School says it 'got it wrong' over worksheet about the Bible and homosexuality

Hunterhouse College in Belfast has withdrawn the worksheet

Click to follow
The Independent Online

A school in Belfast has issued an apology after parents complained about a worksheet focusing on what the Bible says about homosexuality.

The father of a pupil at Hunterhouse College told the BBC that the questions asked in relation to a New Testament passage gave only a limited viewpoint and portrayed gay people negatively.

The worksheet was based on 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, which describes those who “will not inherit the king of God”. Among these, the worksheet listed “homosexual perverts”. Other translations do not use this exact term. Other groups of people referenced in the same passage include adulterers and thieves.

The three questions asked were:
What do these verses tell us about homosexuals?
Who else is included with homosexuals?
What hope is there for all these people?

The school said it has withdrawn the worksheet, which was part of a broader debate on sexuality, including opinions at the extreme end of the spectrum.

Headmaster Andrew Gibson told the broadcaster the school had “got it wrong” and has approached the gay rights charity Rainbow Project NI for advice. He said the school had set their questions within the context of exam board CCEA specifications.

Malachai O’Hara, health and wellbeing services manager at the Rainbow Project NI, told The Independent: “I think that the problem comes from the lack of clarity in the syllabus. We are really keen to work with the Department for Education to make sure there is a mainstream approach in schools.

“There are quite a number of issues around sexual orientation in general in Northern Ireland and we are keen to see a strategy in the coming year that will tackle some of these.”`