World Vision’s bold move to buckle

"World Vision Whiplash" (by nakedpastor David Hayward)

“World Vision Whiplash” (by nakedpastor David Hayward)

My cartoon and post yesterday got lots of attention. I wasn’t aiming at World Vision but those who withdrew their support based on their decision to employ gays and lesbians.

But not long after I posted it they changed their minds and reversed their hiring policy change.

They say, “Rather than creating more unity (among Christians), we created more division, and that was not our intent.”

I think what they meant to say was that they created more division among certain kinds of Christians… those who are against gays, lesbians and same-sex relationships. That’s what they meant. Because I know plenty of Christians who applauded their bold move to make their employment policies more just.

They buckled under pressure.

Many people got jerked around.

I hoped that their intent to open their hiring policy would have attracted more support. We will never know.

So I drew a cartoon of their board with whiplash collars. No one survives that sudden a change in direction without injuries.

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16 Responses

  1. Laura says:

    I’m depressed. I saw a glimmer of hope for the hopeless, Christians that is.

  2. Cecilia Davidson says:

    Well the amount of whiplash is just damn sad, really.
    And people wonder why i’m skeptical of Pope Francis and the Vatican.

  3. Coolmom9 says:

    Did they not think this would bring some adversity? Did they not think some people would have trouble with their decision?

    Reversing their policy makes them look unstable and indecisive. I wasn’t giving them money before, and I surely won’t now.

  4. Wonder if World Vision will likewise reverse the donations that came in from new donors who wanted to show a sign of support for their short-lived policy change?

  5. Mark Anderson says:

    That’s just very disappointing. And I agree with Coomom9 – they should have foreseen the backlash.

  6. Robert says:

    Well, after a horrible accident my Christianity had gone into a coma for almost 25 years. Just recently it had shown some signs of life. The events of this week however have brought it to its final end. The degree of depravity and moral cowardice exhibited in the whole sad affair makes me realize that this is not something I want to raise my son in. I hope that those who continue to fight the good fight are victorious, but I think they are simply trying to patch holes in the Titanic. Better to salvage what you can, and build a life raft to save as many as possible. Let the rest go. The world will be better off without it.

  7. John Thomas says:

    I grieve for the children affected on all sides, but I also grieve for LGBTQ employees who came out this week and now will likely be fired.

  8. irreverance says:

    Did they do it because the “created more division” or because they created less donations? And do they really think that people are really going to believe their official reason?

  9. Such a great point @John Thomas. That’s tragic. Imagine the maelstrom of negative attention WV would receive if they actually did that. That said, if I was an outed LGBTQ employee at WV, there’s no way I’d want to stay. Very difficult time for them, no doubt.

  10. T E Hanna says:

    Did you see Tony Jones’ writeup on it today? Apparently this was much bigger than just “buckling under pressure.” This was a travesty… from a slow, progressive change that was leaked to Christianity Today, to CT’s declaration that they were going to run the story with or without WV’s input, to WV’s scramble in offering an exclusive interview (in a hope to mitigate fallout?), to the very visible withdrawal of Christian evangelicals, to – and this is the big one – the potential withdrawal of global donors that allow WV to remain in operation.

    In other words, the way this was handled by the media and by evangelicals in general (amidst whom I ashamedly still list myself) backed WV into such a corner where they had to choose between continuing to exist as an organization (thereby continuing their mission to the poor) and allowing for equal employment.

    They chose to remain in existence. I understand that today was a very, very sad day for those at WV.

    Here is Tony Jone’ article: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/tonyjones/2014/03/27/lets-talk-about-what-happened-yesterday-at-world-vision/

    Pay attention to the comments. There is some really insightful commentary from WV employees in there.

  11. Doug says:

    This whole mess just plain grieves me to the depths of my spirit. Every time I think I’m still an evangelical at heart, something like this comes along and reminds me that I’m a long, long way from where they are.

  12. David says:

    Thanks T E Hanna. Good lead!

  13. kris799 says:

    @Robert, I feel the same way. I can never go back to Christianity again.

  14. Tim says:

    World Vision and Christianity Today share a board member. And one wonders how these things leak…

    Also, it’s ok to make decisions because of changing societal attitudes. It’s also ok to make them because of peer pressure or money (or organisational survival). But to blame the Bible both times is just embarrassing.

    If there’s anything positive coming out of this mess for me, it is a commitment to never cloak my motivations in religious language. And I’ll happily continue to support non-Christian NGOs which relieve the distress of our poor, fight our climate change, and advocate for our LGBT+ people.

  15. Pete says:

    Happy to be post Christian spiritual agnostic who talks to Jesus

  16. John says:

    I am a Christian and remain so. That said, I was angered by what took place in WV this week. It saddens me that the irrational behaviour of some who claim to be “Bible-believing Christians” can undermine and destroy people’s chance of knowing the true Jesus. Many homophobic people read of cases where men have sexually abused boys and incorrectly extrapolated this and assumed that homosexual men are all interested in children. Many people read of terrorist attacks done by some extremist Muslims and assume every Muslim is a potential terrorist. We know that both assumptions are wide of the mark and very sad. Let us not assume that homophobes are representative of Christ.

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