangelism” (building relationship with non-believers) is an excellent way to communicate the truth of Christ.


11 posted on 06/27/2013 12:50:58 PM PDT by Theo (May Christ be exalted above all.)
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To: elkfersupper
Zebra. Stripes. No way to change that.

I don't see your point... if you're saying that she's a homo and will always be one, then are you not also saying that God cannot save from sin?

12 posted on 06/27/2013 12:51:10 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: Theo
That said, so-called “friendship evangelism” (building relationship with non-believers) is an excellent way to communicate the truth of Christ.

This is true.

13 posted on 06/27/2013 12:52:13 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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To: elkfersupper

“Zebra. Stripes. No way to change that.”

Very true my friend - short of meeting the man who knows everything about you:
http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/20-quotes-from-finally-free


14 posted on 06/27/2013 12:56:17 PM PDT by jonno (Having an opinion is not the same as having the answer...)
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To: Theo

Problem is many have the friendship part down pat. They just forget the evangelism.


15 posted on 06/27/2013 12:57:01 PM PDT by Gamecock ("Ultimately, Jesus died to save us from the wrath of God." —R.C. Sproul)
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To: Gamecock
Well, there is a difference between being a buddy - and being an actual, loving, friend...
16 posted on 06/27/2013 1:00:05 PM PDT by jonno (Having an opinion is not the same as having the answer...)
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To: jboot
"Christian, what did you have to give up to be here?”

I am reminded of a story I was told by someone who was involved with Alcoholics Anonymous for many years.

A new, younger woman was telling the group very passionately about how she "deserved" to be free of her addiction, God must make it so, we all "deserved" it, etc...

A longer-term member, who had once been a drug-user, gang-banger, did time in prison, etc... replied: "I pray God does not give me what I deserve!"

17 posted on 06/27/2013 1:04:52 PM PDT by PGR88
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To: scripter

bookmark


18 posted on 06/27/2013 1:15:45 PM PDT by Sergio (An object at rest cannot be stopped! - The Evil Midnight Bomber What Bombs at Midnight)
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To: OneWingedShark
I don't see your point... if you're saying that she's a homo and will always be one, then are you not also saying that God cannot save from sin?

Which god? Mankind has invented thousands of them.

Also, a lot of people including me don't think lesbianism is a sin.

19 posted on 06/27/2013 1:45:33 PM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: elkfersupper

Some people can and do change. Look at the lives of Bernard Natanson, Carol Everett and Norma McCorvey. Bob


20 posted on 06/27/2013 1:57:39 PM PDT by alstewartfan ("You have the most appealing surface I have seen. Bring it over here. Lay it down by me." Al Stewart)
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To: scripter
Her book. Get it, read it.

She has some interesting observations, on repentance and on sexual sin. Worth engaging.

21 posted on 06/27/2013 2:13:05 PM PDT by Lee N. Field ("You keep using that verse, but I do not think it means what you think it means." --I. Montoya)
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To: elkfersupper

“Which god? Mankind has invented thousands of them.”

The one mankind DIDN’T invent.

“Also, a lot of people including me don’t think lesbianism is a sin.”

Yeah well that would more or less follow not believing in God. In fact if you don’t believe in God there is no sin at all; rather things you personally think simply good or bad.

Sometimes I consider how quiet and orderly and peaceful my world would be if only there were no God...


22 posted on 06/27/2013 2:28:03 PM PDT by TalBlack (Evil doesn't have a day job.)
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To: little jeremiah

Good to see you, too. I’m at Capitola beach just thinking about everything and trying to pull everything together. Thanks for pinging it out.


23 posted on 06/27/2013 3:17:12 PM PDT by scripter
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To: elkfersupper
Have you ever heard of Michael Glatz, who found the Young Gay American magazine? He was most definitely gay and he walked away from the homosexual lifestyle.

Have you ever heard about Charlene Cochran? She founded Venus Magazine for lesbians. She also left the lifestyle and now uses her magazine to reach out to lesbians who want to leave the lifestyle.

24 posted on 06/27/2013 6:53:08 PM PDT by scripter
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To: scripter

Just for the record, she is no longer employed by SU, unsurprisingly.


25 posted on 06/27/2013 9:09:25 PM PDT by metmom (For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore & do not submit again to a yoke of slavery)
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To: scripter; elkfersupper
1 Corinthians 6;9-11 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

God is in the business of redeeming mankind and making us new creatures in Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:17-21 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

26 posted on 06/27/2013 9:16:31 PM PDT by metmom (For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore & do not submit again to a yoke of slavery)
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To: alstewartfan
Some people can and do change. Look at the lives of Bernard Natanson, Carol Everett and Norma McCorvey. Bob

I don't have to look past myself. That's all the evidence I need of the power of God.

Anyone can change, or rather God can change anyone. It's not something we have the power to do ourselves.

27 posted on 06/27/2013 9:18:48 PM PDT by metmom (For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore & do not submit again to a yoke of slavery)
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To: scripter
Christian, what did you have to give up to be here?

Nothing and everything.

