LifeWay Christian Stores has pulled the books of bestselling author Jen Hatmaker from their shelves over her recent support of LGBT rights.
The bestselling Bible study author said recently in a Religion News Service (RNS) article that she affirms gay marriage from both civil and spiritual perspectives, and advised the church to embrace members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community who profess Christianity.
“From a civil rights and civil liberties side and from just a human being side, any two adults have the right to choose who they want to love. And they should be afforded the same legal protections as any of us. I would never wish anything less for my gay friends.
“Not only are these our neighbors and friends, but they are brothers and sisters in Christ,” Hatmaker said in the RNS question and answer column. “They are adopted into the same family as the rest of us, and the church hasn’t treated the LGBT community like family. We have to do better.”
She added that now that same-sex marriage is legal nationwide, there are plenty of gay couples who “need marriage support and parenting help and Christian community.”
The Southern Baptist chain stated Thursday that the author’s statements “contradict LifeWay’s doctrinal guidelines,” and it has discontinued selling her books in its 185 stores or online.
Spokesman Marty King said: “In the past, LifeWay Christian Resources published several resources with Jen Hatmaker. In a recent interview, she voiced significant changes in her theology of human sexuality and the meaning and definition of marriage—changes which contradict LifeWay’s doctrinal guidelines. ”
Hatmaker gained notoriety when her 2013 blogpost on the rigors of mothering school-age children went viral, landing her an interview on NBC’s Today Show. Her HGTV home renovation show, “My Big Family Renovation,” debuted in 2014, and she has been popular among many evangelical women.