我們Amplify2018的參與者今天聚集在臺北，要宣告神對所有人的愛。我們是來自不同背景、國籍、性取向、性別認同、性別表達和性特徵的基督徒。我們相信耶穌基督福音的核心是的愛，正義和包容。我們相信每個人都是按照神的形象創造的，每個人在神的眼裡都是寶貴的。我們認識到有些人有多元的性取向、性別認同、性別表達和性特徵。我們堅定地認為LGBTIQ不是心理障礙，不是精神疾病，不道德，不是邪惡，不是罪惡也不是墮落 -- 它純粹是反映神的大能所創造，令人驚歎的多樣性。
我們今天聚集在一起宣告：全人類 -- 每個人都是按照神的形象創造的。這身為人的身份不論性取向、性別認同、性別表達和性特徵。這認知使我們必須反對所有體制的歧視和同性戀恐懼癥，跨性別恐懼癥等個人態度。我們肯定性慾是一種神聖的恩賜。神希望我們通過能給予豐富生命力和互敬互愛的關係中來喜悅這神聖的恩賜。愛和被愛的可望和需要是人類共有的，每個人，無論性取向、性別認同、性別表達和性特徵，都有權益去自由地愛人和與自己所愛的人在一起，並得到平等和有尊嚴的對待。
這幾年我們持續與各教會、宗派和神學院對話。2014年，我們在雅加達神學院舉辦國際基督神學和性恐同諮詢研討會 (International Consultation on Church and Homophobia)。諮詢研討會發布聲明：教會作為公義與包容的社群，不應該立起藩籬，而是主動接觸被汙名、妖魔化的群眾。只有作為傾聽團體，才能瞭解他們的痛苦、慾望和希望。教會應該是避難所，守護那些渴望理解、友誼、愛、憐憫和團結(聯結)的人；作為耶穌的肢體(the Body of Christ)，在掙紮中活出屬神的生命。
近幾年來，有越來越多的基督徒和基督教組織站出來，打造安全環境，跟不同性傾向、性別認同、性表達和性特微的人站在一起。主流的主流新教教會菲律賓基督聯合教會（UCCP)，會友人數約150萬；2014年時，在每四年召開一次的年會暨創教66周年的大會上，針對同性戀、雙性戀和變性人族群，無異議通過 「恩典不分你我」 (Let Grace Be Total)法案。菲律賓基督聯合教會（UCCP）表示，這肯定了我們所有人，不分族群，都活在神的恩典中。這個聲明代表，與其歧視LGBT族群，教會應無條件的接納LGBT社群加入團契，成為會友。
CCI呼籲其教會成員，爭取在社區和國家中LGBT人士的尊嚴和權力。作為國家，可以從我們接受的能力中看出國家的崇高，開化的狀態，幫助遭遇不平等對待的的族群。但是，CCI也意識到教會會員和印尼人民尚未接受同性婚姻。CCI和教會與社會仍然需要 對同性婚姻這件事有進一步的神學對話。 印度全國教會理事會（NCCI）一直積極讓LGBT族群團結。2009年7月，NCCI組織了一項研究「印度教會和廢除『印度刑法』第377條」，收集了來自少數民族的一百多名參與者和來自LGBT社區的50個教堂。
NCCI鼓勵同性戀者不得被德里高法院列為犯罪分子。並由教會培育和幫助。今年年初，NCCI發表聲明，支持廢除印度刑法第377條 「將同性戀定罪」。該聲明補充說，「作為不守規矩的基督的追隨者與不公義和沒有同情心的傳統，我們呼籲拒絕將人類妖魔化，定罪和排斥的法律，並努力促進多包容性和愛的社區。 最近，世界宣教委員會向其成員教會發出牧函，其中包括馬來西亞的Geraja長老會， 韓國長老會，臺灣的長老會和新加坡的長老會都是會員，它說微笑是最美麗的語言。
今年，Amplify2018的主題是 「彩虹橋」 。我們希望我們可以在LGBTIQ群體和基督教會界之間建立橋樑，並見證耶穌所顯示神那包容愛，以及「行公義，憐憫，謙卑地與神同行」（彌迦書6：8）因此，我們必須與愛和正義結盟及反對一切形式的歧視和邊緣化。這是21世紀建立價值觀的基礎與人人平等的時代。平等不應只是一個口號，而必須落實在社會層層面面。消除性別歧視，維護人格尊嚴的性別平等教育必須加緊推動，急不容緩，否則源於無知的歧視將會繼續傷害生命。
這種迷信宗教的心態， 傷害生命， 貌似虔敬， 其實捨本逐末， 完全有違福音的好消息和耶穌所展現、所倡導並且為之獻上性命無條件的愛。為了愛和正義，我們來自亞洲各國的基督徒聚集在一起，團結一致反對一切形式的歧視，並懇請所有教會用愛，接受和肯定為具有不同性取向、性別認同、性別表達和性別特徵的人創造安全的空間。我們祈禱，臺灣會儘早實現婚姻平等，而亞洲的每個國家也都會隨之效仿；繼印度後，新加坡、馬來西亞和其他國家，將同性行為合法化並廢除過時的殖民法。
Christians in support of marriage equality, LGBTIQ anti-discrimination and creating a truly inclusive Church.
