Australian Story
Former Citipointe Christian College student Felicity Myers poses for a photo with supporters outside Citipointe Christian College in Brisbane, Monday, January 31, 2022. (AAP Image/Jono Searle)

Tonight – Homosexuality and the Church on Australian Story

Losing Faith

Introduced by ABC Radio National’s Geraldine Doogue

They lived a life in secret, full of shame. They were 12, 14, 15 year-old students at a conservative Christian school, who’d been told that homosexuality was sinful and socially destructive.

Felicity Myers graduated from the school two years ago. She never imagined she would stand up and challenge those teachings publicly.  Neither did former students Samuel Martin or Emmey Leo. 

But when Brisbane’s Citipointe Christian College released an updated enrolment contract earlier this year, asking parents to agree homosexuality was a sin and stipulating students enrol under their birth gender, Felicity, then Samuel, then Emmey, had to speak out.

“I just remember sitting there probably in shock for a minute. Seeing it in writing like that brought me back to being in that school environment. And something sort of sparked inside me and I was like, I can’t not say anything about it.”  – Felicity Myers.

Together, the Citipointe graduates’ stories made national news.  

But they never anticipated the firestorm they’d ignite in the corridors of Parliament House.

“Our family certainly felt like we were caught in the crossfire. My daughter and children like her, who are part of the LGBQTI community, witnessed their rights thrown around and used as a political football.”  –  school parent and former teacher Helen Clapham-Burns.

Nor did they imagine the influence they would have on politicians about to debate the controversial Religious Discrimination Bill.

“The Citipointe story had a profound impact on the conscience of many of my colleagues in the coalition party room” – Trent Zimmerman, former federal MP.

Although the bill was ultimately shelved, the battle of faith versus freedom is still playing out across the country.

“Schools should be free to say exactly what they believe and why but we’re losing that freedom now because of this witch hunt which is going on against Christians. There’s no other way of putting it.”  – David d’Lima, Family Voice.

Producers: Kirstin Murray and Jennifer Feller.

AUSTRALIAN STORYMonday 31 October at 8pm on ABC TV and ABC iview

Media Release – ABC

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