As this story of the Texas mega church stunt continues to unfold, we want to continue our attempt to make an appropriate and helpful response.
One of the unintended consequences of this kind of gesture will be the kinds of conversations it generates in the workplace today. It would be wise on the part of anyone who wants to discuss this at work to make a careful examination of their heart and take a careful look at the sexual harassment policies in their workplace. Because of the highly sexualized nature of the American culture, and the profound damage done to millions of persons through sexual abuse, demonstrations like this can easily lead to more abuse at worst and create unsafe working environments for the vulnerable at minimum. Though surely unintended by the Youngs, (and perhaps they will address this as part of their experiment) these kinds of conversations readily create opportunities for inappropriate humor and the crossing of boundaries that should not be crossed. Again, in many if not most sexual harassment policies in the North American workplace, this kind of behavior is de facto sexual harassment. While we agree it is a very important issue to be engaged, it requires the utmost wisdom, care and respect for others. I offer this counsel both as an ordained minister and as a licensed attorney as well as from my post as Vice President for Community Formation at Asbury Theological Seminary.