Amplify 2018 Taipei Statement:
We, the participants of Amplify 2018, gather here today in Taipei to attest to God’s love for all. We are Christians from diverse backgrounds, nationalities, sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics. We believe at the heart of the gospel of Jesus Christ is radical love, justice and inclusion. We believe that each person is created in the image of God, and each person is precious to God. We recognize that there are people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics. We affirm that being LGBTIQ is not a psychological disorder, a mental illness, immoral, evil, sinful, or depraved – it is simply a reflection of the amazing diversity that God has created.
We gather today to declare that the entire human race – everyone – is created in the image of God. Everyone means irrespective of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or sex characteristic. This makes it imperative for us to reject systemic and personal attitudes of homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and any kind of discrimination. We affirm that sexuality is a divine gift. God intends us to celebrate this divine gift in life-giving, consensual, and loving relationships. The desire and need to love and be loved is universal, and everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression and sex characteristics, should be free to love and be with the person they love, and be treated equally and with dignity.
Over the recent few years, we continue to build on the progress made by several Christian churches, denominations and seminaries. In 2014, a number of us participated in the International Consultation on Church and Homophobia held at Jakarta Theological Seminary. The statement from consultation declared that: “We believe that the Church as ‘Just and Inclusive Community’ is called to become a community without walls to reach out to people who are stigmatised and demonised, and be a listening community to understand their pains, desires and hopes.
We envision Church as a sanctuary to the ostracised who thirst for understanding, friendship, love, compassion and solidarity, and as the Body of Christ that joins in their struggles to live out their God-given lives. We appeal to the Christian communities to sojourn with people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics and their families without prejudice and discrimination, to provide them with ministries of love, compassionate care and justice. We implore Christian communities to start engaging in dialogue – not debate – with persons with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics to listen to their stories and struggles as acts of love.”
In recent years, an increasing number of Christians and Christian organisations have stepped forward to create safe spaces and stand in solidarity with people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics. In 2014, the United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP), a mainline Protestant church of around 1.5 million members, unanimously approved “Let Grace Be Total” policy statement on lesbians, gays, bisexual, and transgender people in its 10th Quadrennial General Assembly and 66th Founding Anniversary. UCCP stated, “This affirms that all of us regardless of any category are under the grace of God. The statement means that LGBTs should not be discriminated but should be unconditionally accepted in the fellowship and membership of the Church.”
The statement added, “The LGBTs, as a group has long been an object of ostracism and judgment, ridicule and condemnation by so many in our society. This is largely due to cultural ethos and values that are so patriarchal in nature, legalistic in perspective, pharisaic in world view and self-righteous in outlook. From such a perspective, world view and outlook, the LGBTs have no place, since this is a world only for either male or female. There can be no in between. There can be no grey areas. It is either black or white. Jesus has long denounced and rejected such a narrow, legalistic, patriarchal, pharisaic, self-righteous outlook and even hypocritical perspective (Matt. 23:1-28). Within this purview of the teachings and work of Jesus, the LGBTs can be considered as well embraced, affirmed and upheld by the gracious and loving presence of God in Jesus Christ.”
In 2016, the Executive Committee of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia also issued a pastoral letter to its member churches. In it, the committee states, “Many LGBT people have suffered physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually because of religious stigmatizations and violent behaviours committed by some people. They have become humiliated, ostracized, and discriminated even by the State. Churches must take a different stance. Churches must not only accept them, but instead they have to fight so that LGBT people can be accepted and their rights recognized by both the society and the State, especially the right to not be discriminated against or be excluded, the right to protection against violence, the right to obtain a job, and so on. The stakeholders of this country must ensure that the rights and dignity of LGBT people are respected! LGBT people should be given the opportunity to live in justice and peace.
