Monday, July 23, 2007

Tammy Faye's last message: gay minister performs funeral

Tammy Faye Bakker Messner broke the rigid line in fundamentalist circles about their treatment of the gay and lesbian community. And now it has been revealed that she took one last step down the path of reconciliation between two cultural forces that have been at war. Her family says that her funeral was done precisely according to the instructions she left. And that meant having a gay minister, Rev. Randy McCain, from the Open Door Community Church, conduct the funeral for her.

Like Tammy Faye, McCain started in the Assemblies of God. He attended an Assemblies of God college, Evangel College and then transferred to their Western Bible College. He was associate pastor of a church in Sherwood, Arkansas when he entered into a committed same-sex relationship. Church leaders advised him to keep the relationship a secret. After some time he decided he couldn't live like this and informed the church elders who promptly sacked him. McCain and some friends then started the Open Door Community Church. Tammy Faye's son, Jay Bakker, has preached at the Open Door Community Church and said they helped open his eyes on gay issues.

To read a more detailed report on Tammy Faye's unique links to the gay community go here.

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