I didn't need to clean myself up to come to God. He met me where I was.

And it cost me everything because I have been crucified with Christ and died to self.

28 posted on 06/27/2013 9:28:22 PM PDT by metmom (For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore & do not submit again to a yoke of slavery)
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To: metmom
Just for the record, she is no longer employed by SU, unsurprisingly.

"This is my conversion in a nutshell: I lost everything but the dog."

29 posted on 06/28/2013 7:09:37 AM PDT by Lee N. Field ("You keep using that verse, but I do not think it means what you think it means." --I. Montoya)
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To: scripter
Have you ever heard of Michael Glatz?

Have you ever heard about Charlene Cochran?

I have. I just don't care.

Just because I don't care doesn't mean I don't understand.

30 posted on 06/28/2013 7:47:35 AM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: elkfersupper

You are so wrong.

What you’re saying - is that Jesus died for nothing.

The cross of Christ is a cleansing flood.

He can, and does change people.

He raises them from the dead brings them to life!!!


31 posted on 06/28/2013 8:13:45 AM PDT by fishtank (The denial of original sin is the root of liberalism.)
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To: fishtank
You are so wrong. What you’re saying - is that Jesus died for nothing. The cross of Christ is a cleansing flood. He can, and does change people. He raises them from the dead brings them to life!!!

Fairy tales. Let me talk to one person that Jesus raised from being dead and I'll buy you a house.

32 posted on 06/28/2013 9:06:04 AM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: elkfersupper
You said: No way to change that, some examples were provided of well known gays who changed and you don't care. I just find your don't care comment a little odd considering your first comment there's No way to change that.
33 posted on 06/28/2013 9:12:37 AM PDT by scripter
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To: scripter
No way to change that, some examples were provided of well known gays who changed and you don't care. I just find your don't care comment a little odd considering your first comment there's No way to change that.

Granted. Okay, there may be a way to change that, but I still don't care.

34 posted on 06/28/2013 9:30:11 AM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: elkfersupper; 185JHP; 230FMJ; AFA-Michigan; AKA Elena; APatientMan; Abathar; Absolutely Nobama; ...
Homosexual Agenda and Moral Absolutes Ping!

Freepmail wagglebee to subscribe or unsubscribe from the homosexual agenda or moral absolutes ping list.

FreeRepublic homosexual agenda keyword search
[ Add keyword homosexual agenda to flag FR articles to this ping list ]

FreeRepublic moral absolutes keyword search
[ Add keyword moral absolutes to flag FR articles to this ping list ]

Zebras are born zebras and will remain zebras until the body falls to death. Human beings are not born homosexual and they can cahnge and many have and continue to do so. And to claim "you don't care" is false, since you are spending time commenting on the thread. It is possible to change - not just from "being" a homosexual, but from "being" a thief, liar, drug addict, alcoholic, adulterer, backstabber - or any kind of sinful behavior! Fact. True. No doubt about it.

Anyone wanting on/off any of my ping lists, freepmail ME, not wagglebee, as he has been away for a while.

35 posted on 06/28/2013 10:10:03 AM PDT by little jeremiah (Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. CSLewis)
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To: elkfersupper; scripter

If you really didn’t care, you would not have made one comment on the thread.

I don’t care about NASCAR, American Idol, Dancing with the Stars, football, etc - so I never click on those threads, read them, or comment! That’s what people do on FR to topics they don’t care about!


36 posted on 06/28/2013 10:11:38 AM PDT by little jeremiah (Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. CSLewis)
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To: little jeremiah
lj, I am still curious WHY the queers still claim it is in the genetics :/

Been proven so many times... in so many ways that it is NOT in the genes :/ Are they THAT stupid?
37 posted on 06/28/2013 10:15:02 AM PDT by Bikkuri (Molon Labe)
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To: elkfersupper
I'm not sure why you would comment on a thread you don't care about.
38 posted on 06/28/2013 10:36:08 AM PDT by scripter
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To: little jeremiah

Indeed. The behavior of some appear inconsistent or simply lack common sense.


39 posted on 06/28/2013 10:40:09 AM PDT by scripter
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To: Bikkuri; scripter

No, it’s not stupidity.

It’s all outline in their agenda from years ago. I will bump a thread in a bit with a summary from “After the Ball”, published in 1989, their plans to “Overhaul Straight America”.

This was consciously done, a lie, and they knew it is a lie. Just like the “10% are gay” lie - they knew it was a lie, and they pushed it to gain their objective.

The objective is to make those who practice sodomy a special “class” of people equivalent to blacks, or any other “minority” group, therefore under the protection of civil rights laws. That’s why that call those opposed to the normalization of homosexual acts “bigots”.

They keep promoting the lie that they are “born that way” although many admit they chose the “gay” life - to gain legal protection, status and to force everyone else to shut up.

And of course, now the out and out focus on children - “gay” children, “transgendered” children and so forth. This perversion and ruination of children is the freaking last straw. I don’t know what’s next, but IMHO there needs to be a massive pushback/shoveback from the rest of us. The only reason they’ve gained such power is that those who SHOULD have spoken the truth loud and clear didn’t. The few who did - Scott Lively, NARTH, Mass Resistence and a few more - were utterly demonized and had very little support from people and churches who SHOULD have supported them.