CCI is calling its member churches, communities and the nation to accept and even fight for the rights and dignity of LGBT people. Our greatness as a civilized nation can be seen from our ability to accept and help those who are experiencing discrimination and injustice. However, CCI is aware that member churches and the people of Indonesia are not ready to accept same-sex marriage. CCI along with its member churches and all members of the society still requires dialogue and in-depth theological conversation regarding this matter.” The National Council of Churches in India (NCCI) has been actively involved in standing in solidarity with LGBTQ people. In July 2009, the NCCI had organised a study "Indian Church and Repealing of the Section 377 of Indian Penal Code", which gathered over a hundred participants from major Protestant churches and fifty from the LGBT community.
The NCCI welcomed the decriminalising of homosexuality by the Delhi High Court then and said that homosexuals must not be branded as criminals but "nurtured and helped out" by churches as part of creation. Early this year, the NCCI issued a statement in support of the repeal of section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that criminalises homosexuality. The statement added, “as followers of the non-conformist Christ, the one who consistently questioned unjust and non-compassionate traditions of public morality, our call is to reject all laws that demonize, criminalize, and exclude human beings, and work to facilitate just inclusive and loving communities.”
In a recent pastoral letter from the Council for World Mission (CWM) to its member churches, of which the Geraja Presbyterian Malaysia, Presbyterian Church of Korea, Presbyterian Church in Taiwan and the Presbyterian Church in Singapore are members, It stated: “LGBTQ people face significant reproach in societies, and religious groups add shame on top of this. By regarding LGBTQ people, people God has made, as sinful in our preaching, the Church has done great harm. The Church has inadvertently fostered hostility and rejection in the way the Bible is used to make LGBTQ people feel less than God’s people. The ‘Othering’ and scapegoating of men and women, young and old, is not the central message of Christianity, nor is it the proclamation of the Gospel; yet for many outside the church this is all we seem to stand for. In some contexts, such religiously sanctioned views have led to violence against LGBTQ people. That is sin. Churches, followers of Jesus, are called to be communities of hospitality and healing, not communities of hostility and harm, to God’s people. Christian communities speak of loving all of God’s creation, which includes LGBTQ people ‘despite’ their sexual orientation. However, unfortunately, LGBTQ people are excluded from this love and left feeling stigmatised and judged. Rather than confronting the sinful violence of homophobia, the Church has used the Bible as a weapon to strip people of their God-given dignity and worth because of their sexual identity.” We urge all Christians to reflect on the harm caused by the Church, and how the Church has often fallen short of its calling to be a community of love and hospitality.
This year, the theme of Amplify 2018 is “Rainbow Bridges” – and our hope is about building bridges between the LGBTIQ community and the Christian Church and be witnesses to the radical and inclusive love of God as revealed in Jesus, and to “do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with God.” (Micah 6:8) Therefore, it is imperative that we align ourselves with love, justice and against all forms of discrimination and marginalisation. Everyone is equal. This is the foundation of our shared values today. We cannot pay lip service to equality, but we need to integrate it into every aspect of our lives and society. Eliminating sexual inequality and defending human dignity through sexual equality education is an urgent task of utmost importance, without which, ignorance and discrimination will continue to do harm to many lives.
As Christians we must respect all lives. We must use reason to learn what science and psychology is revealing about the world we live in and the biases against LGBTIQ people. We need to learn to live lovingly with others. We should not live only for the protection of ourselves. We cannot believe that our interpretation of scripture is the always correct. We must not use God’s name to uphold and protect religious dogma and tradition.
We need to realize that some of our religious beliefs are disguised as reverence and piety, but they instead harm lives, in opposition to the good news of the gospel and against the radical love which Jesus demonstrated, advocated and gave his life for. For love and justice, we, the Christians from various countries across Asia, come together to stand in solidarity against all forms of discrimination and implore all churches to create safe spaces for people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics through love, acceptance and affirmation. We pray that marriage equality will be realised in Taiwan soon, and every country in Asia will follow as well; following India, Singapore, Malaysia and other countries will decriminalise same-sex behaviours and repeal obsolete colonial laws.
In the love of Christ, we pledge to stand with those who are oppressed and marginalised, to walk with those who seek to realise a fair, inclusive and just society, supporting equality. We will work together to end discrimination against sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics until every person is free to love and be with the person they love, receiving the blessings from the church and society. Because of principles of love and justice, because of the calling of the spirit of Christ, here we stand together, and we can do no other.