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March 28, 2014 at 9:07 AM

World Vision’s reversal on marriage policy for gay workers is start of a conversation

For a mere 48 hours this week, World Vision stood up for the legal rights of gay people to be married and to work for its international humanitarian mission. Finally, here was an example of how a faith-based charity could respond and adapt to a controversial social issue such as same-sex marriage.

Screenshot of World Vision's web site, which includes the option for donors to sponsor a child from various developing countries.

Screenshot of World Vision’s web site, which includes the option for donors to sponsor a child from various developing countries.

What a disappointment on Wednesday to see this venerable global relief organization buckle under pressure from its conservative faction. As The Seattle Times’ Lornet Turnbull reports in this Thursday news story, World Vision apologized profusely to its supporters as it re-implemented its policy of refusing to employ gay Christians in same-sex marriages.

One would think that most people could overlook a minor HR rule and coalesce around World Vision’s human rights causes. Every year, the Federal Way-based Christian agency helps 400 million people around the world struggling with poverty, natural disasters, and sex trafficking.

Instead, the backlash was swift and sometimes mean-spirited.

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