Silence and cowardice are the real reasons we’re at this low point.


40 posted on 06/28/2013 11:01:55 AM PDT by little jeremiah (Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. CSLewis)
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To: scripter
I'm not sure why you would comment on a thread you don't care about.

Because I do not understand why anybody would care about it.

41 posted on 06/28/2013 11:05:35 AM PDT by elkfersupper ( Member of the Original Defiant Class)
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To: Gamecock
GRPL Ping

Grand Rapids Public Library?

42 posted on 06/28/2013 11:33:48 AM PDT by Albion Wilde ("Remember... the first revolutionary was Satan."--Russian Orthodox Archpriest Dmitry Smirnov)
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To: metmom

God bless you, Metmom, This lovely young woman in my church who is leading Vacation Bible classes now was on the skids in life until she read Lee Strobel’s series of books, esp. Case for a Creator, and repented. God can heal, if we give Him a chance. Hugs, Bob


43 posted on 06/28/2013 11:40:34 AM PDT by alstewartfan ("You have the most appealing surface I have seen. Bring it over here. Lay it down by me." Al Stewart)
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To: Albion Wilde

Great Reformed Ping List.


44 posted on 06/28/2013 1:44:19 PM PDT by Gamecock ("Ultimately, Jesus died to save us from the wrath of God." —R.C. Sproul)
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To: elkfersupper

That’s a rather myopic worldview. I’m really glad different people care for different things and I’m really glad there are many others willing to help those with unwanted same-sex attractions.


45 posted on 06/28/2013 2:48:39 PM PDT by scripter
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To: Bikkuri; All

Bumped “After the Ball” thread - has a summary from the book, how they planned to “Overhaul Straight America”.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/1147428/posts?page=10


46 posted on 06/28/2013 4:33:18 PM PDT by little jeremiah (Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point. CSLewis)
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To: little jeremiah

lj, it was a rhetorical statement... I (we) know they have been working on taking control for over half a century... well, they have almost succeeded... :/

Our only hope now, is to get the public to see/understand what has happened (I guess it its too much to hope they see the BIG/WHOLE picture :/)..

It is def not enough that we on FreeRepublic know and understand what is taking place... and I am in NO position to ask others how or what to do since I am overseas and can’t physically make a physical protest :/


47 posted on 06/28/2013 4:53:03 PM PDT by Bikkuri (Molon Labe)
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To: Albion Wilde; Gamecock
42 posted on 6/28/2013 1:33:48 PM by Albion Wilde: “GRPL Ping Grand Rapids Public Library?”

Speaking as someone who went to school within walking distance of the main Grand Rapids Public Library building in downtown Grand Rapids, that's an amusing alternative acronym for the Great Reformed Ping List that I'd never thought of.

However, I don't think even back in the 1970s or early 1980s, when I was spending a lot of time in that library, that very many of the patrons of the Grand Rapids Public Library would have been mistaken for being confessional Calvinists. Grand Rapids has taken a serious wrong turn and did so several decades ago.

48 posted on 06/28/2013 7:08:40 PM PDT by darrellmaurina
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To: elkfersupper; OneWingedShark; alstewartfan; TalBlack; scripter; metmom; fishtank; ...
19 posted on 6/27/2013 3:45:33 PM by elkfersupper: “Also, a lot of people including me don't think lesbianism is a sin.”

Okay, Elkfersupper, I'm game for a debate on homosexuality.

I spent a lot of time on that issue years ago in a former denomination, and while I didn't expect to see that discussion here on Free Republic, I think we need to be ready to give an answer at all times and in all places for what we believe as Christians.

Let's start with a simple question for clarification, and then a more probing question.

1. You say you don't believe lesbianism is a sin. That is an unusual way to phrase the statement. Does that mean you do have an objection to male homosexuality but not to lesbianism? (Those familiar with these debates in Reform and Conservative Judaism may know why I'm asking the question, even though I'm guessing this is a tangent where Elkfersupper was not going.)

2. More to the point, however, your phrase implies that do you believe that sin exists, just that lesbianism isn't a sin. If I'm reading you correctly that you believe sin exists, how do we know what sin is?

I'll follow up based on your answers.

I don't want to presume what you believe; that's not fair to you and you deserve to be treated as an individual with your own views, neither blamed nor praised for somebody else’s views which you may not hold.

49 posted on 06/28/2013 7:26:20 PM PDT by darrellmaurina
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To: elkfersupper; sauerkraut
Elkfersupper, you're a Freeper and you've been here for quite a while. That means we agree about many things politically.

Please read this thread and then let's talk about the way people advocating an agenda very alien to what you and I believe have succeeded in manipulating American public opinion on homosexuality.

After the Ball—Why the Homosexual Movement Has Won
Crosswalk.com ^ | June 3, 2004 | Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/1147428/posts?page=10#1

50 posted on 06/28/2013 7:38:37 PM PDT by darrellmaurina
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