Is This Your Pastor? (Read The Current Review)  
  Co-Pastor Susie C. Owens
Greater Mount Calvary Holy Church
610 Rhode Island Avenue NE
Washington DC 20002

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Date: August 3, 2003 - 10:45AM
Sermon Title: I'm Going To Finish Strong
Scriptural Text: I Peter 5:6-11
You can hear this sermon yourself by ordering it online by clicking here.
RESULTS: removed the audio of this gay bashing sermon from it's Web site on 1.29.2004.


I Peter 5:6-11 - "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty had of God, that He may exalt you in due time. Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your bretheren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. To Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen."

I must admit, Co-Pastor Owens is one of my favorite preachers. I love her personality. Her sassiness. Her ability and strength to say whatever it is she has to say….just HOW she needs to say it. She is most definitely a powerful woman of God (when operating in the Spirit). Co-Pastor Owens starts this sermon by giving the text, giving her topic, and admonishing prayer warriors to pray by saying "whenever you begin to talk about sin, or going against the powers that be, you gon' need some help. And like I told them in the 8:00 service, make sure your neighbor doesn't sleep; and I DARE you to get up and walk out, I DARE you to move 'cause I WILL embarrass you." But she did say her assignment was to strengthen the faith of the saints, increase the level of faith so that the saints could stay on their path, strengthen the maintenance of the faith (?), and increase faith so the saints could stand up and tell the truth. Did she obey and complete her assignment? Let's see…

She moves on to talk about a letter she received at her house while she was away preaching. The person who wrote it had been in intercessory prayer on her behalf because she could feel in the Spirit that Susie was engaged in an intense personal struggle, but should keep the faith and continue on in God. Knowing that God is YET FAITHFUL, and would bring her out victoriously. After reading excerpts from the letter, she talked about things that she saw on CNN that week, and how much it grieved her. She was shocked that CNN anchors would be delivering these news stories. They were..

As of September 2003, New York City would open it's first Gay and Lesbian High School. She felt it was totally out of order for Gays and Lesbians teens to have their own school. She didn't feel it necessary (and according to the groans of the congregation, they agreed).

Forget the fact that gay and lesbian youth deal with the threat of unwarranted physical violence, heightened social persecution, and are more often depressed and fearful simply BECAUSE they are gays and lesbians. Is it not necessary for a city to ensure that ALL of their children receive quality education in a safe environment conducive to learning? Could it be that that best way to protect these students from violence and abuse was to create a school specifically for them? OF COURSE NOT….THEY'RE GAYS AND LESBIANS. THEY DON'T NEED TO FEEL SAFE SO THEY CAN CONCENTRATE ON GETTING GOOD GRADES. LET THEM FEAR FOR THEIR LIVES!

According to Co-Pastor Owens, a new "virtual reality" television show was coming out. BOY MEETS BOY. "And it's not gonna be airing on Cable or Direct TV, but Prime Time on REGULAR TV STATIONS during the time that our children are at home watching TV. How dare they put a TV show on where men would be parading around in front of other men like it's okay!" she exclaimed. And the congregation roared in applause.

Well, BRAVO is a cable station…NOT a regular network station. And most cable services give you the option to block certain things that parents find unsuitable for children. Note to parents: Start parenting again. If you feel something isn't good for your child, DON'T LET THEM WATCH IT!

The "Epistopal (not Episcopal, but Epistopal) Church voted to ordain and accept an openly gay priest!" From the way the crowd moaned and groaned, you would have thought someone died. She felt it reprehensible for a church to sanction a gay man to speak the oracles of God.

Nevermind the fact that the people who elected and ordained him felt that he was a good priest. He helped people. The parishioners LOVE him. His work spoke volumes of his character, his love for God, and his devotion to showing God's love to people. He was obedient in doing what priests should do. But no, he shouldn't be ordained. After all , HE'S GAY! Let THAT be what we judge him on.

She went on to say how the devil tried really hard to stop her from preaching this sermon. But she told him, "I'm gonna preach this sermon if I gotta crawl to do it. I gotta tell the TRUTH!" The congregation went WILD! (Now stay with me here, she's getting somewhere….I promise.) Co-Pastor Owens then said, "let the tape and the record show, that I AM NOT a homophobic person. I AM NOT a 'gay bashing' preacher. I just don't applaud the gay and lesbian lifestyle. SIN IS SIN! I don't care if you a fornicator, an adulterer, a murderer, a liar, a thief, or if you love to gossip…ALL OF IT IS SIN!" She said she started to get depressed and upset by the things going on in this world. "The more you tell people that God loves them, the crazier they get!". Well Pastor Owens, first of all WRONG LIST! Gays and Lesbians go on the list with Jew, Gentile, male, female, black, white…you know? The list that tells the diversity of people? Not the list of sins. Though homosexuals DO commit such sins just like everyone else. But being born who they are? NOT SIN!

