List of Attacks Against Christian Sexual Orientation Group

Country: Germany

Date of incident: December 10, 2010

At a meeting on Freedom of Religion of OSCE/ODIHR in Vienna on Dec 9 and 10, the spokesperson of Wüstenstrom, a Christian NGO representing people with unwanted same-sex attractions, summarized a series of intolerance and attacks against them and their work. Find here the full text of his intervention.

STATEMENT OF THE REGISTERED ASSOCIATION „WUESTENSTROM“ to the OSCE/ODIHR and Participating States, Supplementary Human Dimension Meeting on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Vienna 2010 Dear chairman, ladies and gentlemen, I am talking to you as the spokesman of the registered association wuestenstrom. We are an association of people who have been struggling with sexual problems, especially with unwanted same sex attractions. I myself had to find a way to deal with unwanted same sex attractions. We are working with the minority of people in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, who desire to live their sexuality in accordance with the principles of their Christian Faith, especially with people with same sex attractions who because of their convictions donʻt want to live as homosexuals or even have the wish to seek a change in their sexual orientation as far as it is possible. Our association is respecting any decision an individual is making concerning his or her sexual orientation - and we appreciate the principles about freedom of religion or belief and about the autonomy of religious associations that are discussed here at the meeting on freedom of religion. Regrettably we experience lots of defamation and insult when we call attention to the minority that we are representing on religious or Christian events in Germany. • So for example we have been related to persons denying the Holocaust by politicians of the Green party (Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen) in Germany; • in 2008 we have been invited to a Christian youth event „Christival“ in Bremen in Germany to talk about the specific conflicts of boys who have been sexually abused. Our invitation has been scandalized by some gay and lesbian organizations along with the Green party in Germany who questioned our participation there officially in the German Bundestag. This lead to an action alliance against our participation including violent acts against Christians participating in a divine service at the youth event. Finally our workshop had to be held at a secret place under the protection of the police. • in 2009 we followed an invitation to The Congress for Psychotherapy and Counseling for Christian counselors and psychotherapists in Marburg in Germany. This time also the congress and especially our workshop about the identity of men and women could only take place with protection of one thousand policemen because of the harassments. • also in 2009 a journalist published a book and in one chapter he wanted to describe his positive experiences with our association. But the publishing house of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung wanted him to cancel the specific chapter because they feared attacks by the gay and lesbian movement in Germany. • a large organization here in Austria planned to host a congress with us as main speakers in 2009 but cancelled the event because of the hostility they expected from the gay and lesbian movement. • in the meantime gay and lesbian organizations in Germany and the Green party also as the party Die Linke do everything they can to forbid therapy and counseling for those people who are seeking change of their sexual orientation or who express, that they exerience, that their homosexuality does not belong to them. We are working as persons concerned for persons concerned and we wish to have the freedom to hold our view about sexuality and ethics on sexuality as Christians in Germany in a free and fair discourse - respecting other opinions and visions of life. • So we ask you as representatives to do anything that we as Christians and that we as persons concerned of homosexual feelings have the freedom to live and deal with our sexuality according to our religious beliefs and moral convictions. • We want to express our request that as a part of a plural society we as a minority want to share our experiences to the public discourse and on religious events without being threatened by violence and without plan sponsors to be threatened to disinvite us from events and congresses. Thank you very much for your attention. Stefan Schmidt Speaker, wuestenstrom e.V.