Frank Ehman is a friend and a very wise Presbyterian minister in Flower Mound, Texas. When I’ve been in trouble in my denomination for offering grace to groups that some believed were the wrong kind of people, Frank has often called with words of reassurance.
I’m not sure I remember the specific details, but Frank once told me of a meeting he had with a very powerful member of the community when he first got to Flower Mound. It seems like this person was angry with him for being nice to a gay man, and to some others the man deemed to be “the wrong kind of people.”
Frank was new to the church, and my memory is that he invited the man to coffee, pulled out some paper and a pencil, and as if to make a list, said, “Bill, I just need to know who all I will have to hate in this town to be your friend.”
Remember when it was ‘against the law’ for a white person to love and marry a black person? Hatred and bigotry sometimes have to be legislated to die. They do not go away willingly or because it is the right thing to do.