Lastly, she made a snide remark about "you gays that are taking the pills thinking you're delivered, trying to get your lil' T-cell count up…check out the latest medical report. The HIV virus can over time develop a resistance to those pills. So, what you thought could make you able to go out and continue what you were doing…THE PILLS AIN'T WORKIN NO MORE. If you don't be careful, God will take what was meant to bless you and use it to curse you." Now, I thought this statement was mean, heartless, and just downright horrible. Everyone knows that HIV is NOT A GAY DISEASE. Women and Children are DYING from HIV related illnesses just like gay men are. And they didn't get it from GAY MEN! They got it from DISHONEST PEOPLE WITH NO INTEGRITY. The severity of HIV in this country is passed epidemic proportion! People take those pills so if they DO get the flu or anything else, THEY WON'T DIE! Not so they can have an excuse to go out and have sex like wild animals! To say this statement was TRUTH or of GOD, is A LIE! It was foul. It was unnecessary. And it was WRONG!

During this little tirade, I thought to myself…what is it about gays and lesbians being extended the same liberties and freedoms as everyone else in this country that she finds bothersome? So much so that she feels threatened or cornered to the point that she has to engage in this fierce battle against this powerful foe? She felt so disturbed by this that she felt her "telling the truth" about this issue could take her off the international circuit of preachers, and she would be become unpopular. Equal rights for gays and lesbians is so terrible that the territorial demons in this country were trying to bring a shift in the purpose and plan of God…and SHE had to risk being a martyr and stand against it. Now, what ALL THAT propaganda and pontificating going on….WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH THE TEXT? Peter was writing to Christians who were struggling with issues that could weaken their faith, he felt he needed to encourage them in the Lord, so they wouldn't lose heart. OH, I SEE IT NOW….homosexuality (and the spirit of sexuality) is running wild in our society, and Christians need to know how to finish strong in the fight against it…right? WHATEVER!

THEN SHE STARTED PREACHING! When she FINALLY started dealing with the TEXT she gave in the first place, got out of her flesh, and stopped venting about her issues…she preached a good sermon. She said the problem with the church is we are afraid to stand up and tell the truth because we're afraid of starting trouble. "START SOME TROUBLE!" she said. "GOD DIDN'T BRING YOU OUT FOR YOU BE QUIET! STOP BEING AFRAID…START SOME TROUBLE!" Okay Co-Pastor Owens, we will take your advice! She pointed out that Peter gave Christians a "formula for how to end strong". I don't think she honestly realized that what was meant to discourage gays and lesbians, is actually the Word of God FOR them.

  1. Be humble! Knowing that this battle isn't gonna be fought in your own strength. Understand that this battle ain't about you. Just because you on the Lord's side don't mean you don't have issues that you're dealing with. So make sure you keep it in perspective. In your battle, know that you are fighting to please God…not so you can get all puffed up and proud. Everything you have comes from Him. Even your strength to fight.
  2. Be sober! Not sober, as in not under the influence of alcohol or drugs. But sober as in practicing self control. Exercising discipline. In order to win in ANY battle, you have to be disciplined. And that means being able to tell yourself NO! When something tempts you, and you feel yourself getting weak, remember your goal is the Glory of God. Do what it takes to stay away from things that can hinder you in reaching your goal.
  3. Be vigilant! Be alert and aware of your surroundings. Know what is REALLY going on around you. Don't get comfortable and think you're doing your thang! There are things going on that can overtake you if you aren't aware. Stay alert so you can't be taken by surprise.
  4. Resist the your enemy! Your enemy is roaming around like a lion seeking whom he may devour. Remember battles aren't won when you retreat. You must stand and fight! The Bible says that if you resist the devil he will flee from you (James 4.7). Resistance brings about strength. If you resist your enemy long enough, he will leave you alone if you don't kill him first. DON'T RUN….STAND AND FIGHT!

Co-Pastor Susie Owens is a powerful preacher (when she's REALLY preaching). And there's no doubt in my mind that she loves God. I believe that she loves God's people too. But with this sermon, I think she got a little carried away. The pulpit should never be used like a police badge that allows you to say what YOU want to say just because you are dealing with issues. I don't see how her sharing her feelings about what she heard on the news and how she feels about it was helping ANYONE! And I don't think she was trying to be malicious. I think her "venting" was more of a smoke screen. Pump up my personal agenda, get the crowd hyped up and feeling like their God given rights and privileges are being threatened by the enemy and those he has deceived, and use this scripture as a war cry.

Fortunately, the entire hour wasn't filled with the abusive, divisive, homophobic, gay bashing rhetoric we all have heard time and time again. Aside from her venting, she was true to her calling. She completed her assignment. No matter what you're up against…social injustice, poverty, illiteracy, bigotry, spiritual (or any type of ) abuse, depression, or political misconduct, if you are gonna end strong, you MUST be humble, sober, vigilant, and never fail to resist our enemy. And you resist your enemy by not being silent. But by opening your mouth, lifting your voice, and declaring HIS TRUTH! If you do this, trust me YOU WILL END STRONG!




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